Agile methodology is best described as a hyper-analytical approach to product development and project management. Constant conversations between team members with rapid-fire completion of tasks are paramount to building products from the ground up. To achieve their goals, users need the best Agile tools available.
- Monday.com is our overall choice of the best software for implementing the Agile frameworks. Jira is a close contender.
- Wrike offers a solid Agile template. Its major flaw, however, is the poor design of its user interface.
- Nifty has all the potential to be a leading choice in the future. It will need to add a scrum board and fix some performance issues first, though.
Agile project management is a fantastic way to stay on top of and improve your workflows. There’s no telling when product development may divert from the original roadmap, and with Agile methodology you’re able to adapt and move forward without hesitation.
Remember, though, that Agile methodology is an ideological approach to getting things done. While it sounds great on paper, without the proper tools to implement this specific approach to project management, you’ll never reach your desired outcomes. To ensure that doesn’t happen, we’re suggesting the best Agile project management solutions, starting with monday.com.
Jira is a popular tool for the Agile management of products and projects. That’s mainly because it’s easy to use and also extremely versatile, making it suitable for other types of project management.
Scrum tends to be the most common Agile framework as it allows project managers to assign scrum masters who can generate value through adaptive solutions to tasks and objectives. Check out our best scrum software in 2022.
The three frameworks of Agile are scrum, kanban and extreme programming (XP). In the form of Agile tools, these three frameworks help implement Agile development for a hyper-focused view of project/product development.
What Makes the Best Agile Tools?
Our approach to finding the best Agile project management tools was simple. We wanted to select software that had the traditional tools found in the Agile framework, while also offering straightforward usability for those new to project planning using the Agile method. Take a look at our selection.
- monday.com – The perfect all-rounder for all types of projects
- Jira — Integrates an excellent Agile template
- Wrike — Great for beginners
- Nifty — Beautiful design, built with Agile teams in mind
- SpiraPlan — Loaded with plenty of Agile frameworks
- Pivotal Tracker — Offers excellent automation tools
Our selection can be broken down into three core points: usability, productivity and affordability. Each of the selected Agile project management tools offers an intuitive user interface, including Agile frameworks such as scrum and kanban boards, tools for team interaction and sprint planning.
You’ll also find common terminology, such as “epics” and “user stories” (another term for task management), making them ideal for software development.
Our aim is also to find project management tools that offer the best value for the money, without serving up a diluted product. There’s a price point for everyone in this selection, including some more than functional free options. Read our project management software pricing comparison guide to learn more.
The 6 Best Agile Project Management Tools
Considering our criteria, monday.com is our favorite Agile project management tool. It’s well-priced and offers several tools for Agile and other types of project management.
More details about monday.com:
- Pricing: Free plan; Standard plan costs $10 per month per user (billed annually)
- Website: monday.com
- Simple user interface
- Strong security
- Versatile plan structure
- Nothing to note
monday.com ranks number one in most of our project management categories because the service offers multiple approaches to managing projects while remaining easy to use, even for inexperienced users.
It comes packed full of features that aid in simplifying your project timeline. Kanban boards are available, as are Gantt charts, map views and a native calendar. Map view is especially useful for remote companies with an international team, as it allows you to see where each user is located and their local working hours.
The service also ranks high when it comes to security and privacy. monday.com states it won’t pass your data to third parties, and data will only be used to improve its services. The company is also SOC-2 Type II, which means its security processes have been investigated and verified as robust by a leading governing body.
While monday.com doesn’t offer a native scrum board, it is possible to set dependencies inside its other boards and views. The dependencies allow your Agile teams to identify what microtasks they need to complete to move forward with the project.
Dependencies also let you make note of which teams outside the core Agile squad need to offer input for you to make incremental progress with your tasks.
Again, monday.com is the project management all-rounder. So if you decide to mix up your approach to project management or prefer to apply different methodologies across different teams, you can be confident monday.com’s features can accommodate that. Plus the free plan and free trials on more advanced plans allow you to make sure it’s the right fit.
While it’s not purely Agile focused, the tools included certainly assist with completing Agile projects. However, if you want something that offers more Agile frameworks, keep reading as we have several options below. To learn more about monday.com check out our monday.com review.
- : Maximum users: 2, Kanban Board, & list
- : Minimum users: 3, Price per user, Basic features
- : Minimum users: 3, Price per user, Expanded features
- : Minimum users: 3, Price per user, Advanced features
- : Enterprise-level features.
More details about Jira:
- Pricing: Free plan; Premium plan costs $14.50 per user per month
- Website: atlassian.com
- Feature rich free plan
- Simple to use
- Software development features
- Too much jargon
Jira is part of the Atlassian family, the same family that includes the kanban board hero Trello (read our Trello review). Unlike Trello, Jira has tools that target Agile teams using terminology pertaining specifically to software development.
For users who like to use the lean Kanban methodology, Jira also offers a kanban board. It has a slightly different design than Trello, but it’s still a fantastic kanban board and has integrated features to help with real-time communication and identifying workloads as the project moves forward.
It’s worth mentioning that while Jira has dedicated Agile tools, it’s not just a solution for those using an Agile approach to project management. Jira is somewhat of an all-rounder and other tools such as Gantt charts are available through integrations. More than 3,000 app integrations allow you to customize your project management in a way that suits your objectives.
Dedicated Agile Project Management Software
Jira’s Agile solutions spring to life with its integrated scrum board. The scrum board has seven tabs that allow you to set “epics” (overall goals) and “user stories” so you can break down major goals into smaller tasks, aiding the development of your project.
While those implementing Agile project management are likely familiar with certain terminology, Jira lets itself down by overloading its product with jargon. Atlassian uses far too many made-up terms, and users spend too much time figuring out what they mean.
Bugbear aside, the company has made a quality product in the form of Jira, and it’s certainly an excellent Agile project management tool. The good news is that Jira’s free version has enough going on that you can get a good feel for the product without spending a dime. Also, if you want to learn more about Jira, check out our in-depth Jira review.
- : Max. 10 users
- : Annual price is for 10 users; with more than 10, annual pricing changes based on the number of users. Monthly pricing changes with teams over 100.
- : Annual price is for 10 users; with more than 10, annual pricing changes based on the number of users. Monthly pricing changes with teams over 100.
More details about Wrike:
- Pricing: Free plan; Business plan costs $24.40 per user per month
- Website: wrike.com
- Simple to use
- Solid free plan
- Strong Agile tools
- UI isn’t the most appealing
Like Jira, Wrike targets several project management methods, while including Agile tools for those who want them. You’ll gain access to Gantt charts, time tracking reports and form builders, should you need them. However, if you’re part of an Agile team, you can swiftly move past them and easily find what you’re looking for.
Luckily, Wrike has spent time developing information that can help you become accustomed to Agile methodologies. You’ll also learn why your team may need them and how they can help your Agile team implement Agile tools for more efficient workflows.
Wrike offers a dedicated teams dashboard that shows lists of the different types of work currently active. The project manager can prioritize tasks so team members know what work they should complete first.
Agile Project Template
Wrike becomes a dedicated Agile project management tool once you activate its Agile template. The template unlocks features that help your Agile team create “spaces” and subfolders, build product initiations through roadmaps and analyze project dashboards to keep on top of progress.
The Agile tools available with Wrike are perfect for managing sprints and prioritizing tasks to clean up backlogs, while also being the foundation for transparent communication and strong team collaboration.
Unlike Jira, which offers Agile tools on its free plan, users must pay extra for Wrike’s Agile tools. Although the pricing is reasonably affordable, we’d prefer to see basic tools for Agile project planning on the free plan.
If you ignore the less-than-attractive design, and fork out the cash needed to use Wrike’s Agile tools, the Agile project management software certainly does what you need it to do, and that’s the most important thing. You can take advantage of the 14-day trial on any of the plans, though. To learn more about Wrike, check out the full Wrike review.
- : Unlimited users. Basic features.
- : Price is per user. Plans for 5, 10 and 15 users.
- : Price is per user. No monthly option. Plans for 5 to 200 users.
- : Plans for 5 to an unlimited number of users.
More details about Nifty:
- Pricing: Free plan; Pro plan costs $79 per month for up to 20 users, billed annually
- Website: niftypm.com
- Beautiful design
- Excellent support
- Integrated document creator
- Performance can be sluggish
- No scrum board
Nifty is a task management tool that’s useful for both small task completion and long-term project planning. The best Agile practices include open and transparent communication, and Nifty has several communication tools that lets teams keep in contact at each step of the project.
There’s an integrated chat tool — similar in design to Slack, Microsoft Teams and Pumble (read our Pumble review) — and it allows you to develop threads and group chats so everyone knows about the progress of a task or overall goal. See our Hive review for another solution with a native messaging app.
With Nifty, the project manager can execute sprint planning and add start or end dates to specific milestones that help teams reach the conclusion of the project. Tools are also available for resource management so a project manager can look at workloads and allocate project tasks accordingly.
Integrated Document Development
Nifty is one of the few Agile project management solutions to include an integrated document development tool. The tool lets you take project and product discussions from the chat tool and embed them in a document. You can use the document as a project manifesto, if you will, and share it with multiple teams or specific team members.
We like Nifty a lot. We should also mention that it has an excellent customer support team that was quick and attentive to some general queries we made. The disappointment is that while it has kanban boards and other Agile software tools, it doesn’t have a dedicated scrum board — arguably the most popular Agile tool available.
If you can move past that, and enjoy using modern systems that function well (most of the time), then Nifty is a great Agile tool to go with. You can try the free plan or test out the more advanced plans with a 14 day free trial.
|Free||Free (unlimited users)|
|Starter||$39 per month (10 users), billed annually|
|Pro||$79 per month (20 users), billed annually|
|Business||$124 per month (50 users), billed annually|
|Unlimited||$399 per month (unlimited users), billed annually|
More details about SpiraPlan:
- Pricing: $50.40 per user per month on the one-year plan, with a minimum of three users
- Website: inflectra.com
- Plenty of tools
- Maybe too many choices
SpiraPlan is for those using Agile project management processes and nothing else. It comes stacked with tools that home in on Agile project development and that will help with approaches such as extreme programming (XP), scrum and kanban task management. Read our SpiraPlan review to learn more.
While Agile project management can feel overly technical, SpiraPlan has developed a user interface that’s straightforward to navigate and that will help users implement product development and task management with relative ease. However, the software isn’t perfect and some system crashes do happen when it becomes overwhelmed with data.
For those new to Agile methodologies, SpiraPlan has several articles that can help you become familiar with different tools and processes. If kanban boards and XP feel alien to you, the SpiraPlan knowledgebase helps with simple breakdowns and explanations of what they do and how you can use them for Agile project management.
QA Testing With SpiraPlan
Software development teams will understand the importance of continual product testing to ensure product completion times are on track. With SpiraPlan, you can use its quality assurance tool (QA) that’s designed to let you know instantly where you’re at with the product and what needs to continue or change to remain on track.
Users can implement both manual and automated QA testing, and the QA tool is fully customizable so you can program it in a way that matches your objectives and terminology.
In the world of Agile methodology, SpiraPlan has all the features to make it the number one Agile tool available today. The reason it isn’t our top choice is because of its cost.
Unlike monday.com, there’s no free plan, and the paid plans are expensive. Its pricing structure depends on how many users you add — as few as three and as many as 1,000 users. The more users you add, the lower the cost per user, though it remains expensive. However, it does offer a 30-day free trial on its plans.
If money isn’t a concern for you and your business, SpiraPlan, with its core focus on Agile, is certainly an excellent choice. We’d recommend it for more advanced users, but there’s enough support to get novices up to speed with Agile software.
|3 Users||$50.40, billed annually|
|10 Users||$47.52, billed annually|
|50 Users||$31.32, billed annually|
6. Pivotal Tracker
More details about Pivotal Tracker:
- Pricing: Free plan; Standard plan costs $5.42 per user per month on the annual plan
- Website: pivotaltracker.com
- Dedicated tool for Agile frameworks
- Good free plan
- Dated UI
- Only good for software development
In the world of Agile software development tools, Pivotal Tracker has all the ingredients to make it the best Agile tool for project managers and their entire team. The software integrates tools and terminology that software developers can instantly recognize, making it quickly apparent what type of team this Agile software is for.
Embedded in the software is a “story” development tool for backlog management, allowing teams to create small, easily actionable tasks and find potential bugs that may prevent them from achieving the project’s overall goal.
If you’re managing multiple projects, you can sort them easily with the workspaces tool. You can also use this tool to drag and drop “stories” between different projects. Read our full Pivotal Tracker review to learn more.
Every Agile tool has its own way of doing things, and it becomes clear that Pivotal Tracker recognizes that once you’ve signed up for an account. New users are welcomed with an educational video that shows you all of the tools available and how you can use them.
Use Velocity With Pivotal Tracker
An often unavoidable part of task management and project development is having to manually manage timelines and over commit to completion dates. Pivotal Tracker has its “velocity tracker,” which uses automated intelligence to analyze the average time taken to complete previous stories, then predicts the length of time it will take to complete active stories.
We really like Pivotal Tracker. One of the only things stopping it from being higher up on this list is that it’s really only applicable to development teams, and of course, they’re not the only industry to use Agile software tools.
However, if you are in the market for solutions that target software developers, then Pivotal Tracker is one of the best options for software teams. It doesn’t carry the best design, although it’s easy enough to use, and its velocity tracker will be a driving force to delivering timely products to your clients. You can try its free plan or use the 30-day trial on more advanced plans.
|Free||NA (0-5 users)|
|Start Up||$10 per month (6-10 users)|
|Standard||$6.50 per month (11+ users)|
|Enterprise||Contact sales for details|
Final Thoughts: Agile Project Management Software
If you came to this article because you want to improve things like backlog management, or you need a recommendation for a tool for managing projects and prioritizing tasks, we’re confident that all of the above solutions will help you achieve your desired goals.
monday.com is the best option for most types of users, and has additional project management features that allow your business to move away from the Agile framework and into other types of project management.
Above all, each of the Agile software tools we recommend will serve you well and help you improve communication, collaboration and task completion — all within the agile framework.
Which are your favorite Agile tools? Is there a specific software you would like us to review? What software did we miss in this article? Let us know in the comments. Thanks for reading.