Teams of varying sizes use Smartsheet to boost collaboration and manage workflows. Is Smartsheet’s spreadsheet format ideal for your software development team’s project management needs? Keep reading to find out, as we will discuss Smartsheet’s strengths, weaknesses, and pricing so you can see if it has the PM software features you are looking for.
What Are Smartsheet Project Management Software Pros And Cons
If you enjoy using traditional spreadsheet solutions like Excel and Google Sheets, then you will be pleased to know that Smartsheet offers a similar format. But unlike Excel and Google Sheets, Smartsheet comes packed with features that can help you manage multiple projects.
Here is a look at where Smartsheet excels and comes up short for developers and project managers of software teams.
What Are Smartsheet’s Pros?
As you are about to see, many features make Smartsheet an attractive PM software pick, especially for spreadsheet lovers.
Unlimited Flexibility for Project Managers
Although Smartsheet has many pros in its favor, we begin with what may be its top feature: flexibility. How flexible is Smartsheet? So flexible that it could be used to replace many business tools throughout your organization.
Similar to spreadsheets, this PM software solution lets you manipulate sheets around your needs. For instance, you can transform one sheet into a project management tool, while others handle campaign tracking, expenses, budget tracking, inventory management, and more. You can also make use of unlimited sheets and custom fields, plus multiple views.
With so many ways to mix and match, you can employ Smartsheet’s PM powers throughout your organization. And once you are finished, you can use it to replace other tools to streamline your processes and get everyone on the same page.
While this spreadsheet-style may not be for everyone, it is Smartsheet’s versatility and flexibility that could win many over, as there truly are no limits to how you use this PM software.
What is one of the biggest reasons why teams use project management software? To save time and boost efficiency, which is what Smartsheet can achieve through its bevy of automation tools.
You can find automation tools in many project management software offerings, but the ones found in Smartsheet are on another level. Whether you seek automation tools, connectors, integrations, intelligent workflows, etc., you will find them here. And while incredibly powerful, these tools are surprisingly simple to use.
Smartsheet has a drag-and-drop builder that makes it simple to generate time-saving automations within a matter of minutes. They do not have to be basic, either, as you can create advanced workflows with the builder since it uses basic logic, triggers, and conditional paths.
Smartsheet offers robust reporting that users, managers, and admins are sure to love. With just a few clicks or taps, you can consolidate essential data into a single report from multiple sheets. With such user-friendly reporting, Smartsheet makes it easy for teams to improve by pinpointing bottlenecks and trends.
While Smartsheet makes it easy to generate reports, it also simplifies sharing them with colleagues, employees in other departments, or stakeholders. And so you are always in the loop, Smartsheet also lets you see who accesses reports through its activity log.
Outdated information can render reports useless. To avoid this, Smartsheet updates report changes in real-time. If someone edits a report, you will see that instantly reflected on the attached sheets.
If you do not mind paying extra, Smartsheet gives you the option to extend the software’s functionality well beyond standard project management. And before you scoff at the thought of paying extra, know that it is a better option than having to buy another project management tool altogether.
Here are some add-ons and perks that Smartsheet offers for teams looking for more out of their PM software:
- Resource management
- Portfolio management
- Digital asset management
- Time tracking
- Project portfolio management
- Advanced reporting and analytics
- Project budgeting
- Forecasting tools
While Smartsheet markets itself as project management software, it also holds the title of “dynamic work and collaboration software.” Its features stay true to that title, as Smartsheet lets teams collaborate through tasks, notes, and file sharing, so nobody is left out of the loop.
If you need multiple team members working on a single project, they can do so by sharing PDFs, images, and presentations that come complete with version control, notifications, and customizable approvals. And speaking of customizable, Smartsheet’s collaborative features are just that. To avoid clutter, you can remove the collaborative features you do not need and keep the ones you do.
Smartsheet’s security is enterprise-grade, thanks to features like single sign-on, secure data centers, two-factor authentication, AES 256 bit at-rest encryption, and more. And while those features can keep unauthorized access at bay, Smartsheet can also ease your privacy and security compliance worries since it complies with HIPAA, FERPA, ISO, GDPR, ITAR, and SOC.
What are Smartsheet’s Cons?
Smartsheet has many features that make it worthy of being your top PM software choice. However, it does have some downsides, such as those listed below.
Spreadsheet-Based Project Management Tool
While spreadsheet fans will enjoy Smartsheet’s format, others may see it as restricting, especially those looking to implement certain project management methodologies. For example, since everything on Smartsheet is spreadsheet-based, agile teams wanting to use Kanban boards could feel left out.
Can you change views in Smartsheet? Sure, but at the end of the day, spreadsheets are the foundation here.
A Bit Of A Learning Curve
Even if you have experience using spreadsheets, you may find that Smartsheet takes some getting used to. The interface is not always viewed as intuitive, making it tough to chart and analyze data right out of the box.
You cannot analyze sheets on the spot. Instead, you have to sift through rows and columns manually, which can take a ton of time.
Activity Log Is Lacking
Smartsheet’s activity log lags behind those from other PM software. Yes, you can use it to see what has been shared and viewed, but it does not offer a quick overview of what has occurred since your last login. To get the info you desire, you will need to do some work that you may find tedious.
For example, suppose you want to look at a cell’s complete history. To get that information, you will have to navigate to the cell, right-click, and view the history versus seeing it in one quick shot.
On the surface, Smartsheet does not cost a pretty penny, as you can start with the Pro version for $7 per user, per month. However, when you compare what Smartsheet offers for that price compared to other PM software, it may come up short. In other words, Smartsheet may not give you the most bang for your buck, depending upon your software development team’s needs.
What is Smartsheet’s Pricing?
Smartsheet is offered via three pricing plans. The Pro plan is the cheapest at $7 per user, per month. It allows teams to manage, track, and collaborate with the PM software’s most essential features.
The Business plan is $25 per user, per month. It offers everything the Pro plan has, plus upgraded program, project, and process management features with unlimited automated workflows. The Business plan also allows for basic integrations with Skype, Slack, Microsoft Teams, etc.
Smartsheet’s final offering is the Enterprise plan, which has all of the PM software’s features, plus enhanced IT governance and administration. To get pricing for this plan, you will have to contact Smartsheet directly.
Smartsheet Project Management Alternatives
Looking for alternative project management tools and software for Smartsheet? Check out our list of the Top Alternatives to Smartsheet for more options.
You can also see how Smartsheet stacks up against Monday.com in our comparison: Smartsheet versus Monday.com.