ClickUp is a cloud-based, all-in-one project management tool suitable for companies of all sizes and industries. It helps teams centralize work in one place while improving productivity and efficiency within the workplace. Some of ClickUp’s standout features include task management, customizable templates, capacity planning, external collaboration, resource management, and more. Its workspace is entirely customizable, giving users full rein over the way they work. Although not purpose-built for it, ClickUp can also be adapted for Agile project management.
On the other hand, ClickUp’s versatility and rich feature set may prove complicated for some, requiring new users to invest time into learning the software. For teams and team members that already have experience with project management software, ClickUp is a strong choice for managing projects and optimizing workflows.
In this ClickUp review, we will explore project management features, pricing, ease of use, customer support, add-ons, and more.
What is ClickUp?
Developed by Mango Technologies, Inc., ClickUp is a project management software suitable for all working styles and is designed to replace and consolidate all other tools into one platform. It was founded by Zeb Evans and Alex Yurkowski in 2017, after failing to find a project management solution that could meet their needs. Most project management software on the market either offered too little or too much, so Evans and Yurkowski set out to create a tool with the right amount of features. They released ClickUp in 2017 and raised $35 million in a Series A funding round in June 2020.
Despite being a new player on the market, ClickUp is used by over 100,000 teams worldwide, including Google, Airbnb, Nike, and Uber.
Facts and Figures
|Founder||Zeb Evans, Alex Yurkowski|
|Headquarters||San Diego, California, USA|
ClickUp Project Management Features
Branded as the “one app to replace them all”, ClickUp provides a multitude of tools and features targeted at helping teams improve efficiency while juggling projects. Besides visualizing project data in several ways, teams can build custom workflow automations, create task dependencies, and collaborate with teammates using the in-built chat or via the discussion feature. Project managers can also monitor the team’s workloads and distribute tasks proportionally to team members’ capacities. With Kanban boards and custom forms, ClickUp is also appropriate for Agile frameworks such as Scrum and issue-tracking.
With ClickUp, teams can plan and manage projects using List, Board, Calendar, and Box views. Teams can create a project from scratch or choose one from ClickUp’s template collection. ClickUp’s workflow automations also reduce unnecessary labor, leaving users with more time to focus on work that matters. Finally, project managers can track team performance using seven different kinds of reports, including the Task Completed report and Time Estimated report.
The Gantt chart is a handy tool to utilize when visualizing complex project timelines that span months and years. ClickUp’s Gantt view is expandable to view all task hierarchies, including folders and lists. Teams can also draw lines between tasks to automatically set dependencies, drag and drop tasks to the timeline to set start and finish dates, and color-code tasks to indicate its status or priority. When a task’s duration or due date is updated, ClickUp automatically reschedules all subsequent tasks in the chain.
On the Business and Enterprise plans, teams also have the option of calculating the critical path and slack time of any project.
ClickUp’s Board view functions similarly to a Kanban board, where work items contained within cards can be dragged from one column to another to change its status. In ClickUp, project managers can quick-create tasks, add multiple assignees, adjust due dates, add tags, and filter cards by various labels. The Multitask Toolbar also allows teams to make bulk edits, making changes to many tasks all at once. Each task has its own unique task ID so it can be easily identified and shared with others.
Besides the Board and Gantt views, ClickUp features two additional ways of visualizing a project: List and Box views. While the List view displays tasks in a list format and provides a summary of all tasks within the workspace, the Box view captures the team’s performance and insights into a box format. The Box view also functions as a dashboard where project managers can view workload charts, time estimates, and even Agile and Scrum points.
Additionally, ClickUp offers pre-built templates to help teams dive into their projects right away. The templates range from software development to marketing to design. Teams can also create their own project and tasks templates, saving them for future use.
With ClickUp’s workflow automation feature, teams can mix and match various triggers and actions to automate repetitive tasks, leaving them more time to focus on meaningful work. Some automation examples include automatically assigning tasks to team members, changing a tag on a task when its priority changes, setting up task notifications, and more. Teams can select a ready-made automation from ClickUp’s workflow repository or create their own. Automations can be toggled on and off, edited or deleted at any time.
ClickUp also supports workflows with external applications such as Bugsnag, GitHub, Twilio, and Calendly.
Keeping an eye on the team’s workload, performance, and progress is possible through ClickUp’s Reporting and Portfolio features. Project managers can generate up to seven reports, each focusing on a different team metric. For example, the Tasks Completed report displays each person’s tasks and how much time was spent on each task. The Time Estimated report views time as a team resource for planning projects. It also includes a time indicator that determines if teams are on track to meeting their project milestones and deadlines.
However, teams should note that the Reporting and Portfolio feature will soon be replaced by Dashboards, a tool that enables teams to customize their own high-level views of workspace activity.
Communication & Collaboration
ClickUp’s collaboration tools keep teams in sync and productive, no matter if team members are working side by side or across vast distances. Unlike most project management software, ClickUp offers a dedicated messaging tool that supports rich text formatting and file attachments. Team members can start discussions right within a task, take notes in a private notepad, or upload files. By tweaking permissions settings, team leaders can also provide clients with customized access to projects.
ClickUp features a Chat view that allows teams to talk about items unrelated to specific tasks in any view or location within ClickUp. Project managers can start a chat with a team member or a department - there are no limitations to who can or cannot be added to a conversation. Chat view also supports rich text formatting, file attachments, and task links. The chat updates in real-time, so chat followers will be notified when there is new activity.
Team members can upload files to ClickUp in the task and comment sections, keeping them centralized and on the record. It is also possible to rename file attachments, copy links to attachments, and preview attachments. Teams on the paid plans can connect with external file-sharing platforms such as Google Drive and Dropbox to ClickUp, making uploading bigger files possible.
On the Free Forever plan, teams have access to 100MB of file storage, whereas teams on the paid plans enjoy unlimited file storage.
Folders, lists, and tasks in ClickUp can be made private, making it easy for teams to share relevant information with clients while maintaining privacy. Team leaders can also assign the guest role to clients and customize a range of permissions settings for them. Guests in ClickUp will have a simplified view of the workspace and be able to utilize several ClickUp features such as inbox, favorites, and customized notifications.
Furthermore, ClickUp supports image and PDF proofing, so clients can provide comments and feedback directly on documents without needing to be a workspace member.
Teams can keep project discussions and feedback in context by adding comments directly to tasks. Teams can also assign a comment to a team member and convert it into an actionable task item, thread replies to a comment, quote comments, and provide useful information to a comment by formatting it with markdown. It is also possible to attach files, tag team members, use emojis, mention another task, and share the comment link with others.
ClickUp’s note-taking feature allows users to jot down notes and private thoughts before converting them into a task item. Once the Notepad is enabled, users can activate rich text editing with the /Slash command, adding headers, bold font, images, and more. Users can also view the note’s history, enter full-screen mode, use the search function to find a keyword, and print the note in a visually appealing format.
Resource Allocation & Planning
ClickUp helps project managers keep resources in check by providing resource planning tools and metrics. While users can track time spent on time, project managers can ensure equal workloads for team members by keeping an eye on their capacities. Team leaders can also calculate expenses using the Formula Fields function.
Users can track time spent on tasks using ClickUp’s timer or via a time-tracking integration such as Harvest or Everhour. Start and stop a timer while working on a task, or simply enter a time entry in a timesheet, complete with notes, labels, and billable hours. Project managers can also edit time entries.
However, exporting timesheets for billing and invoicing purposes can only be achieved via third-party integrations.
ClickUp’s Formula Fields enable teams to quickly set up a budget without punching numbers into a calculator. With over 70 different formula functions, teams can calculate project budget, expenses, invoices, and claims using simple and advanced formulas. For example, project managers can set up a “Hours Worked” field and a “Hourly Cost” field, leaving ClickUp to multiply the two fields together to derive the total cost.
Project managers can monitor the team’s workload capacity using the Workload view, available as a ClickApp. Team leaders can set the number of hours and tasks each team member has in a day and allocate points to tasks. Points can be assigned in proportion to the size of the task. Teams on the Enterprise plans can also customize capacities per day and view effort totals for other group types such as status and tag. This capacity planning tool allows team leaders to distribute work equally, avoiding an over or under commitment of employee resources.
Teams that use ClickUp can take advantage of the Timeline view, which is a linear way of visualizing schedules over time. While grouping by assignee enables project managers to view tasks per person and how much work a team member has in a day, grouping by priority reveals overlaps in tasks so that team leaders can shuffle work items around for a fairer work distribution.
Agile Project Management
Be it planning sprints or tracking bugs, development teams can develop Agile workflows right within ClickUp. ClickUp offers IT teams Kanban boards and the Sprint ClickApp, as well as a custom form feature suited for capturing issues and bugs. Project managers can also take stock of team performance using charts such as sprint velocity, sprint burndown, and more.
Engaging in Scrum practices is possible through ClickUp's Kanban boards and the Sprint ClickApp. Kanban boards can be converted into Scrum boards by renaming columns and setting up priority labels. With the Sprint ClickApp, Agile teams can also create sprints, add sprint dates and statuses, manage spillover tasks, and estimate the total amount of work in a sprint.
Teams can likewise create sprint automations to automatically mark sprints as done and move unfinished tasks to the next sprint.
Using ClickUp’s Forms feature, teams have the opportunity to keep track of bugs and issues submitted by their product users. Teams can utilize various field types, including task name and description, or create their own custom fields. Forms can also be edited to reflect the company’s branding, embedded via HTML code, or exported as a CSV file.
Being a highly flexible and customizable tool, ClickUp is well-suited for IT project management and facilitates Agile workflows such as Scrum and Kanban. Teams can manage sprints using the Sprints ClickApp, create folders to categorize and house different projects and tasks, and create the perfect workflow to build a product from start to finish.
The Automations and Sprint Widgets, available on the Business plan and up, are ideal tools for Agile reporting. The Sprint widget generates charts such as sprint velocity, sprint burndown, and cumulative flow. All charts provide a detailed analysis of the team’s performance and identify areas for improvement.
ClickUp offers a free plan and three value for money paid plans. The free plan is a great choice for solo professionals, whereas the Unlimited and Business plans are suitable for small to medium-sized teams. Large teams and organizations should opt for the Enterprise plan and receive a custom quote from ClickUp.
On the free plan, users receive access to unlimited users, tasks, spaces, 100MB file storage, as well as 24/7 support and 1-day activity view. Teams on the Unlimited and Business plans unlock greater benefits such as custom fields, edit permissions, Map and Box views, and more. The Enterprise plan offers a dedicated account manager, priority support, and custom onboarding and training.
On an annual subscription, teams receive a 45% discount, whereas nonprofit organizations are entitled to a 35% discount.
Note that these pricing lists are simplified for the purposes of this ClickUp review. For more information, visit the ClickUp pricing page.
Safeguarding user data is a top concern for ClickUp and its goal is to provide a secure environment, while being mindful of application performance and the overall user experience. Data in transit is encrypted with 256-bit SSL, whereas data at rest is encrypted using AES-256. ClickUp also holds a number of security and compliance certifications, including GDPR, SOC 2, HIPAA, and the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Framework.
ClickUp servers are hosted by Amazon Web Services, which houses its facilities in monitored secure locations. The data centers are armed with a variety of physical controls to prevent unauthorized access, including 24/7 video surveillance, biometric access, activity logs, and more. ClickUp also adheres to the PCI framework, abiding by stringent protocols for storing, processing, and transmitting credit card information online.
Last but not least, ClickUp also supports two-factor authentication and Single Sign-On procedures for teams on the Business plan and up.
ClickUp boasts a broad range of over 50 popular integrations, including:
- Google Drive
- Microsoft Teams
Touted as the one app to replace other tools, ClickUp’s user interface is packed with easy to use and intuitive features. Unlike other project management tools that only feature a single view, ClickUp allows multiple views organized by tabs at the top, ensuring that users can toggle back and forth depending on what they are working on at the moment. For example, users can work on a task while keeping their chats, timelines, and documents open in the background and switch to them whenever needed.
ClickUp also features a sidebar navigation on the left, containing projects, notifications, inbox, settings, and more. Projects have dropdown menus and can be color-coded for easy access. Team members can also customize their workspace to optimize workflows, pinning important projects at the top.
Overall, ClickUp has a pleasant and modern interface, yet the number of features might be overwhelming for new users and some learning time is required to master the tool completely.
In addition to the web and desktop apps, ClickUp is also available as an iOS, Android, or Amazon Fire mobile app. Teams can work on projects and tasks, make notes, share files, and add comments on the go. Nonetheless, due to the size limitations of a mobile screen, the ClickUp mobile app is unable to display as much information as the web or desktop app. For complex projects, teams might find it more efficient to tackle tasks on the web or desktop app.
ClickUp also integrates with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, enabling users to utilize voice commands to boost productivity.
ClickUp offers several support channels designed to help customers resolve and troubleshoot issues. They include:
Knowledge base: ClickUp’s help center is divided into sections such as use cases, features, and integrations. Users can also search by keyword to locate written and video tutorials.
Blog: Teams can check out ClickUp’s blog to read helpful articles and infographics about project management, Agile working, and much more.
Direct support: ClickUp has a great customer support team, available to help with queries via email and live chat. The live chat button is located at the bottom right of every ClickUp page and displays a timer that counts down to when the ClickUp team will be online next.
ClickUp is a comprehensive project management solution fitted with a robust suite of features, ranging from task management to resource management. However, companies looking for a less powerful tool may consider:
As far as project management software goes, ClickUp is a relatively new option. It offers teams a diverse range of features, including a variety of project views, workflow automations, collaboration tools, customizable templates, and more. It was created for all user types and empowers teams with the right tools to manage their projects, while providing them with an interface that is customizable and adapts to different workflows. Teams can complete tasks, track time, calculate project expenses, and collaborate with clients all within ClickUp.
On the other hand, ClickUp’s wealth of features may initially prove too complicated and overwhelm new users. Some learning time is required before users become familiar with ClickUp’s interface and use it to its full ability.