Trello and Accelo are two of the most popular project management tools available today.
But how do they stack up against each other?
Which one manages tasks better?
Which one helps you allocate resources more effectively?
Which one is more affordable?
Discover all the answers in our detailed comparison guide.
A. Project and Task Management
Get. Things. Done.
You and every project manager likely live by those words.
It’s also the heart and soul of any project management software.
This is why, before anything else, you must evaluate a tool’s ability to help you manage your tasks and projects.
Features to look out for:
- Project structure: A simple, intuitive way to organize work and toggle through multiple projects, tasks, boards, etc.
- Views: Board, list, timeline, Gantt, and other types of views that let you visualize various types of information within each project.
- Tasks & subtasks: Dedicated spaces offering the ability to drill down to the smallest level of actionable detail about each project item.
- Statuses: Effortless ways to communicate the exact progress of each task, board, project, etc.
- Checklists: Quick to-do lists for each task so things don’t fall through the cracks
- Task templates: Easy-to-copy templates to create identical tasks at scale across multiple projects.
- Assignees: The ability to assign tasks, boards, or projects to individual team members, groups, or even teams.
- Priorities: A way to communicate the urgency level of each task, subtask, or project.
- Automations: Trigger-based (if X happens then do Y); ways to automate repetitive actions such as notifications, comments, status updates, etc.
1. Project Structure / Hierarchy
Track your workload in Trello by organizing it into:
Workspaces > Boards > Lists > Cards
- Workspaces: A container for all the Boards in your team. You can create multiple Workspaces to classify your work further.
- Boards: A simple Kanban board interface to view task progress within a Workplace.
- List: A series of tasks (Cards) at the same progress stage. For example, To-do List, Doing list, Done List, etc.
- Cards: The smallest component of the board with all the actionable aspects of the project.
Accelo helps you organize your projects with a straightforward structure:
Company > Project > Milestone > Task > Checklists
- Company: A company or client page set up on your Accelo account.
- Projects: Long-term work that needs to be completed by or for a Company.
- Milestones: Different stages or phases of a Project, which can have separate budgets.
- Tasks: Actionable work items required to achieve Milestones.
- Checklists: Granular action items required to complete a Task.
Trello provides seven project views, namely:
- Boards: View your tasks on a Kanban board. It’s the simplest way to go from idea to action, plan projects, and track tasks.
- Timeline: Stay on top of project timelines, sprints, and goals. It’s great for adjusting dates on the fly and spotting potential gaps.
- Calendar: Perfect for managing schedules or to-dos; plus, you can sync it with third-party calendars.
- Dashboard: Offers a bird’s-eye view of projects and processes, helping you manage workloads and spot bottlenecks before they start.
- Map: Ideal for location-based data. Great for tracking properties, planning events, or organizing fieldwork.
- Workspace: Manage work across multiple Boards. Create custom overviews for detailed tracking of both minor tasks and large projects.
- Table: See your work like a spreadsheet. Sort and filter to focus on what matters.
Accelo allows you to see your Tasks with these views:
- Project View: This screen displays all Milestones and Tasks within a Project with details of Assignees, Planned Due, Status, etc.
- Milestone View: Displays an overview of all Tasks within a Milestone. The Tasks can be arranged based on Status, Earned Value, Budget, or Start and Due Dates. You can also shift Tasks within your workflow by dragging and dropping them on a Kanban-style board.
- Project Schedule: Access a Gantt-style overview of your Projects’ Milestones and Tasks for Project planning.
- My Schedule: See all your assigned Tasks based on a calendar view.
- Deadlines Task Board: Displays the Tasks you need to do based on deadlines. You can drag and drop Tasks to change deadlines.
- Status Task Board: Allows a user to see all Tasks they have created or that have been assigned to them. It lets you drag and drop Tasks to change their Status.
- Assignment Task Board: Shows a manager all the Tasks they have created or are managing. It simplifies the process of assigning Tasks.
3. Tasks & Subtasks
Manage tasks, goals, or anything that needs to get done via cards on Board.
Your cards can hold a variety of useful information, like:
- Members who are responsible for the task
- Due dates
- Custom Fields
You can also track and monitor task progress via a Checklist of smaller to-dos within the task.
Accelo lets you create Tasks under Milestones or Projects to keep track of important actionable items.
Although you cannot add any subtasks, you can add these details to provide context to your Tasks:
- Task Title
- Task Status
- Task Description
Move cards to specific lists that indicate the workflow stage they’re in. Customize these lists to suit your workflow.
Accelo lets you assign and change your Task Status to indicate its progress in your workflow. The default Statuses include Unassigned, Pending, Accepted, Started, and Completed.
You can also create new or custom Statuses.
Add multiple checklists to a single card. @mention team members in checklist items to notify them.
You can also track checklist completion with the help of a progress bar at the top that shows the completion percentage.
Finally, turn checklist items into cards to move them to the main board.
Accelo lets you add Checklists for to-do items within a Task. Assignees can tick Checklist items to indicate their completion.
6. Task Templates
Trello allows you to create a default Card Template. You can do this from a blank or new card, where you can:
- Format the description
- Add custom fields
- Copy over checklists, and more.
Accelo’s standard Task Template helps you assign work and provide context to aid your Project workflow.
This template can be configured to include additional details. However, by default, it contains:
- Task Title
- Task Description
- Task Status
- Task Time
- Task Rate
- Start and Due Dates
Assign a Card by going to the Members icon and selecting a member or multiple people from the dropdown.
Accelo lets you assign Projects, Milestones, and Tasks to people on your team. Projects and Milestones can be assigned to managers, while Tasks can be assigned to both managers and team members.
Use the custom fields functionality to add a Priority field to each Card.
You can set Task Priorities to Critical, High, Normal, Low, or None on Accelo. Each level has a corresponding icon based on its urgency.
You can edit the Priority names but can’t create custom ones or modify the icons.
Trello’s automation features include:
- Card and board buttons: Adds buttons to automate the next step in a workflow
- Rules: Set triggers to automate actions
- Scheduled automations: Set up recurring actions
- Due date automations: Trigger actions when a task reaches its due date
Accelo allows you to automate certain business and Project processes to save time for more important work. You can set up automations based on Triggers, Rules, and Actions.
B. Time Management
Time is money for a reason.
The right software can be the difference between pinching pennies and raking in the big bucks.
Effective project management software offers effortless time management features to help you befriend the clock.
With the right one, expect to keep all your tasks running as scheduled and meet your deadlines with ease.
Features to look out for include:
- Due dates: Communicate expected delivery dates.
- Time estimates: Make capacity decisions based on how much time each task or project is expected to take.
- Time tracking: Measure productivity with accurate time consumption data for each team member.
1. Due Dates
Trello lets you add and edit start dates, due dates, and due date reminders in a card.
Maintain deadlines for Project deliverables by adding Start and Due Dates on Accelo.
You can add or modify these dates while creating or editing Tasks. They can also be modified from your Project Schedule.
2. Time Estimates
Trello doesn’t have a dedicated time estimates feature. However, you can create a custom field to note a time estimate for working on a card.
Accelo lets you add a Time Budget to Tasks. Once an Assignee has finished a Task, you can compare the estimated time vs the actual time taken.
3. Time Tracking
Trello doesn’t offer any native time-tracking features.
You can use Accelo’s in-built Timer to track how long you work on a Task. The timer starts automatically by default when you start an Activity. However, you can pause, resume, and stop the Timer at any time or manually log time using the Time Log button.
And if you’re working on different Tasks, the app will automatically start tracking time for both and switch between Timers as you move between Tasks.
What you can’t measure, you can’t improve.
Reporting and analytics features can help you track real-time progress, monitor key metrics, and sniff out bottlenecks like a detective.
Armed with these insights, your team can stay ahead of the curve no matter the situation.
Expect better resource management, superior deadline compliance, and a more focused and decisive team.
Features to look out for include:
- Goals and milestones: Record targets for the whole team to see and work towards.
- Dashboards: Visualize data from all corners of the team into a user-friendly, interactive interface.
- Gantt charts: Keep your plans flexible with Gantt charts that allow you to adjust timelines based on changing resource availability and task completion ratio.
1. Goals & Milestones
Browse the Trello template library for templates to help you set and track goals. For example, you can clearly define project goals and track milestones with the OKR (objectives and key results) template.
Accelo’s Milestones are overarching agendas within a Project. For example, a testing stage for a product release. The stage can be classified as a Milestone and has several Tasks under it that need to be completed.
However, the tool doesn’t have a distinct feature for setting goals.
Trello keeps it simple and user-friendly, so its reporting mainly consists of the Dashboard View — a bird’s-eye perspective on your projects and how much work needs to be done.
You can add bar or pie charts in tiles that tabulate the number of cards (tasks) per list, due date, member, and label.
Here’s a list of some of the many Dashboards that Accelo offers:
- Schedule Dashboard
- Utilization Dashboard
- Profitability Dashboard
- User Dashboard
- Manager Dashboard
- Company Dashboard
- Sale Dashboard
- Project Dashboard
- Ticket Dashboard
These Dashboards provide you with a quick, accurate overview of different aspects around Project and Task management. It lets you oversee progress, planning, and profitability.
3. Gantt Charts
Trello doesn’t have any native Gantt chart capabilities. However, it does offer a timeline view that provides a visual representation of project interconnections and deadlines.
It allows you to:
- Adjust start and end dates for issues
- View by day, week, month, or quarter
- Group by member, list, and label
- View unscheduled cards
Accelo’s Gantt charts allow you to:
- View Milestones and Tasks based on their durations and dependencies.
- Click and drag to link Milestones or Tasks and create dependencies.
- Collapse or expand Milestones to hide/view Tasks.
- Drag Milestone bars to extend or reduce durations for project planning.
D. User Management
Software, features, and other tech things aside, the real heroes of any project are your team members. So make sure to pick the kind of project management software that puts them front and center!
How do you do this?
Look for software that knows what different team members need and helps you deliver the right experience.
Features to look out for include:
- User groups: Create internal teams representing various departments, functions, or projects.
- Permission levels: Grant different access levels depending on the users’ information requirements and the company’s security concerns.
- Guest users: Invite team members from other companies/teams to collaborate with your team without compromising on confidential data.
1. User Groups
Trello doesn’t let you create custom user groups with different permission levels.
You can create custom User Groups in Accelo with specific permission levels for the whole group.
This lets you categorize your team and bulk assign access levels, helping you to easily sort users and control their access to different Accelo modules.
2. Permission Levels
Set different permission levels for all team members. Choose who can comment, react, invite, or remove members on your Trello boards.
Accelo offers comprehensive permission levels, including view, edit, assign, delete, plan, admin, and more, across three different access levels for users:
- Administrators have full access
- Professionals are standard users who can log time and manage work
- Contractors are limited roles that can only log time
You can also choose to give members access based on their roles within specific teams on Accelo (for example, Company, Sale, Projects, etc.).
3. Guest Users
Invite guest users to one or multiple Boards to view and edit Cards.
Accelo doesn’t have a distinct feature to add guest users. However, you can add users with temporary access by assigning Contractor roles.
You can also add client users via the Client Portal.
In project management, collaboration and communication are like a ballroom dance — if everyone isn’t in sync, you’re just stepping on each other’s toes!
A project manager should encourage their team to be on the same page regarding everything happening on the project. This could involve regular meetings, periodic status updates, shared checklists, etc.
But things can get tricky when you add different team structures (remote, hybrid, distributed, etc.).
The trick is to balance ‘informing everyone’ with ‘over-communicating.’
The solution is to forge a shared space where the whole team can contribute without hampering individual productivity. Picking a suitable project management software is the first step toward achieving this goal.
Features to look for include:
- Comments: Simple ways to send feedback or discuss a task or project.
- Threads: Keep all relevant comments in a single thread.
- Tagging/@mention: Mention a team member on a task, in comments, or in any shared space to notify them.
- Sharing tasks: Share tasks with relevant team members for efficient collaboration.
- File management: Attach and store files, create and annotate documents, etc., for ready access to project documentation.
- Notifications: Customize how team members receive notifications.
1. Comments, Threads, & Tagging
Click any card to open the comments section and leave a comment. Add attachments in them and @mention team members to collaborate on tasks.
Edit your comments to keep them up to date with the latest information. Or delete them to avoid miscommunication.
Right-click the timestamp to get a share link. Share these comments with others to invite more people to view and comment on the cards.
Accelo doesn’t let you comment directly on Tasks. However, you can add replies to Activities in Message Streams.
An Activity is any work correspondence done for a Task, like sending an email, scheduling a meeting, or creating an Internal Note for your team. These Activities are logged in a Message Stream within a Project or Milestone.
Team members and clients can add in-line replies or comments in response to an Activity in the Message Stream.
2. File Management
Attach files to cards to offer more insight into the task.
Trello automatically makes it the Card cover if it’s an image file.
Attach files like PDFs and images to Tasks or email exchanges with your team or clients.
You can also search for attachments or files from your Accelo Dashboard and upload files from integrated services like Dropbox or Google Drive.
Send and receive notifications for various actions such as adding cards, being mentioned on them, changing due dates, moving cards, and more.
Change how and when you receive these notifications.
Stay on track with Task updates with email notifications for Task or Activity creation, Status updates, Expense submission, etc.
You’ll only receive email notifications based on your preconfigured settings.
F. Customer Support
Individual users in smaller teams often face a steep learning curve with most project management software.
In their case, having access to responsive support executives and a wealth of helpful resources can make a significant difference, turning a frustrating experience into a positive one.
However, customer support is just as crucial for larger teams.
Even if these teams initially received thorough onboarding and training, their needs and use cases tend to evolve over time. Continuous and adaptable customer support becomes essential to address these changing needs effectively.
With adequate customer support, you can:
- Derive maximum value from the app with the help of professional guidance whenever required
- Ensure your team is making full use of all the features you’re paying for
- Learn from case studies of other teams using the same software
- Expand your use cases with time
- Learn about the features your team uses the most and avoid spending on those you don’t need
- Solve minor issues on your end by going through help resources
- Get hands-on support when you get stuck
- Keep a record of all your complaints and feedback for the platform to aid future buying decisions
- Send feedback to the app’s developers so they can design the features you most desire
Features to look for include:
- Detailed knowledge bases and documentation to aid DIY solutions to common issues
- Case studies, templates, guides, and other resources
- Easy access to resources for all types of users — free or paid
- Async support executives to cover for the time difference
- Live agents who can respond via chat or phone
- Screenshots and recordings to display how the tool works
- Translations to resources in other languages, if needed
- Atlassian University: Product training and certification for Jira, Confluence, Trello, and more
- Atlassian Playbook: Free workshop resources to address common team challenges
- Atlassian Documentation: Help to administer Atlassian products
- Developer Resources: Build, deploy, and manage your apps while Atlassian takes care of security, computing, and storage
- Atlassian Community: Ask questions to product experts
- Atlassian Support: Resources for users and administrators
- Migration Program: Cloud migration support for all teams
- Enterprise Services: Support for enterprise teams
- Support: Email/Help Desk, Chat, 24/7 Live rep, Phone
- Webinars: Recordings of training sessions and interviews around using Accelo
- Video tutorials: Brief video walkthroughs on navigating Accelo products
- Help Guides and FAQs: Guides and answers on everything you need to know about using the tool
- Community: A space to share ideas, learn, and ask questions to other Accelo users
- Professional service: Consultative services for building workflows, configuring platforms, train your team to use Accelo
- Customer support: Email, Phone
G. Platforms Supported
Distributed and field teams might not always be armed with laptops or computers.
But that doesn’t mean productivity has to stop.
With a mobile-friendly project management tool, the workflow keeps humming along, turning those smartphones into mighty workflow tools.
More reason to look into this?
If your company follows a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) approach, your team members need the freedom to switch between various devices.
With support for all types of apps, you can:
- Ensure uniform access irrespective of device type
- Save on the cost of buying the same types of devices for the whole team
- Give all team members a chance to log work from anywhere, anytime
Features to look for include:
- App support for the latest Mac, Windows, iOS, and Android versions.
- Maximum coverage for all key features across devices
- Browser: Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Edge
- Desktop: Mac, Windows
- Mobile: iOS, Android
- Browser: Chrome, Firefox, Microsoft Edge, Safari
- Desktop: Mac, Windows, Linux
- Mobile: iOS, Android
Whether you have deep pockets or shoestring budgets, there’s project management software out there for every kind of organization.
But the confusing combination of features and numbers on pricing pages can make it difficult to choose.
Here are some easy tips for starters.
If you plan on buying the software subscription for just yourself or a small team that’s not likely to grow rapidly anytime soon — stick to the free plan as long as possible. Or pick the cheapest monthly subscription possible. These should cover most of your feature requirements comfortably in most cases.
However, if you expect to hire rapidly and grow to a sizable number, go for a plan that grows with you — ideally with a per-user rate that doesn’t add up exponentially.
Finally, most software offers flexible enterprise plans that let you cherry-pick your favorite features into a custom package. If you’re part of such a team, it’s best to contact the sales team and get the best deal possible.
Trello’s four pricing plans are as follows:
- Free: Up to 10 boards, 250 workspace commands a month
- Standard ($6/user/month): Everything in Free plus unlimited board, 1,000 Workspace commands a month
- Premium ($12.50/user/month): Everything in Standard plus extra views, Unlimited Workspace command
- Enterprise ($17.50/user/month): Everything in Premium plus unlimited workspaces, public board management, SSO and user provisioning
Accelo has the following pricing plans:
- Free Trial: Try Accelo with full access for 7 days. No credit card required.
- Professional ($50/user/month): Client Project Management, Sales Management, Quote Management, Time Logs, Timers, Timesheets, Invoices, Payments, Financial Insight Dashboards
- Business ($70/user/month): Everything in Professional plus Client Retainer Management, Ticket Management, Shared Request Inbox, Expenses & Materials, Time Approvals for Billing, Unlimited Client Portal Users.
- Advanced ($90/user/month): Everything in Business plus Advanced Custom Workflows, Advanced Triggers & Automation, Smart Scheduling & Utilization, Adaptive Project Scheduling, Client Asset Management, and 3 Advanced Reporting Users.
- Elite (Contact for pricing): Everything In Advanced plus Role-Based Users from $39/month, Divisions Module, Unlimited Collaborator Users, SAML / Enterprise SSO, Premium Support with SLAs, Dedicated Account Manager.
I. Best Suited To
Picking the right project management tool is like finding the perfect pair of shoes. They must be a snug fit but also leave you some wiggle room to get comfortable!
In other words, the tool you pick must fit all your current needs and grow alongside your future requirements, too.
So make sure you’ve covered all bases in your research when picking project management software for your team.
One way to do this is to check what types of teams your choice serves best.
For instance, what works for a small software development team might not suit a large marketing agency.
When hunting for a PM solution, it’s vital to match the tool’s features and use cases with your team’s workflow. Tailor your search to find a tool with all the necessary features to manage your tasks and boost productivity.
Trello is an exceptionally user-friendly and intuitive PM tool. It focuses heavily on visualizing work, especially on Kanban boards (though other views are available in higher-paid tiers). And its customization features make your workspaces visually engaging to make work more fun.
These factors make Trello perfectly suited to PM beginners, startups, and SMEs with relatively simple processes and small teams.
It’s also great for personal productivity and project management — E.g., if you’re a freelancer or you’re planning a big party.
The tradeoff for simplicity is, of course, limited complexity. Trello isn’t the best choice if you want to manage big projects with lots of simultaneous tasks, team members, and moving parts.
For example, Trello’s commenting functionalities are quite linear and not well-suited to multiple conversation threads at once.
There are extensive options to expand the app’s functionality with account upgrades, integrations, and power-ups. However, these will also cost extra money and time.
Packed with various features for project management, client management, sales, and more, Accelo is well-suited for large-scale businesses and enterprises. It helps manage the diverse aspects of running a business without needing multiple tools.
But is it the best choice for you?
Accelo’s extensive feature set is easy to understand and use. The segregation of Projects by Company and the distribution of Tasks within Milestones lets you create a clean breakdown of your work.
Its Project Schedule view provides an excellent overview of Task dependencies. Project managers can even add separate time and monetary budgets to each Milestone to ensure overall profitability. But the tool isn’t perfect.
Accelo’s broad offerings come at the cost of basic project management features. For example, you can’t break down Tasks into Subtasks. This can lead to your team losing focus on the subcomponents of a Task.
Moreover, it isn’t easy to communicate about Tasks on Accelo. Users need to send emails or add Internal Notes since they can’t add comments to Tasks. You also can’t customize Priority labels or set goals.
Another prominent issue is its lack of a free plan. The pricing (starting at $50/user) is also much higher than other tools in this niche. This makes it less suitable for solopreneurs, small businesses, and startups.
Still, Accelo can be a viable choice if you require a broad solution with excellent customer service to manage diverse needs.