A big part of growth is knowing you need to change and adapt. Teams that take this to heart will know that even if their work gets done it doesn’t mean you can’t improve it or make it easier for employees. Business process management (BPM) software is designed to help you analyze business processes and understand what works, what can be better and what you can add. The software on this list can offer capabilities to help you on your improvement journey.
Top business project management software comparison
The table below shows whether the 4 software have some key features for BPM tools. The pricing is of course also a consideration and is based on the first paid plan regardless of whether they have a free plan or not.
|Software||Work views||Time tracking||Reporting||Automation||Pricing|
|Zoho Creator||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||$8 user/month|
Asana: Best for team insights
Asana is a feature-rich project management solution with advanced features for reporting and security. You can use their detailed progress capabilities to measure performance and determine team needs based on projects. The software can help you gain in-depth insights into workloads and make changes to current business processes from there.
- Basic: Free with unlimited tasks, messages and projects.
- Premium: $10.99 user/month, billed annually, or $13.49 user/month, billed monthly.
- Business: $24.99 user/month, billed annually, or $30.49 user/month, billed monthly.
- Enterprise: See sales.
- Unlimited projects, messages and file storage.
- Multiple work views include list, board, calendar, Gantt and due date views.
- Native time tracking in higher tiers or through other integrations in lower tiers.
- Custom templates, chart template library and workflow builder.
- Reporting for time tracking, progress view, goals and workloads.
- Through the rules and bundles features, you can automate routine tasks and update processes.
- Security features like multi-factor authentication and data loss prevention (DLP).
- Data visualization to track progress, deadlines and overall time of projects.
- Over integrates to help you incorporate your tech stack.
- Great for tracking changes and overall performance.
- Limits on reporting and integrations in lower tiers.
- Only paid plans have full security features and the Business plan has 24/7 support.
- Enterprise Plan is the only one to have advanced data protection and compliance.
Zoho Creator: Best for customization
If your team is looking for a BPM that allows you to tailor the application to your needs, Zoho Creator is a unique solution. Tech-savvy teams can use the low-code BPM tool to develop their ideal solutions for their business needs. It may not be suited for simple workflows and less technology, but it is awesome for complex data needs in BPM.
- Standard: $8 user/month, billed annually, or $12 user/month, billed monthly.
- Professional: $20 user/month, billed annually, or $30 user/month, billed monthly.
- Enterprise: $25 user/month, billed annually, or $37 user/month, billed monthly.
- Flex: Teams can contact sales to customize their subscription.
- One custom app per plan and unlimited custom apps for higher tiers.
- Work views like calendar, kanban, tasks, issues, milestones and Gantt charts.
- Access for mobile, desktop and tablet, as well as personal branding.
- Pre-made and custom AI models along with app templates to get started faster.
- Ability to connect with Zoho business suite and other third-party apps, and even make custom connections with preferred apps.
- Developer tools and advanced data analytics.
- Workflow automation for actions, analytics and approvals.
- Companies can create external user portals for clients, vendors or customers.
- Allows teams to create the missing app in their tech stack and improve current business processes.
- Importing and exporting data in all plan tiers.
- Ability to set workflow rules to ensure business processes run according to instructions.
- Strong learning curve.
- Requires tech-savvy skills and has its own scripting language, Deluge, similar to Python.
- Very expensive and the first tier only allows one custom app.
- The highest plan only has 5GB of storage.
ClickUp: Best for data visualization
One of the best project management tools for team workloads is ClickUp. Their software offers advanced work views, collaboration, automation and reporting options. Teams can streamline business processes with automation, monitor progress in dynamic views and manage employee resources with workload profiles in reporting.
- Free forever: Free with unlimited tasks, and members.
- Unlimited: $7 user/month, billed annually, or $10 user/month, billed monthly.
- Business: $12 user/month, billed annually, or $19 user/month, billed monthly.
- Enterprise: scaled for large teams, see sales.
- Multiple work views, including Gantt charts, mind maps, workloads, lists, calendars and more.
- Ensure business processes follow through with set task dependencies, basic and advanced automation and custom statuses.
- Reporting for milestones, sprints, workloads and time tracking.
- Over 50 native integrations, along with access to Zapier and Tableau Web Connector.
- Free plan accesses a selection of all ClickUp features and even basic automation.
- More affordable than dedicated BPM tools can still handle complex needs.
- Two-factor authentication for all tiers.
- Limited security and compliance options outside of the Enterprise plan.
- Limits across all tiers for automation, integrations and reporting.
For more information, read the full ClickUp review.
nTask: Best for time management
nTask is an affordable project management tool with an abundance of features to meet dynamic needs. They offer time management, multiple work views, remote collaboration and unlimited workspaces. You can track a variety of factors around business princesses while ensuring team progress.
- Basic: Free for 5 users with unlimited tasks and workspaces.
- Premium: $3 user/month, billed annually, or $4 user/month, billed monthly.
- Business: $8 user/month, billed annually, or $12 user/month, billed monthly.
- Enterprise: Offers advanced features and security, see sales for more.
- Multiple work views including list, grid, calendar, kanban and Gantt charts.
- Time tracking, timesheets and time estimates for project insights.
- User management, custom roles and task dependencies to ensure workflows are managed.
- Paid plans start with 5GB storage and go up to 100GB.
- Support features like 24/7 chat, onboarding, training and dedicated account managers depending on the plan.
- Teams can easily manage important processes with budget tracking, issue tracking and risk management.
- 24/7 support for all plans.
- All plans can access integrations, like Microsoft and Google Workspaces, as well as Zapier to extend available connections.
- The Basic and Premium tiers miss out on a lot of advanced features like dependencies and budget tracking.
- Extended onboarding and training are only included in the Enterprise tier.
For more information, read the full nTask review.
Jira Work Management: Best for both startups and Enterprises
Jira Work Management is a great solution for managing projects and complex business processes. You can use it for automation, data visualization, task management and reporting. Teams will absolutely be able to gain insights and manage business processes. Their Free plan has stacked capabilities to effectively use the tool for work or get a taste of the platform before buying.
If you’re looking to buy a paid subscription for less than 10 users, then you need a monthly plan. Annual pricing is for buying a minimum of 10 licenses that you can fill right away or expect to fill that year.
- Free: Allows 3 guests and unlimited customers.
- Standard: $5 user/month, billed annually, or $500 user/month, billed monthly.
- Premium: $10 user/month, billed annually, or $1,000 user/month, billed monthly.
- Work views such as timeline, list, calendar, board and summaries.
- Forms, business project templates and collaborative editing to improve content management.
- Reporting for status, statistics, progress and tasks.
- Automation for recurring tasks and bulk actions.
- Project roles and dependency management.
- Advanced security, like IP listing permissions.
- Storage starts at 2GB for Free which is more than most apps, and goes up to 250 GB in the next plan up.
- Ability to add branding and customize workflows in the Free plan.
- Encryption, disaster recovery and mobile device management in all plan tiers.
- Annual plans require 10 licenses and are very pricey for small teams.
- The learning curve to learn all the software capabilities.
For more information on Jira in general, read the full Jira Software review.
Key features of business process management
Business process management encompasses a variety of factors, but to find a great software, we’ve narrowed down some criteria to get started. Not every feature will be important to you, but most of them are offered by great BPM solutions.
One of the best ways to improve business processes is to streamline repetitive but important tasks by automating them. This way, you also ensure tasks will be completed either through automated alerts, scheduled meetings or reports. If you can sideline it to the conveyor belt, you can spend that time on harder tasks.
You can’t manage business processes if they aren’t completed in the right order. Task dependencies ensure teams know to wait on task delivery before moving on to the next phase. Some tools allow you to look at all dependent tasks in one place, and it can help you gain a deeper understanding of how your team functions.
Another important way to get insight into how your team functions is detailed reporting for progress, performance, time, budget, risks and more. While it sounds obvious, a good part of BPM is analysis. Knowing your work from different perspectives will help you understand critical parts that may not be obvious.
For example, a team might switch to software without color-coded notifications and automated scheduling and suddenly find their team interprets notifications wrong and forgets to schedule important meetings. It’s actually really hard to know which small parts of your workflow are integral. That’s why, through reporting, you can pay attention to changes in progress after switching software or trying a new work style.
We all know that time is everything, but when it comes to BPM it’s an indicator for performance. If you’re able to optimize the time spent on workflow, then you can make room to rearrange your work model and consider new opportunities.
Time tracking and estimations can help you predict, measure and analyze your team from all sorts of perspectives. For example, if approvals average one to three months but the time it takes to actually do them is an hour, it means your managers are overbooked.
While work visualizations are one of the more common project management features, they are for a big reason. With in-depth views like Gantt charts for timelines and due dates, management teams can stay on track. Filtering through work progress, employee status, milestones and deadlines is also important for decision-making. Your team can’t operate cohesively if they can’t take each other’s needs into account.
How do I choose the best business process management software for my business?
When looking for a BPM solution, you need to know exactly what you want to manage. You can choose a solution advertised for business process management systems or find project management and work management tools with advanced automation, reporting and data visualization.
Maybe you don’t know what processes you want to analyze, monitor, improve or streamline. Software with advanced reporting can give you a macro view of your business workflow and future needs.
Tools like Asana, monday, ClickUp and Jira all have great reporting options. You can also use them for project management while you take your time to look for points of improvement in your team. It’s a huge benefit to ask your team about any issues or processes that feel outdated.
You may find you need something you can personalize, so Zoho Creator will be worth considering, but it’s very expensive. nTask will also be great for testing out for time, budget and risk processes you want to dive into.
Many of the business process management systems on this list have free plans you can test out before making a big purchase. We highly recommend taking advantage of that before committing to several months of onboarding.
The software were chosen according to whether or not they had important features for BPM such as tools for monitoring, tracking and reporting. Anything to give businesses a deeper understanding of how they operate. From there, having features to help make changes and improve current workflows is important. Each software on this list has tools to learn and make needed changes.
Cost and whether or not they had free plans were also considered. BPM features tend to be advanced and can get very costly, but most of the solutions listed have a free version. Popularity with users and intuitive learning were also considered, but with the understanding that feature-rich solutions will all have some sort of a learning curve.