Project Management Software vs. Task Management Software

by Gabriella Martin

In this short post, I would like to explain the main differences between software for project management, task management, and ticketing. Software vendors often use these terms imprecisely. It’s important that we take a quick look at these topics in order to distinguish them.

Project Management Software

Project management software distinguishes itself from task management software and ticketing software in the following ways:

  • You can structure tasks hierarchically and not just as simple subtasks. A project’s overview is always visible.
  • You can structure projects hierarchically to any depth.
  • You can display tasks can depend on each other (e.g. with a Gantt chart).
  • Base plans and current plans are distinguishable.
  • Resource planning is implementable.

Project management software is usually more complex than issue tracking software. Thus, it requires more time to learn. A good project management software should include and expand upon what a task management software can do.

Task Management Software

Task management software and project management software can undertake many of the same things. As I just explained, however, project management software is more comprehensive.

You may also be familiar with issue tracking systems. Software developers typically use this term. Task management software and issue tracking systems don’t differ much from one another.

Most modern issue tracking systems support the Scrum methodology of project management. Issue tracking does not require project and task hierarchies. It eliminates planning due to a clocked approach and short release cycles.

Task management software differs from project management software in that:

  • Task management is better suited for software development processes.
  • It is easier to use.
  • There is little support for project planning.
  • It is not meant for large or hybrid (agile/classic) projects.
  • There is no way to take dependencies into account.

Ticketing Software

We often use ticketing software in support. Its purpose is processing queues into which customers have placed tickets. The following performance features are helpful here:

  • Differentiation between agents and clients
  • Automatic assignment of tickets to queues
  • Support of workflows with escalations and SLAs
  • Reports on process metrics, such as average response time
  • Generation of tickets via email, web application, and phone

Ticketing software helps you tackle customer service related issues with ease.

The Bottom Line

A project management software offers far more possibilities for classical project management than task management software. Task management/issue tracking systems are especially popular in software development, but they are not really intended for large projects. Simple ticketing systems are not suitable for project management purposes, but ticketing systems with the features listed above are helpful.

Other Topics in Task Management

Other recommended topics in the area of task management are, for example, our blog article on 4 task management methods you need to know.

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