What is one free/cheap team collaboration tool that you use at your startup and why?
To help your startup team collaborate effectively using the best free or cheap tools, we asked successful startup founders and business owners this question for their best picks. From Basecamp for project management and collaboration to Norton as an all-in-one tool, there are several team collaboration tools that are recommended to keep your startup seamlessly connected at little or no cost.
Here are 11 team collaboration tools that’ll keep your startup connected for cheap:
- Basecamp for Project Management and Collaboration
- Sync for Storing and Sharing Important Data
- ClickUp for Managing Team Projects and Tasks
- Flock Supports Wider Team Communication With Great Features
- Slack is Easy to Navigate and Integrates With Other Apps
- Trello is Great for Remote Team Work
- Microsoft Teams Helps Internal and External Communication
- Bit.ly is Clean and Makes Things Look Professional
- Asana is Great for Task Management and More
- Kumospace Offers Fun and Customizable Space
- Notion is an All-in-One Collaboration Tool
Basecamp for Project Management and Collaboration
I recommend Basecamp for project management for startups and small businesses. We use it for our agency and with all of our clients as well. It’s a cost-effective project management tool and gives us one centralized location to discuss all current and future projects, share files, and keep track of all email communication. This has become our way of ensuring we manage project timelines, assign ownership for accountability, and always have one place to track open items, so everyone is on the same page. I highly recommend looking into a project management tool because it will help you streamline your projects and ultimately improve your time to completion.
Elyse Flynn Meyer, Prism Global Marketing Solutions
Sync for Storing and Sharing Important Data
One free team collaboration tool that is a must-have for any startup is Sync. For storing, sharing, and accessing important data, Sync is a more affordable version of Dropbox. The other key differentiator: end-to-end encryption that ensures the highest level of security for your company’s data. Additionally, Sync automatically backs up all files for extra security and works across Windows, Mac, and Android systems.
Gigi Ji, KOKOLU
ClickUp for Managing Team Projects and Tasks
ClickUp is a team collaboration tool that we use at our company to manage our projects, tasks, and other important documents. ClickUp helps us stay organized and make sure everyone is on the same page with what’s going on. We love how simple it is to use—you can create your own lists and then add items to them by clicking on the list names. You can also assign tasks to team members and track progress towards completion. It’s easy to take notes, attach files, and even make comments on specific items if you need more information about what’s happening in the project.
Nick Cotter, Growann
Flock Supports Wider Team Communication With Great Features
In our company, we use Flock as an alternative to Trello. After years of using Trello, I need something that was set up to better support wider team comms, and not flood your inbox every time a simple action was performed within a card! Flock, in my opinion, completely outshines Trello on features and overall pricing structure. It’s certainly not perfect, but as a cheap alternative to people looking to try something different then it’s certainly worth checking out.
James Taylor, Digital Tool Report
Slack is Easy to Navigate and Integrates With Other Apps
Slack is one of the best team collaboration tools I’ve ever used. It’s free, easy to use, and it has a lot of features that make it super useful for teams.
I think Slack is a great tool because of its simplicity. The interface is clean and intuitive, which makes it easy to navigate even if you’re new to it. The app also integrates with a lot of other apps (like Google Drive, Office 365, etc.), which makes it easy for my team to share and collaborate on files and enhance the customized experience further.
Another reason why I like Slack is that it’s really easy to set up notifications so that you don’t miss any important updates from your team members. Packages are also affordable—you can get the free version or pay $6.67/month for an upgraded plan with additional features like screen sharing and video calls—but using Slack will still save you money compared with buying expensive tools for your business.
Tiffany Homan, Texas Divorce Laws
Trello is Great for Remote Team Work
My startup has been using a free version of Trello since it was first launched. It is a fantastic way for our teams to stay organized and have all the information and resources they need in one place. It is so useful to have clear checklists, due dates and tagging possibilities to collaborate efficiently.
Our company has been fully remote since 2015 and this is the tool that has permitted us to do so. Without it, tasks might get lost in emails or work chats. By having everything we need to focus on listed in Trello, we have visibility on where we are at and where we are going, as well as a way of tracking everything we’ve done to reach that spot.
Johan Hajji, UpperKey
Microsoft Teams Helps Internal and External Communication
The typical startup today has most, if not all, of its employees working remotely. Therefore, communication becomes critical to the success of the organization. As a manager in a startup, I demand communication from my employees, whether this be internal or external. I require a response to any communication within four business hours, even if it is a simple acknowledgment of the original message. Simple tools like Microsoft Teams can be extremely helpful here, for both internal and external communication. Zoom and other quick response media are also valuable, though can be more expensive.
Scott Kutos, iLab by Freddie Mac
Bit.ly is Clean and Makes Things Look Professional
Bit.ly, over 13 years old now, was one of the first to realize copying a long url, cut and pasted into a marketing or customer service email, created a ‘mess’ from email and SMS marketing communication standpoint. Their freemium product is still available and I still use it every day. Bit.ly not only made my start-up communications back then look more professional, the product gave me all the reasons to advance to the paid enterprise product, with deep analytics in real-time, on clicks, opens, branded links, and more. On my 4th startup in the last 20 years, now. Can’t live without it!
Ambrose Regan, CareerCaddy
Asana is Great for Task Management and More
One free/cheap team collaboration tool that we use at IWON is Asana. If you haven’t tried it, you should definitely check it out. It’s free for up to 15 team members. We use it to schedule out our social content and assign tasks to specific team members. Each task or calendar item can hold conversations and even allows us to upload artwork for review by the team. It has lists, boards, calendars, charts, and more. We love it.
Scotty Adams, IWON Organics
Kumospace Offers Fun and Customizable Space
At Potency No. 710, we utilize a unique team collaboration tool known as Kumospace for various reasons. Kumospace offers a fun, and customizable space for collaboration that can be utilized for many purposes aside from business team collaboration. This tool has been a very useful and fun one for us to utilize as we have custom designed the space to have a very chill and relaxed work environment. We also have rooms within our Kumospace where our lead aesthetician and Reiki master provides meditation and virtual reiki sessions. Last year we used the space to host meetings for members of the Potency No. 710 Social Wellness Society in which we brought in speakers, had Q&A sessions and much more.
Mandy Lile, Potency No. 710
Notion is an All-in-One Collaboration Tool
We use Notion to not only create and organize documents but also to keep track of and assign tasks using the kanban feature. When we have a new task to work on, we create a new tile that moves through our workflow from need, to start, to in-progress, to completed. Going through this workflow, we can also specify if the task is going well, off-track, or blocked, as a tag on the tile, giving each other insight into the work we’re all doing. Additionally, we use Notion to keep track of research and decisions in a longer format, which we can then post a TL;DR of and the Notion link for background context when we post in Slack.
Maxwell Bregman, BreatheEV