Asana and Trello are two tools that are useful for creating checklists, which can be shared with a large group of users, a few small groups, or just for one single user.
Asana was created in 2008 by former Facebook employees, Dustin Moskovitz and Justin Rosenstein. Released to the public in 2011, Asana strives to create a center for communication and reduce time spent face-to-face or spent inefficiently communicating. Asana also offers 3rd-party integration applications, such as Pinterest and Dropbox, allowing for great customization of the software’s purpose and how users can go about submitting their tasks assigned on checklists.
Asana is free for groups of up to 15 people; however, these free users do not receive priority customer support or certain features, such as the afore-mentioned application store. Items can be created in checklists, which can then have additional items within the checklist added, or these can be added to projects. After an item has been added to a checklist, these items can be delegated to a user; unfortunately, one major drawback is that only one task or item can be assigned to one user at once. Asana allows users to opt in or out of receiving emails on notifications to their email inbox. Asana also supports keyboard shortcuts, allowing for advanced users to easily navigate the page. Asana also supports a “follow” feature, which allows a user to follow the entire progress of a certain project.
A mobile application exists for both iOS and Android. An API has also been added recently, which allows for users to pull information from their Asana projects and implement them into web design or as a visual format.
Trello’s design is instantly reminiscent of a whiteboard with virtual 3×5 cards pinned onto them. Like Asana, Trello also includes support for third-party applications.
Trello is completely free alternative to Asana. A user can pin 3×5-formatted tasks to a board, which can then be assigned and delegated to different tasks. These boards can be created as public or open – if they are open, tools are available to allow anyone in the public to interact with the board and be assigned tasks. These cards can be color coded or sorted throughout the visual space. An API is available as well, allowing for information to be pulled from Trello and used in other formats. Trello also supports additions of APIs, allowing for the website’s features to be extended based on any necessities. Unlike Asana, multiple users can be assigned to one project, but numerous tasks cannot be duplicated across boards – these have to be manually inputted on each board.
Trello also has mobile applications available for iPhone and Android, both of which are completely native and built from the ground-up for use on a mobile platform; that means the HTML code isn’t just taken and put through a compiler to make an application.
Unfortunately, with the intuitive design of Trello, one might think that the visual 3×5 cards can be easily manipulated. This seems to be the most heavily criticised feature of Trello – cards cannot be copy and pasted, and can be somewhat bothersome to edit if they have been assigned to a user already. Trello does not offer a user to opt in or out of receiving email notifications whenever their project has been edited. Instead, users receive an email every day in the early morning (based on the designated timezone of the Trello project).
Trello or Asana – Which Should You Use?
Which checklist software a firm or user might use depends on two main things with Asana and Trello: does the user fancy a visual layout approach instead of a checklist approach(1), or does the user not want to pay at all? Trello might be the way to go for simple start-ups, and coordinators who aren’t sure what they want out of organization and project management software. Trello is free, so there is no risk for investing in it and trying to understand how to use it. However, Trello’s visual design approach may be its greatest downfall in its major lack of features. Asana also offers a free trial, yet only for a small group of users. Both softwares are worth checking out, due to their free trials.