Trello vs Asana

Today, businesses are transitioning from emails to team-messaging and collaboration apps to make communications simpler and increase productivity. Using one centralized location that is shared by all team members, you can encourage instant collaboration and complete projects on time. However, the tricky part is actually in deciding which project management solution is the best for your team. Different teams and businesses may have different focuses and preferences. In this article, we will discuss the comparisons between Trello vs Asana, two of the most popular project management and collaboration tools on the market right now.

Trello: Design and Interface
Trello was first created in 2011 by Fog Creek Software, but then split off in 2014 to become an independent company. Trello is a task management solution that is based on the Kanban system, which was developed by Toyota to organize projects and keep production levels high. Trello is a highly visual tool, mostly known for the sticky note-style interface.

At first, each user is provided with a blank canvas that looks like a large bulletin board. Here, team members can pin different tasks related to the projects. The design is incredibly neat and clean. It uses different colors and shapes to separate different sections, thereby reducing ambiguity. You can have a list of different “Boards”which represent different teams that you belong to. You can get a new blank canvas by clicking on a board. Different projects or stages are organized as“Lists”, and specific tasks are represented by “Cards” that can be grouped and organized to specific lists.

There is a small menu at the top of the screen. In this menu, you can find the back button to return to the home page, the boards button to trigger a drop-down menu which gives access to recent and personalized boards, a search bar, and some account settings and controls. Meanwhile, on the right side of the screen, there is a separate menu that comes up once you dive into a particular project. It has options for showing the activity feed, card filters, and customization.

Take a look : Basecamp vs Trello.

Asana: Design and Interface
One of the considerations when choosing between Trello vs Asana is indeed the interface. Asana is unique because, unlike Trello which sticks to one visual approach, it has the ability to switch between the traditional list-based view and the visual card-based view. Such design is great in a way that it allows great customization. But it can also become a disadvantage because it may appear cluttered and complicated to an unexpecting user.

Nevertheless, the design has clear and intuitive menu sections that are designated by solid color panels. The side menu houses several options. You can get quick access to your “Favorite” projects and tasks, Teams, Projects, Conversations, Reports, and Calendar. The top menu has more navigation buttons for the window, including “Board”, “Progress”, and “Files”. Unfortunately, there is some redundancy here, as the top menu also contains the same options as the side menu. This is the reason why Asana’s interface may feel cluttered.

Features and Integrations
At the cores, Trello vs Asana have very similar features, as they indeed have the same goals. However, Trello has visually-focused features, whereas Asana spreads its features for both text-based and visual-based approaches. Depending on how you prefer to represent your data and information, you may lean more to one than the other.

Trello only has the board view with color-coded tasks for easy understanding and organization. You can use templates to save time. However, you move the cards manually specific lists to indicate the stage and status. You can set permissions for private projects, teams, and guest access. You can also set due dates and due times for all tasks and projects. There are email and push notifications available. You can attach files up to 250 MB, but only in the Business subscription tier.

On the other hand, Asana has both board and list-based views. The progress reporting functions are very nice, as they enable you to retrieve information more efficiently. This tool is powerful, as it allows you to link tasks to indicate dependencies and it also allows you to expand tasks into more detailed subtasks. Users can comment on specific tasks, and the ability to attach files up to 100 MB is available for all subscription tiers.

Both tools here have lots of integrations – Trello calls them as “Power Ups”. There are integrations to major services such as Dropbox, Google Drive, Salesforce, and even Slack on both tools. Even though Trello currently has a wider collection of integrations, it limits the number of integrations that you can install on each board based on your subscription tier. On the good side, Trello provides its API to all users so that you can create your own integration as needed. Asana is better that there is no integration limitation, but the API is only available for paid users.

In terms of support, Asana is better. All paid accounts are provided with the Customer Success Program, which includes not only technical support but also training for onboarding, deployment, and process design. On Trello, such service is only available in the highest subscription tier.

Finally, let’s see the pricing of Trello vs Asana. Interestingly, each of them comes with three subscription tiers that are similar.

Trello’s free tier is better because it already allows unlimited cars, boards, and members. However, you can only use one “Power Up” integration per board and attach files up to 10 MB. The Business Class ($9.99 per user per month) allows an unlimited number of integrations and file attachments up to 250 MB. The Enterprise tier ($20.83 per user per month) brings advanced security and management features.

Asana’s free tier allows unlimited tasks and conversations but is limited to 15 team members. The Premium tier, which also costs $9.99 per user per month, removes the limit and enables unlimited dashboards and control features. The Enterprise tier is available on request with a variable price, providing advanced integration options along with monitoring and provisioning functions.

- Highly visual approach with Cards, Lists, and Boards- Has both text-based and visual views that are customizable
- Generally neater and more efficient interface- The interface may feel cluttered due to redundant menu options
- 250 MB file upload limit at the Business Class tier- 100 MB file upload limit on all tiers
- Integration limit based on subscription tier, API available for all- No integration limit, API available for paid users
- The higher tier has advanced security features- The highest tier has advanced monitoring and provisioning features

If simplicity is your top priority, Trello is the way to go. The visual-driven approach is very neat and intuitive. It is simple and easy to use. The integration limit is not a problem if you don’t need too many integrations in the first place. In addition, the upload limit is also higher with the Business Class. On the other hand, if you need more customizability and integrations, Asana is the way to go. You can also choose Asana if you need clear information on task dependencies.

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