Project ManagementBacklog vs Trello Project Management

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Backlog and Trello are two project management tools that can keep your development team on track. We will review Backlog and Trello in terms of their features, pricing, strengths and weaknesses, and differences so you can see how they stack up against one another.

Backlog Features

Backlog Task Management

Backlog is project management software used by over 18,000 companies worldwide. The all-in-one tool combines project management, code management, bug tracking, collaboration, and more so that development teams can plan less and do more. Backlog’s features include:

  • Kanban boards
  • Gantt charts
  • Advanced task management
  • Built-in messaging tools
  • Bug tracking and issue tracking

Backlog’s features begin with its Kanban boards and Gantt charts help visualize progress and prioritize tasks. Developers can create new tasks, offer feedback, edit, and more without leaving their code. Complex parent tasks can be split into subtasks to make work less daunting, and project managers can assign subtasks to team members to ensure everything gets finished on time. Once a new task is assigned, the relevant team member will receive a notification. The same holds true if they have been mentioned in a comment.

Backlog Collaboration Tool

Diving deeper into Backlog’s features, we come across its collaborative capabilities. The PM software avoids the need for separate messaging apps or slow email by letting developers leave feedback, comments, questions, and more directly in Backlog. There are wikis for sharing and editing essential information, plus the aforementioned notifications to keep everyone in the loop. File sharing is another collaborative feature in Backlog, and if you need more functionality, you can get it via third-party integrations with Slack and other apps.

Backlog Issue Tracking

Backlog also makes bug tracking seamless. Developers can use Backlog to spot, assign, prioritize, track, and fix bugs without leaving the software. It offers version control, too, so developers can track code changes with ease.

Backlog Pricing

Backlog has several pricing options, which include:

  • Free: Up to 10 users
  • Starter: $35 per month for up to 30 users
  • Standard: $100 per month for unlimited users
  • Premium: $175 for unlimited users and projects
  • Enterprise: $1,200 per year for 20 users, hosted on a private server

Its Free plan is geared towards small projects and allows up to 10 users. The Starter plan aims at growing teams with up to 30 users and costs $35 per month. Mid-sized companies can turn to the Standard plan, which Backlog prices at $100 per month for unlimited users.

Larger companies, meanwhile, can subscribe to the Premium plan for $175 per month. It allows for unlimited users and projects. If you need to host Backlog on your private server, you can do so through the Enterprise plan that also allows for unlimited projects. Enterprise plan pricing starts at $1,200 per year for 20 users.

Backlog Strengths And Weaknesses

Backlog’s strengths begin with its user-friendliness. The project management software is intuitive enough that even beginners can get started without much study.

Backlog excels in bug, issue, and project tracking, and its responsive Gantt charts are a joy to use and customize. Integrating Slack for added messaging power is a cinch, and developers needing to work on the go will find the Backlog mobile app to be more than sufficient. And, for those project managers and dev teams working with a limited budget, Backlog’s free plan is excellent, and its premium plans are quite varied and affordable.

Where could Backlog see improvement? Moving issues from project to project could be easier, as could working with different types of tasks and subtasks. Time tracking for subtasks could improve too. And some feel that Backlog should offer more file storage.

You can learn more by reading our Backlog Project Management Software Review.

Trello Features

Trello PM Tools for Developers

Over 2,000,000 teams use Trello worldwide to get more work done. What is Trello known for? Its Kanban board that lets developers visualize progress and manage tasks with drag-and-drop functionality. While somewhat basic, this easy-to-use Trello foundation makes the project management software so popular. Smaller teams seeking a tool that is easy to adapt may flock to Trello, even though it may not offer the most features on the market. Whether you need to onboard new team members or start a new project, Trello makes it possible with just a few clicks.

Trello features include:

  • Kanban boards
  • Workflow automation
  • Excellent mobile app
  • @mentions and collaboration tools
  • Third-party integrations

Workflow automation is another Trello highlight worth mentioning. Dubbed Butler, Trello’s automation system lets developers set up rule-based triggers and desired actions with ease to save time on menial tasks. Answer a few questions, and Butler will complete the configuration process.

Trello PM Tools

Many developers need to work on the go or from remote locations. Trello makes it possible with a solid mobile app that offers nearly all the functionality you get via desktop at no extra cost. What about collaboration? Trello offers that too, either at your office or on the go via @mentions, comments, notifications, and document sharing. And, if you already have a collaboration tool you want to stick with, Trello will let you do just that with its Power-Ups and integrations that we will touch on in a minute.

Those who find Trello a bit bare out of the box will be glad to know that you can extend its functionality through Power-Ups and integrations. There are Power-Ups for analytics, automation, collaboration, file management, reporting, etc. Some of these most widely-used Trello “superpowers” include Slack, Jira, Gmail, and more.

Trello Pricing: How Much Does Trello Cost?

Trello includes the following pricing tiers:

  • Free Limited features
  • Standard: $5 per user, per month
  • Premium: $10 per user, per month
  • Enterprise: Contact sales team for pricing

Trello’s pricing begins with a Free plan for teams or individuals looking to stay organized. Move up to the Standard plan built for small teams seeking advanced collaboration, and you will pay $5 per user, per month. Trello’s Premium plan comes with extra tracking and visualization via calendars, timelines, and boards for $10 per user, per month. And its Enterprise plan offers added security and controls for larger teams for a custom price that varies according to team size.

Trello Strengths And Weaknesses

When it comes to task management and collaboration, Trello is sufficient. The PM software has a simple interface and is easy to use, plus its free version is enough for individual developers or smaller teams seeking basic capabilities for staying organized and in touch. Trello’s automation is a time-saver, too, although it is less complex than what you will find in other project management solutions. Add in the Power-Ups and integrations, and Trello has plenty of pluses in its favor.

Where Trello falls short is its feature set for managing complex projects or larger teams. The software can work for simple task management and project visualization for teams with linear plans in mind. For many Agile teams and software developers tasked with complex projects, though, they may find themselves yearning for more functionality in the form of roadmaps, the ability to review iterations, attaching tasks to subtasks, etc. And as projects get bigger and more complex, using Trello can become complicated or even chaotic to look at.

Project managers may find Trello lacking in terms of out-of-the-box reporting and analytics. This could make it harder for them to share progress with stakeholders or make adjustments on the fly. You can get reporting and other bells and whistles via Trello Power-Ups, but that is a basic feature with many other PM software solutions.

Trello’s views are also a disadvantage. The Kanban boards are great for simpler projects, but those with a lot of moving parts could benefit from more views.

You can learn more by reading our Trello Project Management Tool Review.

Backlog And Trello Differences

Backlog and Trello differ in many ways. Backlog offers a more complete set of features out of the box that includes many things Trello lacks, such as bug tracking, wikis, file management, reporting, etc. While Trello relies heavily on the Kanban board view, Backlog offers more customizable views to visualize progress, such as Gantt charts, burndown charts, and more.

Can Trello be more competitive versus Backlog once you add Power-Ups and integrations into the picture? Sure, but for those seeking full-fledged functionality from the start, Backlog is the winner. And, as for pricing, Backlog can be surprisingly cheaper than Trello once you venture into premium plan territory. For 30 users, Backlog can cost $35 per month under its Starter plan. Trello’s Premium plan costs $300 per month for that same amount of users.

Backlog vs. Trello: The Verdict

Even though Backlog has many more features, some may steer towards Trello since it is so simple. If your development team sees many complex projects in its future, Backlog is the better pick since it is more of an all-in-one tool. But if you just need a basic solution for managing tasks and staying on track with your small team, Trello may suffice, even with its free version.

Other Project Management Software for Developers

Not certain Backlog or Trello are the right project management tool for your software development team or remote programmers? We have several round-ups of popular PM tools below to help you choose the right PM solution:

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