MeisterTask Pros and Cons
MeisterTask is a web-based project management software that is best suited for small to medium businesses. It has an intuitive interface that provides a useful overview of all projects, using Kanban boards to make it simple to organize projects, manage tasks, and track progress. Users can create automated workflows to increase efficiency, and teams have many customization options to configure their boards as they like.
MeisterTask features do not include budget tracking and capacity management, so businesses may have to look at other project management software options if this is essential. While this shouldn’t pose a big problem for small businesses, larger companies might want to consider one of many other project management tools. MeisterTask also does not have in-built messaging; however this can be supplemented by integrations with a tool such as Slack.
In this MeisterTask review, we will explore project management features, pricing, ease of use, add ons, and more.
What is MeisterTask?
MeisterTask is a project management tool by MeisterLabs GmbH, with over 3 million users to date. Founded in 2006 by Michael Hollauf and Till Vollmer, MeisterLabs soon launched an easy-to-use mind-mapping software named MindMeister in the following year. In 2015, the company released MeisterTask as their take on project management software. The company now employs around 50 employees with offices in Munich, Vienna, and Seattle.
Facts and Figures
|Founder||Michael Hollauf, Till Vollmer|
|CEO||Michael Hollauf, Till Vollmer|
MeisterTask Project Management Features
MeisterTask offers an extensive list of project management features. The software uses Kanban boards to help teams visually plan multiple projects and monitor tasks. While MeisterTask offers Agile project management features, teams that rely on Agile methods may feel that other project management software would be better suited. Communication features include notes, file sharing, discussions, and external collaboration, although an instant messaging tool is not natively available. Resource management is also rather limited, with missing features for budget management and capacity planning.
MeisterTask’s project planning dashboard makes it simple to manage several projects simultaneously. This dashboard provides an overview of projects, tasks, and notifications which helps teams stay on top of their work and prevents the information from getting lost.
MeisterTask features a timeline function that serves as its own interpretation of a classic Gantt chart. Tasks are displayed in a calendar view and can be assigned or moved directly to the timeline. The color also shows the status of the tasks. It is not possible to visualize correlations between each task.
MeisterTask takes full advantage of Kanban, using cards and columns to manage tasks. For example, a project could be structured as columns named ‘Open,’ ‘In Progress,’ ‘Review,’ and ‘Done’. From here, users can track tasks as they progress from one stage to another. Another practical aspect is that each card can have a checklist that provides more structure to work. The Kanban board is easy to use and navigate via drag and drop.
Task management works with easy-to-use cards in this software. Each card represents a task in MeisterTask, which contains all the task details, such as the description, due date, comments, and attachments. Adding followers to cards sends automatic notifications about any changes to project tasks. Custom fields for projects can be set up to remind team members to review and add specific information within each task.
MeisterTask simplifies workflow management with team members handling different types of tasks. Both project managers and users can set up recurring tasks to save time and can create streamlined and automated workflows. Automated workflows are available from the Pro plan and increase efficiency within existing processes by automatically assigning tasks to team members. Due dates and checklists can also be created and updated automatically.
Statistics and Reports provide project managers with team performance and productivity. Managers can see which tasks are taking employees the longest, review progress, and keep track of how much time they spend working on which tasks. It is not possible to assign tasks as milestones.
Communication & Collaboration
Communication features are not as elaborate in this software compared to competitors. Team members can share files, leave comments, and collaborate effectively, especially with external guests and partners. Notifications pop up directly in each user's dashboard whenever new tasks get added or completed.
Users can add files to the task cards from their desktop or as an attachment from Google Drive, Dropbox, or Box. A shared file collection where team members can view all files in one place is not available in this software. MeisterTask also lacks a search function to find specific files, which can make searching for individual files a rather time-consuming task.
Users can add comments to each task card and directly start a discussion within the relevant task. The activity log shows the newest comments first, which can sometimes make it difficult to follow discussions that have occurred over longer periods of time.
Users can create a personal or project related checklist on their dashboard or leave notes there. While useful, this is better suited for creating to-do lists and less for more extensive note-taking.
Resource Allocation & Planning
MeisterTask provides in-built time-tracking and scheduling functions to plan work more efficiently. While other project management software offer budget management and capacity planning, these are lacking in MeisterTask. Teams looking for these functions should consider alternative software instead.
Team members can enter the start and end time in the provided fields, providing them with visibility over the total amount of time spent working on tasks. Time-tracking is available through a virtual stopwatch showing users exactly how much time they are spending on a task in real-time. Entries can be edited afterward.
Scheduling is easy with MeisterTask, as each task can be assigned start and due dates. The timeline function also provides a good overview of pending tasks and upcoming deadlines. Tasks are easily rearrangeable via drag and drop on the timeline.
Agile Project Management
MeisterTask uses Kanban boards, allowing teams to use elements of Agile methodology in their projects. Its flexibility also makes MeisterTask a good option for cross-team collaboration. However, teams who rely extensively on Agile project management (such as software developers) may want to consider alternative software.
Since MeisterTask is a Kanban-based tool, teams can customize the boards and use them as Scrum boards. Scrum practices such as sprint planning, user stories, and backlog are possible by renaming the columns. Project managers can also assign priority statuses to cards by color-coding them and filter them with labels.
MeisterTask offers a free plan with limited features, as well as three paid plans. The free version includes a solid set of features such as task management, time tracking, and unlimited members within three projects. Smaller businesses may find this enough for their purposes, while larger organizations should consider the Pro and Business plans for more features.
The pricing for Pro and Business plans are calculated per user, per month. MeisterTask also becomes up to 17% cheaper than the monthly subscription price when choosing a yearly payment plan. Companies with more specific needs can opt for the Enterprise plan, which offers tailored pricing and a more personalized solution that includes a dedicated account manager.
Note: these pricing lists are simplified for the purposes of this MeisterTask review. For more information, visit the MeisterTask pricing page.
MeisterTask takes privacy and security seriously. They protect their users through the following ways:
They provide a 99.9% service-level agreement for all paid accounts.
Regular data backups are performed and data is stored in multiple off-site locations.
All accounts use a 256-bit Secure Socket Layer (SSL) encrypted data transfer between the user and MeisterTask.
All projects are private by default, so users can decide whether to make them public or share them.
Two-Factor Authentication is available.
MeisterTask handles all data appropriately following EU-GDPR rules.
Users on the Basic plan can choose two integrations per account, while those on the paid plans can use an unlimited amount. MeisterTask works especially well in conjunction with MindMeister, a mind mapping software by the same company.
Some of MeisterTask shortcomings such as the lack of in-built messaging can be supplemented by software such as Slack, or a support tool like Zendesk. Zapier integrations grant project managers with access to a huge variety of other integrations, such as:
- Google Drive
- Google Calendar
- Microsoft Teams
MeisterTask has a simple, clear interface that offers a highly visual user experience. For example, overdue tasks that need attention are automatically highlighted in yellow while completed tasks receive a green checkmark. This color coordination makes for great ease of use within the task management.
MeisterTask's intuitive dashboard provides a customizable project list, alongside the user's own tasks and notifications on the right side of the screen. The dashboard is customizable in terms of colors and background images.
MeisterTask has easy to use iOS and Android applications which can be downloaded in their respective app stores. These apps provide a great mobile user experience where teams can manage tasks, create to-do lists, and checklists. The reminders feature also allows individuals to stay up to date with the rest of the team's tasks. Users are also able to make changes while being offline if they download the projects beforehand. Changes will automatically sync to their account once they are connected to the internet again.
The Help Center provides extensive tutorials accompanied with screenshots. Topics include: getting started with the software, features, accounts and billing, integrations, and FAQs. MeisterTask’s Youtube channel also shares short video tutorials and there is a blog that individuals can turn to for productivity tips, software news, and more. Every 2 weeks MeisterTask offers an introductory webinar to the software where users can learn about the software and ask questions.
For direct support, companies on the free plan can contact the support team via email. Those on the Business and Enterprise accounts receive prioritized email support. Customers can also call the support team (based in Vienna and Seattle) by phone during their regular business hours.
MeisterTask offers a good set of features for project management, but it is Kanban-based and lacks resource planning tools like project budgeting. Companies seeking a project management solution with these features may consider these alternatives:
MeisterTask is a solid, intuitive project management tool that is best suited for small and medium-sized companies. Their free plan allows users to try out the software with the option of upgrading to a paid plan when more advanced project management features are needed. Teams can easily keep track of project tasks, automate their workflows, and collaborate effectively. The dashboard also has an intuitive user experience and makes it easy to navigate the software quickly and gives a good overview of projects and tasks.
That said, some features such as budget management and capacity management are missing, which means that teams who especially need these functions may need to find an alternative. Communication features are also rather limited and do not include an instant messaging tool. Some of these features can be added through one of the many integrations available on the paid plans.