There are so many project management apps available online. Actually, it’s one vertical where web apps rule, and native apps have been relegated to an afterthought. The competition is intense and customers have so many choices in front them. Yet, trust me when I say this, there is still room in the market for new players who focus on clean layouts and simpler workflows.
In my experience, we are stuck between horrible bloat and ridiculously featureless project management and team collaboration apps. So, I’m always in search of the one app that has the right set of features. With a catchy name, Siasto pitches that it’s the perfect way to collaborate with your teammates. Let’s go check it out, shall we?
Siasto has a generous free tier that allows 3 users to collaborate on up to 10 projects. Beyond that limit, it will cost you $8 per person per month to collaborate on unlimited projects. The pricing is affordable and the absence of multiple tiers takes confusion out of the equation as well.
By now we all know what to expect from a modern day project management app. Instead of running down each and every standard feature set, let me try to highlight only the best bits. That is, let’s look at what Siasto does differently with the expected features, how simple the workflow is, and then see the stuff that’s so unique to the app.
After signing up, the app created a sample project in the name of Justin’s Knitting Group. Not what I was expecting, but hilarious nonetheless. The app prompts you to change the name as your first assignment. There isn’t a way to skip this step even if you own a knitting group or like the name! In the same manner, the app forces you to create a new project in the next step. This hinting and nudging is accompanied across the board.
This kind of forced self learning is good to learn about the app in detail, but I’m not sure how many people will end up liking this. It’s way too much spoon feeding in my opinion. Siasto already opens up with an option to view a tutorial at launch, and for many, that may be more than enough.
The funny thing is, Siasto is very easy to use. It’s so intuitive and simple to use to an extent that all these tool tips, flash notices and forced learning appear redundant. As for the workflow, it’s typical that you start with a project and break it down to multiple tasks. Tagging, adding deadlines, uploading files, inviting staff etc., happens in a single screen and that’s a great time saver.
The user interface is clean and well designed. Unlike other competing apps, Siasto makes bringing more hands on deck an easy task by placing a prominently placed button. The filters and menus are conveniently located adding to the ease of use.
Profile pics make the job of looking up which tasks are assigned to whom lot more easier. Dedicated sections for documents and discussions are other thoughtful additions. So, the next time when you are looking for file or a conversation, you can save yourself the hassle of sifting through a bunch of discussion threads.
One of the things that liked a lot in Siasto is the calendar. As soon as tasks are created, they are automatically added to the respective date in the calendar. Having the tasks planned for days and weeks ahead is great, but, it’s far better when you can see them all at a glance and be clear about your schedule.
A two way integration with Google Calendar is a delight. The event and task filters are a nifty little addition that enhances user experience.
Siasto’s powerful integrations are a delight. In addition to the good old file upload option from the local drives, you can quickly import files from popular cloud storage destinations like Dropbox, Google Drive and Box. These integrations are executed in a frictionless manner and access to them isn’t buried in a settings page.
All the file import choices are available right from the upload screen and sharing becomes a breeze as soon as you connect to your cloud drive accounts. This is an insanely useful feature!
I feel Siasto is far better than the likes of Asana. There is a smooth flow and a simpler user interface. The one thing that’s lacking in Siasto is the graphical representation of work progress. In fact, absence of reports and progress charts is a major let down in many modern day project management and team collab apps.
It makes sense to see how far along the projects have come and how much work the has team done, right? Instead of jumping between tabs and pages, a quick look at the dashboard should be enough for a manager to stay on top of his team. Hope it’s in their road map.
So, for those of you looking for a simple and affordable team collaboration app, Siasto deserves to be in your shortlist.