Project management software can be pretty similar to one another and confusing to new users, and Hive is looking to change that. A project manager in England can collaborate, analyze projects, and set goals for a team in Canada and visualize their progress in one click. Hive is flexible and built for hybrid teams with a beautiful interface that helps map out complex project timelines with zero effort.
Hive Compared to the Best Project Management Software
We’ve taken the time to review many of the top options for project management software available today. While Hive didn’t make our list of top picks, it is still a solid tool. Below, you’ll find our Golden Eggs, the cream of the crop based on our analysis and their wide range of usefulness to organizations of all stripes.
Hive: The Good and the Bad
Knowing what you want from your project management software is the first step to picking the best one for your business. So, we’ve made it easy to see what Hive does well and its areas for improvement, letting you stack them up and make your best decision.
What Hive Is Good At
Hive covers a lot of ground for being a PM platform with a mindset for user-friendliness. Make collaboration happen faster and better on Hive while getting better insights into your people power and other resources. Project managers can visualize work in different ways and keep tabs on progress with complete clarity.
Cross-department communication: Hive’s notes feature lets you create an agenda, plan, or brainstorming document everyone can see and interact with, adding their notes, thoughts, and contributions with everyone able to see changes in real-time. Easily sync notes with your meetings and calendar, plus add images and attachments or turn your meeting notes into a template for regular usage. Beyond that, you also get team chat and video chat for collaboration sessions, huddles, and regular meetings, plus forms for collecting department-wide or company-wide feedback with minimal effort.
Goal setting: Usually, you need to set your company goals up in separate software like Airtable or Coda, but Hive lets you set goals that are actually attached to your results within the platform, so you can see first-hand if they’re working. Look at key insights and track projects by a completion percentage, plus see exactly what’s overdue, what’s still incomplete, and what your team has finished in a straightforward dashboard. It’s beautiful.
Custom layouts and features for organization: Hive’s project layouts let you manage your projects in one of nine project views, including Kanban boards and calendars. They’ve made it easy to visualize anything you need to see. Plus, the “my actions” view lets users see every key piece of project information on one page.
Track projects with custom action statuses that will alert you when tasks need review or oversight, plus use color coding to categorize items, tasks, and other elements. Plus, control when, where, and how your notifications are delivered to you. You can even add your company branding to workspaces for a more professional look.
Intricate project planning: Hive lets you set up project timelines, plus stages and milestones to each project, so team members can’t move on until everything is done as it should be, in the order it should be.
Create better predictability with this level of planning, which gets even better when you get more granular. Create separate projects or one parent project with child projects, each having its own tasks, or link cards to one another to show any users the relationship between dependent parts of your projects.
Time tracking: Hive’s software is really good at making sure you allocate your time properly and aren’t overstaffed for a project. That’s because it can track time spent for each action and task you set up within your project, manually or automatically. You get detailed outputs on how long things are taking and even time estimates on future project deliverables with suggestions on how to best spread your resources to meet that deadline.
Free forever plan: We always love it when a useful piece of software lets you use it completely free of charge (and it’s actually functional). Hive is one of the better examples of a limited but still capable free forever plan, allowing up to 10 users to utilize different project views for an unlimited number of tasks and unlimited collaborative notes and team chat messaging.
What Hive Is Lacking
Hive can handle a lot, but it has some serious limitations you ought to consider. Two of these are slight drawbacks in terms of functionality, while the last shortcoming will matter a lot if you’re a budget-conscious organization.
Limited integrations: While Hive delivers over a dozen native integrations, it relies on Zapier integrations for some crucial pairings. For example, most CRMs, like HubSpot and Pipedrive, won’t sync with Hive except through a Zapier integration. Zapier integrations don’t inspire the same confidence and reliability that native integrations do. There are plenty of other PM platforms that integrate better with CRMs and other key software or flat-out include those functionalities within their platforms.
On top of that, any organization considering the free forever plan of Hive will need to be mindful of the handful of integrations that aren’t available unless you pay for a Hive plan, including Google Drive, Slack, Zoom, Salesforce, and Microsoft Teams.
Automations aren’t free: While a lot of features are included in the free-forever Hive plan, automation isn’t one of them. That itself isn’t unusual in the project management software space, however, Hive is actually more stingy—you’ll still need to pay $5 per user for automations on their Teams plan.
And even then, you only get access to 500 automated tasks per workspace per month. Hive is limited on this front compared to its peers, most of which include that sort of monthly limit-capped access to automations in the cost of their paid plans. And, for truly unlimited access to automations, you’ll need to pony up for Hive’s custom Enterprise plan.
Other pricey add-ons: Automations aren’t the only key feature locked behind a paid add-on to Hive’s plans. If you want access to any of Hive’s analytics, timesheets, proofing and approvals, or team resourcing, they’ll each cost you something extra per user per month. That also goes for enhanced security controls (including single sign-on) and adding access for external users to your plan.
Hive Options and Pricing
Hive’s project management software comes with a relatively straightforward pricing structure, though there are a few wrinkles to be mindful of if you want to maximize your access to Hive’s suite of features.
Hive Project Management
Managing your projects in Hive can be a breeze, so it may come as a surprise that you can tap into a not-too-limited form of this platform for free.
Get almost every core feature for project management, minus the ability to create tasks from emails or utilize custom notifications, dashboards, or analytics, on Hive Free. Never pay a dime, and you can still manage projects in Kanban, Gantt, calendar, or table view with unlimited tasks and unlimited collaborative notes. Hive Free can be used for teams of up to 10 users.
Do you need customization features, including custom views, time tracking, and integrations? Opt for Hive Teams, the paid plan that starts at $12 per user per month.
On Hive Teams, you get the full run of the platform (minus a hard limit on automation runs per month), including unlimited shareable forms and unlimited goal-setting.
However, there are some key components that are still only accessible via paid add-ons (we’ll delve into all of those in a moment). Or, you can skip the a la carte method and get even more from Hive through its custom-priced Enterprise plan. That removes all restrictions on how you can use Hive and what you can tap into, plus opens up access to the custom API and a Hive success manager dedicated to your account.
Hive Paid Add-Ons
Many appealing features of Hive can only be accessed on the Team plan by paying more of them on top of your monthly bill. While they can cause your bill to be a bit higher, they also unlock some interesting capabilities of this platform.
One of the most popular add-ons is Hive’s timesheets. Track people power, billable hours, meeting time, or any miscellaneous time spent. This lets you build more efficient workflows and see where bottlenecks are within a project. With the project baseline feature, you can also get snapshots of how long a project is estimated to take.
Hive’s timesheets can be unlocked on its Teams plan by paying an additional $5 per user monthly.
Creating automations from scratch or using one already made by the community of Hive users can save your team a boatload of time. However, you’ll also need to pay $5 per user per month for permission to run up to 500 automations per workspace per month.
If you need more unfettered access to automations in Hive, you can either talk to their sales team to work out pricing for more than 500 monthly runs or run automations to your heart’s content on the Hive Enterprise plan.
The price point of $5 per user per month applies to other key add-ons, too. If you want to add features for team resourcing, proofing and approvals, single sign-on and more intricate security controls, or external users, those will each run you that rate.
Be careful since you’re adding these on top of the monthly base rate per user. You could end up paying over $40 per user per month if you add most of these feature sets onto the Teams plan.
The one add-on priced differently is access to Hive’s analytics. Hive can take all your project data and piece together the key insights, highlighting what stands out. That way, you can divine the exact takeaways your reports are trying to tell you.
This add-on costs $6 per user per month on top of your Teams plan’s base rate. But, Hive’s analytics also add new ways to utilize other add-ons, like timesheets, in addition to Hive’s core features.
Hive in Summary
Hive is a modern project management software offering many options for viewing, managing, and planning your projects. Project managers or their teams won’t have many issues using it because of a gorgeous interface and gentle learning curve.
With that said, pricing can be a bit thorny if you can’t get enough out of Hive’s free plan. It’s a great solution for smaller teams with simpler needs or larger operations that can stand to pay for the complete package and get the most out of the Hive platform.
If you’re looking for more information about alternatives to Hive, we can help. Review our assessments of the best project management tools available, or consider one of our Golden Eggs. Monday.com or ClickUp are versatile, functional platforms that work better for teams that aren’t small enough to use Hive Free but can’t justify its Enterprise Plan offering. Or, if you are part of an organization that would love a modernized way to use spreadsheets, check out Smartsheet for your project and resource management needs.