Managing a project can feel like trying to assemble a 1000-piece puzzle, except those pieces are scattered across emails, shared drives, and team members’ minds. And, much like a puzzle, running a project is infinitely more difficult when you start from scratch, with neither an outline, project charter, nor a clear picture to guide your progress. Fortunately, there’s a better way: project management templates.
We’ve put together a list of seven project management templates designed to help you streamline your workflows, save time, and boost your team’s productivity. Let’s dive in!
Why should you use project management templates?
Before we get to the good stuff, it’s important to understand exactly why you should consider using project management templates when starting up your next project. By using a project management template, you’re able to leverage the learnings and expertise of other project management professionals who have done this before. This means taking advantage of the templates they’ve assembled in order to save time, reduce errors, and bolster your project management proficiency. That’s not all, though! In addition to the immediate benefits, using templates also helps you to standardize processes, ensure consistency, and replicate successful structures from one project to the next.
Now, let’s take a look at some free project management templates that will help you get your next project off the ground quickly and effectively.
The 7 best project management templates
This free project plan template for Word allows you to scope your work, divide it into manageable components, and schedule and assign tasks for your project. As changes occur, it can also help manage workloads and tasks. Once arranged on Word, you can use ProjectManager’s free project plan template to create a dynamic project plan viewable in five formats: Gantt chart, task list, Koanban board, calendar, and spreadsheet. This tool supports real-time team collaboration, facilitates progress tracking, and provides instant status reports. ProjectManager also offers a variety of other free project management templates.
Another great source for free project management templates is HubSpot. This template, downloadable as a Microsoft Word document, Google Doc, or PDF, assists in project planning. It includes sections to outline project overview, client’s needs, project objectives, and scope of activities. It also provides a section for approval and signatures, compatible with electronic signature tools like DocuSign.
If you’re a monday.com user, you can take advantage of a number of project management templates directly on the platform. This Single Project Template is your comprehensive tool for immediate project management, covering everything from planning and progress tracking to execution. It provides a unified platform to manage deadlines, stakeholders, budgets, and more, ensuring a tight grip on all elements so nothing falls by the wayside.
As you probably already know, Google Sheets can be a powerful tool for project management. The spreadsheet pros at Smartsheet have created several different project management templates that can be used in Google Sheets. This project management template standardizes the management process with sections for Project Details, Deliverables, and Cost/Hours. It facilitates task specification, tracks deliverables’ progress, and details costs and work hours. With features for managing statuses and priorities, it can simultaneously oversee multiple projects and tasks, serving as a fully customizable tool for smooth project execution.
ClickUp’s Project Management Template provides an organized, pre-built framework for streamlined project management. It offers multiple workflow views for efficient task assignment and tracking, along with six custom task statuses. Additional features include time tracking, priority setting, email synchronization, and more, all accessible through ClickApps. It serves as a comprehensive, all-in-one solution for effective project planning and execution.
This user-friendly template, one of our many project management templates for Excel allows managers to categorize and assign projects to employees. With an in-built calculator to flag over/under based on user input and conditional formatting. It’s a fully customizable Excel template aimed at streamlining project planning. Additionally, it offers creative customization options with a vast selection of images, graphics, and fonts, and includes features for animations, transitions, or videos. It also allows quick sharing and publishing anywhere.
Asana users can find a wealth of project management templates on the company’s website. Their cross-functional project plan template brings together project plans, goals, and communications, along with status updates and portfolios for tracking progress. It supports multi-homing of tasks and offers an overarching project overview. This template simplifies project management, making tasks visualization, prioritization, and communication more efficient.
Final thoughts on project management templates
Project management templates can be game-changers, offering project managers a means to streamline processes, enhance efficiency, and bolster collaboration. These adaptable tools provide a solid framework, eliminating the need to start from scratch every time and allowing teams to visualize timelines, prioritize tasks, and unify team efforts.
As we’ve seen, free project management templates are accessible and easy to find, and each brings its own unique benefits, catering to various needs and team sizes. As a project manager, the adoption of these templates is a smart move, priming your projects for better performance, happier stakeholders, and a more productive team.