Best Project Management Tools for Consultants

26-May 2022
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Chelsea Williams SENIOR COPYWRITER

Consultants tend to be heavily focused on solving clients’ problems. Going above and beyond for your clients requires a significant amount of research, critical thinking, data analysis and collaboration. 

As a consequence, you and your team may not have had the time to focus on the systems that need to be in place to support this heavy workload, nor considered project management to be one of the most important parts of your business.

However, there are significant benefits of intentional project management that apply to the consulting industry.

Why Your Firm Needs Project Management Software for Consultants

Your team is no doubt already managing plenty of projects, but like a lot of small businesses, you might be doing so in a piecemeal way. If you’re tracking tasks, time and progress in different places, or not at all, your firm could be missing out on helpful visibility— and profit potential.

When you implement a tech platform that’s specifically built for consulting firms, you can correct hidden inefficiencies, verify how your team is spending their time and improve the quality of client communication.

The list below can help you choose software to support your preferred project management methodology.

Top Consulting Project Management Tools

  1. Accelo
  2. BigTime
  3. ClickUp
  4. Scoro
  5. Trello
  6. Wrike

1. Accelo

Accelo is an end-to-end client work management platform built to help professional service businesses automate tasks, improve visibility and increase profits. 

While it includes robust project management, Accelo offers solutions for all stages of client work, including sales and quoting, customer relationship management, client support and tickets, billing and retainer management.

Key Features

  • Robust features not limited to project management
  • Retainer tracking to easily manage ongoing client relationships
  • Customizable workflow
  • Stream of recent activity for each client and project

Pros

  • Clear visibility of scheduling and employee utilization
  • Email capture supports consistent client communication 

Cons

  • Not ideal for businesses looking for solely project management (includes additional products to support entire client journey)
  • Customizable templates may not be suited for consulting firms that use a standard project format

READ NEXT: How These 4 Consulting Firms Use Accelo

2. BigTime

BigTime is a Professional Services Automation (PSA) software that offers businesses real-time insights into resource allocation. The platform makes it easy to manage projects, track billable time and generate detailed reports.

Key Features

  • Time tracking, invoicing and billing
  • Integrates with a wide range of commonly used tools
  • Custom reports and dashboards
  • Automatic scheduling recommendations based on availability

Pros

  • Option to assign tasks to multiple people
  • Built-in payment processing with BigTime Wallet

Cons

  • No granular view of project progress and budget
  • No free trial readily available

3. ClickUp

ClickUp is a modern project management platform that encourages collaboration with features such as whiteboards, Gantt charts and Kanban boards. It supports granular task management and tracking projects for various departments simultaneously. 

Key Features

  • Goal target tracking
  • Multi-layered approvals
  • Customizable views
  • Gantt charts and Kanban boards 

Pros

  • Usable for teams of fewer than five employees
  • Built-in apps for customizing task management

Cons

4. Scoro

Scoro is a systems-oriented project management platform that helps consulting firms and other professional service providers manage complex projects. It improves team productivity with customized project templates and ample integrations.

Key Features

  • KPI dashboard for simple goal tracking
  • Task bundles to cut down on project creation time
  • Multiple languages for invoices, quotes, contracts and more
  • Customizable templates for unique workflows

Pros

  • Useful for businesses that need the ability to automatically plan recurring projects
  • Best for businesses that value clear KPI visibility

Cons

  • More costly than some other project management tools
  • Not as customizable as some comparable software platforms

5. Trello

Trello is a user-friendly web-based software built around the Kanban method of project management. Collaborators communicate on task cards, which they can drag and drop to various customized lists as each task advances through the project process. 

Key Features

  • Multiple assignees per task card
  • Automated list movement and team assignments
  • To-do lists, images, files and comments on each task
  • Mobile app available for iPhone and Android

Pros

  • Free version with limited features
  • Good for non-tech-savvy users and remote teams

Cons

  • Not usable for teams whose workflows don’t work with the Kanban method
  • List views can become cluttered and confusing according to some users

6. Wrike

Wrike is a work management tool that consolidates internal and external communication for teams of all sizes. The interface provides at-a-glance project progress and tracks goal progress for multiple teams within an organization.

Key Features

  • Custom tags and fields
  • Robust and customizable reporting views
  • Supports cross-department collaboration
  • Shareable dashboards

Pros

  • Good for simultaneously managing both long- and short-term projects
  • Saves time when onboarding new employees

Cons

  • Users claim there’s a steep learning curve
  • Lack of audit capabilities could be problematic for large teams

Committing to Project Management Software

With many options to choose from, it can be overwhelming to decide which project management software is best for your consulting firm. And that’s just one tech adoption decision. Your business likely needs software to support every stage of your relationship with clients.

A client work management platform like Accelo could be the answer. If you’re ready to see what your workflow could look like without the confusion and expense of multiple platforms, get started with a free trial today.

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