When comparing Asana vs Trello, the Slant community recommends Trello for most people. In the question“What are the best cross-platform task apps?” Trello is ranked 9th while Asana is ranked 17th. The most important reason people chose Trello is:
There are two primary columns: the board is shown on the left and all the other controls on the right. The main means of interaction is dragging and dropping to-do cards into the various lists. The board structure is very customizable, and includes a variety of features that help along the way: color-coding, due dates, card images, checklists with a graphics bar that allows following progress easily, and card aging for cards that haven’t been touched in a long time.
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Pro Powerful team collaboration features
Asana has fantastic mechanisms for dealing with team collaboration. Not only can tasks be assigned to team members, but Asana lets users follow tasks and use hyperlinks to refer to team members within a task.
Pro Simple workflow
The Asana task workflow within a project is broken down into "Today," "Upcoming," and "Later." The tasks themselves have the status of either done or not done. There is also a subtask feature to group tasks together. Tasks can be assigned to other team members and are stored in the "Inbox" view for processing. This replaces email for some team communication.
Pro Free for up to 15 users
Pro CSV export and print
Pro Very polished interface
Teams can have private (only visible to project members) and public (visible to anyone in the team) projects. Each member can also have their own personal projects.
Tasks can be viewed in list and calendar views. It's possible to display only the tasks assigned to the user or tasks organized by project or team. Single tasks can exist in multiple projects. Lists of tasks can be divided into sections and organized in many different ways – tasks that still have to be done, tasks that have been completed, by due date, by assignee, by popularity, etc.
Expanding a task will allow adding things like subtasks, tags, and attachments, as well as comments. Users can also subscribe to a task via RSS from this view. There's a separate view specifically for attachments.
Search lets you find what you’re looking for quickly.
Pro Tagging system allows easily filtering tasks
The tagging system enables project managers to easily filter tasks.
Pro Provides lots of help for getting started
There are many videos, tutorials, and reference documents to help you get up and running.
Pro Supports Kanban and list views
Asana provides a list view and a Kanban view which can be selected if a new project is created.
Pro Well thought out keyboard shortcuts
Keyboard shortcuts all involve the Tab key, so it is unlikely that they will interfere with shortcuts that have already been established.
Pro Integrates with Slack
It's possible to have tasks appear in a Slack channel.
Pro Simple and easy to use interface
There are two primary columns: the board is shown on the left and all the other controls on the right. The main means of interaction is dragging and dropping to-do cards into the various lists.
The board structure is very customizable, and includes a variety of features that help along the way: color-coding, due dates, card images, checklists with a graphics bar that allows following progress easily, and card aging for cards that haven’t been touched in a long time.
Pro Great real-time team collaboration features
Trello has permissions at the board level as well as the ability to assign multiple people to each card. There are a lot of sharing options available and boards can be made visible for the public. It's also possible to subscribe to a card to be notified of its progress. The simplicity of the UI makes collaboration easy because it’s very simple to see the progress of each card and who is responsible for it. It also updates constantly to reflect real-time changes in progress.
The simplicity of the UI makes collaboration easy as it’s very simple to see the progress of each card and who is responsible for it. It also reflect changes on boards in real-time.
Pro Highly flexible workflow
Trello calls items used in the workflow “cards.” Cards are double-sided and can contain subtasks as well as notes and other details.
Card columns can be used to simulate a workflow by moving cards from left to right as they are completed, or as a way of indicating task priority.
The workflow is highly flexible as the columns are completely customizable to suit the task flow. For example, tasks can be put through a workflow "idea > approved > in-progress > pending review > released" or simply "ideas > released" depending on the granularity level needed.
This makes Trello a great solution to feature management as it's possible to set up boards to handle everything from agile sprints to a more generic to-do list, all with status management.
Pro Works well for visual thinkers
The UI is based around Kanban, so you can see all your tasks and their status clearly.
Pro Excellent for groups using agile software development
The responsiveness and layers of customization make it easy for team members of various disciplines to collaborate on the same task board.
Pro Free for unlimited users
Trello offers a very generous free version that has no ads, no restrictions on the number of users, and very little restriction on how the program can be used. The paid features are generally cosmetic, such as the ability to change the background, add stickers or integration with other tools.
Each card can have one or even multiple task lists.
Pro Functionality can be extended via plug-ins
Voting, view, and calendar plug-ins further increase the functionality.
Pro Good performance
Pro Attach files to cards
Keep all of your files (images, documents, etc.) organized on their relevant cards.
Pro Features to add voting on cards
Trello offers support for features to add voting on cards, often referred to as 'power-ups'.
Pro Cross-platform and cross-sync
Trello works on all modern devices through the web application and has native apps for iOS, Android and Windows 8/10 devices.
Pro Great prioritization, Due date and Story point features
Can set different priorities to various tasks, set appropriate due dates and Story points - timing allotted to each task.
Pro Markdown support with well-rendered images
Trello supports Markdown, meaning that HTML input is represented appropriately. Cards with attachments are also rendered well. For example, images are shown correctly on the card, bug links are detected etc.
Pro Smooth media integration
Works like a charm.
Pro Great native app for Android and iOS
Pro Best kanban for personal usage
Pro Lots of API integrations
Pro Action history log allows you to rapidly follow changes
There is a global history system which allows to rapidly follow changes. There is also a notification system if another user updates the board while you're watching it.
Con Mobile version lacks calendar
Asana's calendar is present in the web version but is conspicuously missing in the mobile app.
Con Unable to manage multiple workspaces
Each "workspace" or "team" in Asana is strictly isolated. You cannot see your personal tasks versus work tasks or collaborations together, you need to log in to a different profile.
Con No task dependencies in free version
Dependencies is only available only to Teams and Organizations on Asana Premium.
Con Can not use list view and board view for a same project
Asana can only choose one, either a list view or a board view.
Con Strange UX with strange workflow
Similar to task the manager in Todoist or Wunderlist, but not too complex for under four members.
Con UX Design is overly opinionated
The workflow is not very customizable, which forces you to use a flow that may not be your preferred or best option.
Con Subtasks lack features
Every task can have a list of subtasks which more closely resembles a standard to-do list.
These lack the functions that cards offer you. You cannot comment on a sub-list, give the sub-tasks due dates, or provide additional information. You are limited to only checking them off once completed.
Con Not really a to do list
Trello is much more a workflow and project management program than a typical to-do app, which makes it overwhelmingly robust for those looking to jot down their shopping list.
Con You can't add more than 1 Power Up without paying for it
Con No multi-board aggregation
If you have multiple boards with tasks on them there is no way to get all the tasks on one board in a way that changes on one board will update the other.
Con Can't create dependencies between cards
Con Project management system only
This is cumbersome to get started.
Con Managing large projects may be difficult
Trello works best with medium to small projects and with very high-level overviews. It is less effective for projects that require very granular management due to the fact that it becomes considerably more difficult to keep track of various cards and priorities as they are pushed off the screen.
Con Impossible to use Pomodoro timer connected to Trello on iOS
Con Can't get one view of cards across all boards
However, you can view all cards assigned to you.
Con No quick deadline assignment
You have to open a Calendar every time to set a date without any quick options like today, tomorrow etc.
Con Slow and requires a lot of mouse work to navigate
Con Light on features
Trello is focused on simplicity and as such forgoes certain common features that may or may not be important to you.