My review of ten team task management tools now available at GigaOM Pro, using a task model versus team model 10x10 grid approach:
Excerpt to give a sense of the analysis in the report:
Three offerings in the top tier — Do, Trello, and Asana — cluster together, with Wrike as an outlier. Do and Asana are competitive products, sharing common design metaphors as well as similar team and task models. Both scored an eight for having effective killer features, as did Trello. Trello has perhaps the most innovative user experience of all of these top-tier solutions. But the choice between those two user experience design approaches has to be left to the user, ultimately. Wrike, the outlier in this tier, is a somewhat less team-oriented tool but has the richest task model of all the products.
I think in future versions of this report I will a/ start with a larger group of products, b/ winnow down more aggressively, with one sentence or one paragraph characterizations of the lower tiers, and c/ provide in depth reviews of the top tier solutions, only.
Last month, Dropbox released Dropbox Chooser, an API to make integration of Dropbox into other applications much easier. Wrike has released a new version of their team task manager to leverage Dropbox Chooser, joining Asana and others. Read the rest.
As an avid user of Remember The Milk, I wanted to offer two quick suggestions:
RTM has a GMail extension, too - https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/5339
Also, RTM can be run in the sidebar via their very powerful Google gadget. I do this everyday - it’s great.
So I took a look, and in a few minutes, I switched to Remember The Milk, and quickly decided to drop Todoist.
Todoist is based on the project metaphor: every task must be in a project, which annoys me, and complicates the interface and experience. RTM, on the other hand, better supports my bottom-up mindset: I create tasks and tag them with as many terms as I like, so I can display everything tagged ‘London’ or ‘cash’.
I favor the chronological orientation of the RTM sidebar, and the ease with which I can pull down the controller on each task to set the status to complete, or to postpone or edit the task.
Here’s the web site, which opens when you click on a task in the sidebar, or select edit:
The list is fine, but I seldom spend much time adding tasks in this view, except to add notes to tasks.
The integration with Google Calendar is totally great, and it the primary integration point that sells me on RTM:
The hack creates a new calendar which contain RTM tasks in some sneaky way (I say sneaky, because you can’t see the tasks when you try to subscribe to that RTM calendar). By clicking on the check icon associated with each day, you see any that day’s tasks, plus any others that are still pending from earlier days. These can be edited or completed just as in the sidebar, and new tasks can be added, and tied to the day selected. Very cool.
The integration with Gmail is not as clean and direct as with Todoist: when you use the “Add to RTM” button that gets placed at the bottom of Gmail’s emails, it pops a window:
It you want to add tags or set the date for the gmail-linked task, you have to edit the magic words in the email that is generated, and which is later sent to your Remember The Milk account. Later, if you want to bring up the email that was linked, you have to go through two steps:
So it’s workable, but I favor the more direct one-click approach that Todoist provides. RTM’s team should do something along those lines.
However, I have found the switch worthwhile, and I am very happy with RTM’s look and feel, especially the tag-based organization into taggings, not projects.
Alexandra Samuel also commented on the earlier post:
Stowe, you make a compelling case for ToDoist over RTM, though I have been pretty happy with RTM — except for the basic nightmare of having tasks split between RTM and Basecamp. I just blogged how we’re using Basecamp (http://www.socialsignal.com/basecamp-workflow), despite the fundamental problem that we have with Basecamp’s lack of task due dates or task annotation.
What I’m curious to hear — and a little reluctant to take on the hard way, i.e. by personally testing yet another project management tool — is whether your Todoist plus Huddle approach would offer any major improvement in task management integration, compared to our Basecamp plus RTM solution. It sounds like you are still in the same pickle of needing to keep tasks in two places. Does the non-secure RSS setup at Huddle let you export your tasks in some more usable form (e.g. the kludgy approach of placing them on an iGoogle homepage, next to an RTM widget, so you can at least lay eyes on all your tasks in one place)? Or would you, given the overhead of switching a team to a new tool, wait for some more revolutionary, hint hint, solution?
Yes, I am still divided between a task management tool — RTM — and a social work management tool — Huddle — which both have task management capabilities, and which are unintegrated. I use RTM to manage my personal debris: telephone calls, posts to write, email to follow up on, planes, trains, and automobiles. This follows my personal patterns pretty well.
Of course, I could use RTM’s shared tasks with others, in principle, but I am a soloist playing in many orchestras, so trying to get my colleagues in the various companies where I am consulting to use RTM seems a bit too complex, since all it offers is task management. So, I invite my colleagues to use Huddle to manage the conversations around our work, and any project-related shared tasks. Or they invite me to use Basecamp, which happens frequently, or Clearspace, or some other tool. And I just flex, because there is so little leverage from having all your work in one of these contexts, anyway. They are just big collections of projects chatter, useful for collaborating on concepts and coordinating work lists, but not particularly geared to supporting the flow of work.
Yes, I have dreams of a more revolutionary solution, but that’s all you’ll get out of me today, Alexandra. In the near term, I have provided a list of recommendations to the folks at Huddle, and they are at work on some of them. Most importantly, I want things like having comments on Huddle posts (which they now call ‘whiteboards’ for no good reason) finding their way into the RSS feed. And, yes I would like tasks to show up in the RSS feed as well.
Stowe, not everybody uses Gmail. Does Todoist integrate with other email applications? Wrike does. I use it everywhere and can check a project updates even from my BlackBerry. I’ve read your review, looks pretty tough. But it was almost a year ago, Wrike guys have done a lot and the tool is now very efficient. I signed up only in May and I don’t know how it was in the beginning, but Wrike is full-fledged now. And besides, you can share all your tasks in Wrike. I have a small business and my whole team is working in Wrike. If I want to get an overview of my whole project work I use timeline, which is very handy. This tool doesn’t need “integration” with Huddle or any other tools. So probably you should take a look at it once again?
Well, I do use Gmail, so that matters to me, a lot. I really don’t like the Wrike model, which is — once again — tied to a “project as container” metaphor. Wrike’s timeline view is a nice feature, but it’s not important enough to me in general to justify the tool.
When Greg wrote ‘I use timeline’ I thought he meant another external tool. I hadn’t heard of Timeline, which is a widget for visualizing time-based information. That looks cool, although you have to manually generate the Timeline dataset, right? Too much work, in general. Maybe someone will build an exporter from RTM and/or Huddle, and I could get timelines whenever I needed one.