General Information
Name: activeCollabVendor: A51Hosting options: Web hosted and locally hostedCost: From $25 for a small cloud hosted option to $2999 a year for a mega cloud option, and reasonable locally hosted prices too.Languages:English as standard with the option of downloading German, French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Swedish. You can also translate it into your language by following the documentation.
Basic features: Creating projects, tasks, and people
It is easy to create a new project via the Projects tab. Fill out the project form by clicking on “New Project” You can choose the leader, category (or add a new one from this screen if you don’t see the one you want – it’s much easier than having to click away and go to settings), client, budget, and currency. Only Client and Leader are mandatory. Leader, I presume, is the project manager. This terminology change may be a reflection of the current trend in project management to talk about project leadership. The Project homepage provides a summary of the most recent activities and details about the project.
ActiveCollab: Creating a task You can purchase an add-on if you host the product on-premise. However, I am not sure if it would work with the online version. This is a common theme for additional bits. I think there are many good add-ons that users would like. It would be helpful to have a note on the sales page that clarifies whether the add-ons work with the cloud-hosted online packages.
Okay, let’s get back to creating tasks. You can click on the Tasks header to create a new task from the Project homepage. The form is similar to the Project tab. You can add a category (or add a new one if you don’t see it in the dropdown), priority, visibility (normal/private), due date, estimated in hours or minutes (default numbers are available, but you can change them if you have a job that takes, say, 50 hours). You can also indicate the job type required, such as support or programming (but you cannot add new types). Label it and add people. If you have the right tasks, you can also set Milestones. You can also create tasks using activeCollab’s Gmail and Google Apps email filters. However, I have not tested that feature.
As you can see there is a lot more flexibility and customization available. The same applies to resources. You can invite people by email to the system and assign different roles, such as Client, Manager, Member/Employee and Subcontractor. It is great that clients can have limited access to the system, but they can still participate in discussions. You can personalize the welcome message when inviting someone new. This is especially important for outside parties who might delete spam-like mails. You can change the default permissions to give you more control.
View your project
This is where I felt the product was lacking. I’m sure I’ve reviewed other project management software tools that don’t have a Gantt charts, but activeCollab was so great it deserved a Gantt Chart. Although there is a Timeline view that is basically a Gantt chart, it is not available to you for project use. A milestone chart is also available, which looks a lot like a Gantt chart.