Best Project Management Software for Agencies
Last updated on September 20th, 2023

Best Project Management Software for Agencies

Key points

  1. The right project management software can help agencies improve productivity, streamline communication, and increase efficiency.
  2. It’s important to choose a software that aligns with your agency’s specific needs and goals, and offers features like task tracking, collaboration tools, and reporting.
  3. This article introduces you to five best tools your agencies can use for its project management.

Agencies are constantly juggling projects, clients, teams, and assets. Without a solid organizational system in place, things can quickly spiral out of control.

If you’re wondering what project management software is: project management tools are designed to streamline all the small tasks that take up a lot of your time. In the end, you can focus on what really matters—delivering quality services to your clients.

But not any project management software for agencies will do—agencies have very specific needs. So, in this guide, I’ll be giving you a list of my favorite project management tools for agencies (plus a framework for choosing one).

Ready to get control of your agency’s projects? Let’s dive in.

Choosing an agency project management system

Not all project management solutions are created equal. But some of them have been designed to meet the needs of agencies. Generally speaking, project management software should accomplish three primary objectives:

  1. assign and delegate tasks to team members

  2. manage resources (budgets, workloads, etc.)

  3. track progress towards goals, milestones, and objectives

While the objectives are important, you also need to think about your team: who are they, what is their role, and what needs do they have?

Creative agencies have different needs than a marketing agency. A creative team will need to have a lot of visual functionality, for instance being able to mark up images. On the other hand, marketing teams could require the possibility to work with third party collaborators.

Related

Let’s look at a few points you should think about before you choose a platform to manage projects, creative work, and more.

Data accessibility

The best project management software for agencies should provide team members with access to data and insights from anywhere, on any device.

SPP order details example

They should also display said data in a number of helpful formats (e.g., Gantt charts, resource utilization reports, etc.). This makes absorbing key information much more efficient and reliable.

Integrations

Ideally, the software you choose for your agency project management should integrate with other tools that you use frequently.

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Take SPP for example—our client portal tool integrates with tons of popular platforms ranging from data visualization tools like Looker Studio to marketing automation tools like ActiveCampaign. Streamlining workflows is easy when the tools you use can communicate.

Scalability

As an agency grows, so too should its project management software. The best project management tool for agencies is designed to handle increased complexity as your organization expands.

SPP team roles settings

This is where features like SPP’s custom permissions controls come in handy. When you start hiring for more niche roles, you can restrict and grant access to project and client data as needed.

Real-time reporting

Real-time reporting features are essential for reducing manual data entry and staying up-to-date with project progress.

SPP admin dashboard revenue report

Look for project management software that offers a wide range of powerful analytics and reporting tools. Whether it’s comprehensive project tracking and reporting or customizable task statuses, having a system that you can rely on to monitor and track projects will help ensure timely delivery.

Client friendliness

Agencies need to keep clients in the loop—that’s one of the biggest factors in strengthening the agency-client relationship. But not all project management tools are designed to be used internally and externally.

SPP example messages

For example, SPP is a client portal with project management tools built in. It’s designed to be user-friendly and accessible, so clients can keep track of project progress without having to call you or your team members.

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Top 5 best project management software for agencies

It’s time to get to my picks for the best project management software in 2023 (for agencies). I’ll do a deep dive into each tool on the list, but here’s the summary:

  1. Service Provider Pro: made for growing agencies

  2. Project.co: for a simple client experience

  3. nTask: for juggling many types of projects

  4. Zoho Projects: for agencies on a budget

  5. Hive: for resource management

Now, let’s look at each one in more detail.

1. Service Provider Pro

SPP order management view

Service Provider Pro is a client portal tool purpose-built to make life easier for growing digital marketing and SEO agencies.

It offers powerful project management features like task assignments, customizable statuses and permissions, file sharing, project tracking and agency client reporting, messaging, integrations with tons of popular tools, and top-range security features.

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Plus, it’s designed to be user-friendly for both your team and clients!

Key features

  • Assignments & task tracking: Assign tasks to team members, set deadlines, and track progress.

  • File sharing: Share files with clients.

  • Reporting: Real-time reporting tools to stay up-to-date with project progress.

  • Client access: Easily give clients access to project data.

Related

Pricing

Plans start at $129/month for basic and $299/month for the Pro version, with the major differences being the amount of team members included and increased features. There’s also the Plus plan for larger teams and those looking for custom projects.

Pros & cons

Pros

  • Designed specifically for agencies.

  • User-friendly and accessible to clients.

  • Powerful project management features.

  • Best-in-class security features.

Cons

  • Not as many native integrations as other tools.

  • Can be pricey for small agencies and solopreneurs.

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2. Project.co

Project.co for simple client experience

Project.co is the only other project management on this list (aside from SPP) that was specifically designed to be simple enough for agency clients to use without a lengthy onboarding session.

With Project.co, you can customize your project views to best suit your agency’s needs and give clients access with a few clicks. And as an internal tool, there are still enough bells-and-whistles to keep your team running smoothly.

Key features

  • Discussion: Chat with project stakeholders in real-time.

  • Time tracking: Track time spent on each task.

  • Tasks: See project progress at a glance.

Pricing

Project.co Free is too limited in terms of storage to be useful. Small teams will want to go with Team ($8/user/month) and large teams will want to go with Agency ($12/user/month).

Pros & cons

Pros

  • Designed specifically for agencies.

  • User-friendly and accessible to clients.

Cons

  • Not many native integrations.

  • Fairly basic feature-set.

3. nTask

nTask for juggling many types of projects

nTask is a great solution for small agencies looking to collaborate with their teams, manage tasks, and organize meetings. Through its cloud-based platform, users have access to a flexible suite of tools that help your team manage a wide range of different project types.

Key features

  • Task tracking: Assign tasks to team members.

  • Scheduling: Schedule meetings, share invites, and integrate communication tools.

  • Reporting: Get real-time project updates with reporting tools covering everything from productivity to finances.

Pricing

Custom permissions are a must for agencies, and the only nTask plan that offers this is the Business plan, which costs $8/user/month

Pros & cons

Pros

  • Easy to use and navigate.

  • Affordable pricing for small agencies.

Cons

  • Not as many features as the other options on this list.

  • Client access isn’t as easy as with other tools.

4. Zoho Projects

Zoho Projects: for agencies on a budget

Zoho Projects is a powerful project management tool from Zoho designed to help teams of all sizes manage their projects and collaborate efficiently (and cheaply). It offers a pretty impressive set of features for the price, including task management, conversations, project templates and reports, Gantt charts, file sharing, and more.

Key features

  • Task management: Assign tasks to team members and track progress.

  • Automation: Automate routine tasks and processes.

  • Customization: Customize view options with project templates and reports.

Pricing

Zoho Projects Premium ($5/user/month) comes will almost all the features agencies need. The only reason to upgrade to Enterprise ($10/user/month) would be if you need more storage or workflow customization.

Pros & cons

Pros

  • Powerful project management features.

  • Affordable pricing for small teams.

Cons

  • Unintuitive onboarding process.

  • No dedicated space for clients.

5. Hive

Hive for resource management

Hive is a project management tool designed to help teams track progress, communicate effectively, and work smarter. It offers most of the features you’d expect from an agency project management tool, like task management, file sharing, messaging, and calendar integration, plus resource management features.

Key features

  • Task management: Break down projects into tasks and subtasks.

  • File sharing: Easily store and share project-related files.

  • Resource management: Quickly see where your team is being over and under-utilized.

Pricing

Hive’s Free plan only comes with 500 MB of storage—not enough for even the smallest agency—so the Pro plan ($12/user/month) is a must.

Pros & cons

Pros

  • Intuitive interface.

  • Affordable for small teams.

Cons

  • Limited integrations.

  • Lacks advanced project management features.

Avatar of Deian Isac
Head of Agency Success
Having worked as a content writer for 8+ years, Deian has partnered up with a lot of different agencies for content production. He understands their processes and now helps agencies scale up their operations with SPP. Besides his success activities, he also manages the content strategy of Service Provider Pro, writes captivating blog posts himself, and produces case studies.

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