Paymo Logo
Blog Home
header post

Jump to section

What Are the Tools for Project Management?
Work Management
Last modified date

Apr 28, 2023

7 Challenges Project Managers Face when Adopting PM Tools

author image

Alex Tray

Blog average read time

9 min

Last modified date

April 28, 2023

Even the simplest project, be it IT development, construction, or engineering, can be challenging to start and complete. Going through all project stages efficiently without proper management is even more demanding. As tedious as it may seem, having the right tools can simplify the required tasks and streamline your workflow.

In this post, we explain what the tools for project management are, why PMs should use them, and which tools for project management can help complete projects efficiently.

This article tackles 7 challenges, problems, and issues that project managers may face when using project management tools. By understanding these challenges and developing strategies to address them, project managers can maximize the benefits of these tools and enhance their team’s effectiveness.

But first,

What Are the Tools for Project Management?

A project management tool is an app or online service designed to help with the following:

  • Project planning and implementation
  • Resource allocation and distribution
  • Setting up and optimizing schedules

With such solutions, single-project managers or entire teams can monitor budgets, better manage quality, and exchange documents and other important data between departments or colleagues.

A product management solution is usually a unified collaboration platform that simplifies communication, task synchronization, and reporting between project teams.

The variety of metrics and activities that a project manager needs to track while completing a project goes from, for example, server hardware updates to the budget distribution. Therefore, when you compare different project management tools, consider the availability of the required monitoring and management functions in your tool of choice.

Considering the following functionality list can help you choose the most suitable project management tools available to use:

  • Task listing/to-do lists: The opportunity to set up and assign tasks and update every task status is critical to keep the team synced while proceeding with the project.
  • Communication: Project management tools that enable convenient, fast, and smooth communication between team members helps to keep track of tasks and ideas, as well as to solve problems appearing while working on the project.
  • Scheduling: A built-in customizable calendar, milestone table, or Gantt chart can help you monitor the current progress per task and the entire project and distribute the remaining time more efficiently.
  • Data sharing: Organizing quick access and sharing space for project documentation and other critical data can save much time and effort for your team.
  • Reporting: Regular updates on the progress of every department are critical for PMs to keep track of the available and working resources. Additionally, a project manager who wants to ensure the progress tempo is satisfying will benefit from the all-in-one reports functionality in the project management tool.

It goes without saying that a PM’s work can become more efficient with the right tool. When you have all the necessary functions, features, and metrics in one solution, along with reminders and automated reports, time saved, on data collection and paperwork can be invested in analytics and optimization for future projects.

But the project manager has to address and tackle challenges and issues when adopting project management tools.

We’ve outlined 7 challenges along with 7 tools one can resort to:

1. Overcoming Resistance to Change

One of the biggest challenges when introducing project management tools is getting team members to adopt and use them. Many people resist change, and some may feel threatened by the introduction of new tools. How can project managers overcome resistance and encourage buy-in from their team?

Case study: Paymo

Paymo is a project management software that helps freelancers and managers handle their projects through all the project stages, from planning and estimating a project all the way to closing, such as sending invoices to their clients and receiving payments through online payment gateways.

This challenge of resistance to change is linked to psychology and behavior, so tackling it is even more difficult since it doesn’t involve concrete matters. Having said that, by explaining the benefits of project management tools, time tracking, and task management, as a manager, you can actuate a behavioral change in your team—even if small at first.

That’s why Paymo is great for employees who need a structured and neat interface but who don’t need a dedicated agile tool—although there are workarounds sprints, e.g., using Kanban boards and Gantt charts.

By starting small with tracking the time spent on their tasks and visualizing their tasks with Kanban or Gantt charts, your team will gradually see the benefits of using a project management tool. Then, in time, Paymo can become the single source of truth for all your team’s projects since Paymo is a feature-rich project management software—explore all its PM features.

Like all other task management tools, Paymo is strong in its collaboration features, file proofing and versioning, threaded comments, and so on, yet allows employees to work at their own pace and communicate asynchronously, which will alleviate some of that resistance to use a collaborative tool.

Price-wise, Paymo is free for a single user (paid plan at $4.95 for extra features); the Small Office plan ($9.95/user/month is your go-to for small teams.

2. Integration with Existing Systems

Many organizations have existing software and systems that they use for project management. Project managers must find tools to integrate with these systems to avoid duplication of effort and data entry errors. What are the challenges of integrating project management tools with existing systems, and how can these challenges be overcome?

Case study: MeisterTask

Among the tools for agile management, MeisterTask stands out with the Kanban board approach implementation. An extensive set of teamwork optimization features helps the app to enable smooth management and resource distribution.

With MeisterTask, you can cooperate with team members by scheduling tasks, setting tags, watching the progress, and mentioning each other to keep in contact whenever necessary. Moreover, a team member can have a task board with tasks attached to it in this solution. Tasks can then be organized and scheduled according to the changes in the project’s flow or personal timelines.

MeisterTask has built-in automation capabilities, native software integrations with GitHub, Slack, Microsoft Suite, and Google Calendar, and third-party integrations with Zapier.

The core features are free of charge, enabling you to perform entry-level management of personal or small team projects. A Pro package for $12.49 per user/month (billed annually) suits individuals or small to medium teams with limited budgets.

For a Business package, $22.49 per user/month opens the whole set of functions along with several security enhancements and prioritizes customer support. The Enterprise package adds a personal account manager, security checks, and advanced support for an individual price.

3. Complexity and Learning Curve:

Some project management tools can be complex and difficult to learn. This can be a significant barrier to adoption, especially for team members who are not technically savvy. How can project managers address the complexity and learning curve of project management tools?

Case study: Trello

Trello is another well-known and popular solution for entry-level or first-time project management adopters. With many cooperation features, coworkers can interact with each other within one task card, board, or list, comment on issues and share data inside the platform.

Trello’s learning curve is shallow: Trellos is easy to learn and use, and users can quickly become proficient with it, except maybe its automation features.

But as a simple Kanban tool, Trello is great for syncing teams with lists, boards, and task cards that help every team member remain updated and proceed at a regular tempo.

Trello has a free basic plan. Paid plans open access to integrations with other services, priority customer support, and automation features, among other benefits. To sum up, Trello is a simple and effective solution most suitable for development teams.

4. Customization and Flexibility:

Project management tools may not always fit the specific needs of a project or team. Project managers need customizable and flexible tools to adapt to their unique requirements. What are the challenges of customization and flexibility in project management tools, and how can project managers address them?

Case study: ClickUp

ClickUp is a project management tool that wants to be more than a tool. This solution combines different features to become a unified platform for PMs.

ClickUp unites project management functions, to-do lists for team members, shared spreadsheets, document storage, and display recording software, among other features, in one tool. As a project management tool, the solution enables you to create detailed project visuals with calendars, lists, Gantt charts, and boards.

Additionally, as a PM, you can see each team member’s progress on their task in a box view. When your team consists of 20 and more people, this visualization tool is a huge plus to help you manage their resources and plan future loads per employee.

Another great feature of this solution is the goals functionality. Use goals, the top priorities for a team or organization, as guidelines for the projects and tasks you manage. The goals you set can be divided into targets, which are measurable results.

Finally, defined targets can be linked to every task. As a team member completes the task, their contribution is displayed on a progress bar for a target.

ClickUp is free, with limited functions. The yearly payment for the Unlimited plan starts at $5 per team member/month. Business and Business Plus plans cost $12 and $19. The Enterprise plan is available on demand with all the features and functions for multiple large teams.

5. Compatibility and Interoperability

Different project management tools may use different file formats, communication protocols, and data structures. This can make it challenging to share data and collaborate across tools. One solution to address these challenges is to use reverse ETL, a process of moving data from a data warehouse or a data lake to operational systems such as project management tools. What are the challenges of compatibility and interoperability, and how can project managers address them?

Case study: Jira

Probably the most famous agile management tool, Jira was designed to streamline the development of software products and services. The point of agile development is constant incremental software improvements instead of running a big release once.

As the solution created for development organizations, Jira has many specific functions. An issue is a core element of Jira, representing the kind of task that the team is currently completing: a bug fix, a project task, and so on.

This project management tool can compose issues into a single list of project tasks and a common backlog to monitor.

In Jira, you also get a visual representation of completed, current and planned tasks displayed as boards. You can choose between Kanban and Scrum boards. A Kanban board that shows tasks in columns by current progress suits teams that prefer to work in stable workflows and regular tempo.

The scrum board showing the backlog, active sprints, and project reports is a specific tool for teams working with the scrum methodology. Jira can be the most suitable project management tool if your team works in agile workflows.

The solution is free (with limited features, though) for small teams with ten members or fewer. The Standard subscription for 11+ users costs $7.75 per user/month, adding such features as audit logs, data residency, and 250 GB of cloud storage for project data.

The Premium plan adds advanced roadmaps, project archives, 24/7 support, and other features for $15.25 per user/month. Enterprise plans for teams with 800+ members are billed annually, costing $134,500 or more.

6. Cost

Many project management tools are expensive, especially those that are designed for large organizations or enterprise-level projects. This can be a challenge for smaller teams or organizations with limited budgets. What are some cost-effective project management tools, and how can project managers balance costs with benefits?

Case study: nTask

nTask is a project management tool with integrated meeting management and time-tracking functions.

With nTask, you can divide the total work the team has to complete into separate workspaces with particular tasks each. For tasks, the solution enables setting productivity functions such as scheduled deadlines, actual start and completion dates, to-do lists per task, and a comment section.

Going beyond the standard features of project management tools, nTask has an integrated time-tracking functionality tied to every task. A team member chooses a task they’re working on and starts tracking the working time with one click. A PM can then find task time-tracking data in the Timesheet panel.

The meeting organizer in nTask is also advanced: you can set the date, time, and planned video meeting duration. What’s unique about this feature is that you can assign a meeting to a particular task on the board.

The last but not least important thing to mention about nTask is that the features of this project management tool are available in a convenient UI. Mastering the solution won’t take long; you can start optimizing a project soon after logging in.

nTask offers basic functionality for free (if your team has five members or fewer). The nTask Premium will cost you at least $2.99 per user monthly (billed annually) for custom filters, increased cloud storage space, and Gantt charts.

7. Data Security and Privacy

Project management tools often store sensitive data, such as project plans, budgets, and stakeholder information. This data must be kept secure and private, especially in regulated industries such as healthcare or finance. What are data security and privacy challenges in project management tools, and how can project managers ensure compliance with regulations and best practices?

Case study: Nakivo Backup & Replication

NAKIVO’s all-in-one solution enables you to set automated workflows for incremental app-aware backup, recovery, and replication for different disaster scenarios.

Apart from project management tools that enable and streamline team collaboration, project development heavily depends on data that teams generate, process, and store. Another critical project element is the IT infrastructure the team builds and uses to work conveniently, efficiently, and quickly.

Losing that data and infrastructure due to a global malfunction or disaster like a ransomware attack can threaten not only the project result but the very existence of an organization. Disaster Recovery from NAKIVO is a tool that project managers should have at their disposal.

Once configured, a workflow can be initiated with one click, enabling you to launch failovers and failbacks within moments to minimize infrastructure downtime even after global disasters. The solution can work with virtual, physical, cloud, hybrid environments, and SaaS.

Integrating NAKIVO’s disaster recovery solution lets you save your project data and critical infrastructure when all else fails. Moreover, you can save time, effort, and funds invested in a project as you always have valid backups to restore the most valuable asset—data.


Project management tools like Paymo, MeisterTask, ClickUp, Jira, Trello, and nTask can help you organize work for your team to keep every member productive and finish tasks on time. Various features in various tools make them suitable for different projects, and all these help solve challenges project managers face.

Also, you might want to take care of the project’s data protection. With the disaster recovery solution from NAKIVO, you can configure regular data backup and smooth recovery of entire IT infrastructures regardless of their type and size.

Every tool presented in this post has a free version: use that opportunity to test them all and choose the tool that suits the needs of your team and current project the most.

First published on April 6, 2023.

Alex Tray


Alex Tray is a system administrator with ten years of experience in the IT field. With a BA in computer science, Alex worked at a number of companies in Silicon Valley and helped start up a number of new businesses. He is a freelance writer and a cybersecurity consultant, who writes articles on data management and data protection. His main area of expertise is Windows Server and Desktop Administration.

Read More

April 29, 2024

Read time clock

10 min

20 Best Project Management Software & Tools for 2024

Author: Andrei Țiț

Andrei Țiț

March 21, 2023

Read time clock

5 min

From Business Analyst to Project Manager

Author: Alexandra Martin

Alexandra Martin

April 1, 2024

Read time clock

6 min

5 Essential Skills of a Digital Project Manager

Author: David Pagotto

David Pagotto

HomeComplete Feature ListPricingFree AccountAbout Us


Contact SalesOnboarding


CustomersTestimonialsSpread the WordAffiliates

Paymo Logo

Copyright © 2024 Paymo LLC

By signing up, you're agreeing with the Paymo Terms of Service and Privacy Policy

Cookies help us deliver our services. By continuing to use the website, you consent to the use of cookies.

Learn more about the cookies in Our Privacy Policy.