In this blog we pitch Wrike vs Trello. If you’ve been scouting around for a project management tool that uses Kanban boards, you’ve most likely come across both Wrike and Trello in your searches. Picking the right one can be difficult, so we’ve done a side by side comparison that runs through the pros, cons and all the differences between them. We hope this helps you make the most informed decision for your project management needs.

The Wrike vs Trello Battle in Brief

If you only have a minute, here’s the Wrike vs Trello battlelines summarised in three points.

  1. Both are great cloud-based services that offer free versions for you to try.
  2. Trello is best suited for smaller teams that use Kanban boards to collaborate. Wrike has an in-built Kanban board, but it’s not as intuitive.
  3. Wrike has better all-round features, including Gantt charts, better integrations, and custom workflow management tools that are good for growing teams.

Introducing Trello

Trello is a cloud-based, Kanban-style project management tool that mainly uses boards, lists, and cards to facilitate collaboration, planning, and management. One of the biggest selling points is its simplicity and practicality. The board system gives users a quick and easy overview of tasks and progress. It was acquired by Atlassian in 2016 and has grown to over 50 million users worldwide.

Trello Pros

  • Trello has a super easy to use drag-and-drop UI. Tthe simple system of boards, lists, and cards lets users get started with little to no prior knowledge or training.
  • The free version allows unlimited users and offers basic integrations with popular services like Google Drive, Dropbox, Slack, and Jira.
  • Real-time updates and push notifications keep users updated at all times.
  • In-built communication tools allow you to collaborate directly within the app, reducing your team’s emails and switching between apps. 

Trello Cons

  • Once you step beyond the Kanban board, Trello doesn’t have a whole lot of extended features to offer. There’s no inbuilt Gantt charts, time trackers, or dependency management tools.
  • It’s also not ideal for running multiple projects or large projects. The interface is easily cluttered and the lack of effective reporting tools makes getting an overview of project progress a challenge.

Who benefits the best from Trello?

Smaller teams that are completely Kanban-based would reap the benefits of Trello’s easy drag-and-drop system, basic automations and workflow management features. 

Introducing Wrike

Wrike is a cloud-based project management tool that is also known for easy-to-use Kanban boards. However, Wrike expands beyond Kanban to focus on facilitating holistic start-to-end project management with features like interactive Gantt charts, resource management tools, real-time dashboards, active task time-tracking, and more. Free and paid versions of Wrike have become popular solutions for teams of all sizes.

Wrike Pros

  • Wrike lets you to manage all project-related activities (like resource management, schedule management and more) on a single platform.
  • Advanced task dependency, progress tracker, and automation features make it a powerful tool for growing teams who need to constantly optimise processes throughout the life of their projects.
  • In-built reporting tools, customisable dashboards, and smart Gantt charts let project managers easily manage multiple projects at the same time.

Wrike Cons

  • There’s no inbuilt message feature. This means your teams will always be dependent on third party tools to communicate.
  • Handy customisation features are only available in the premium version.
  • Wrike has a steep learning curve for first-time users. While all those tools and features are definitely useful, it does take time to figure out how to use them.
  • The reporting format is limited to PDF only. This means reports cannot be exported to other formats like Excel or be directly integrated with other reporting tools.

Who benefits the most from Wrike?

Wrike is a versatile tool for teams of all sizes who want to benefit from more than Kanban boards alone. As a full project management tool, Wrike can be scaled up to an enterprise-level and handle portfolio management activities.

Wrike vs Trello: The Side by Side Comparison

We have given you a general summary of Wrike vs Trello but here’s the side by side comparison of key features:

Wrike vs Trello: Project Management Features

While some may argue that the simplicity of the Kanban board is enough to manage projects, this is highly dependent on the size and complexity of the projects in question. Whilst Trello does have certain features beyond its Kanban board structure, Wrike takes the lead in this area.

Wrike completely covers start-to-end, project to portfolio-level management. It boasts in-built resource management, time tracking, reporting, Gantt charts, customised workflows, and much more. Teams can manage budgets, tasks, and pretty much everything on a single platform. For that reason, Wrike takes the crown in this department.

Wrike vs Trello: Collaboration Features

Surprisingly, this is where both Trello and Wrike lose big points to competitors. Neither offers an in-built messaging system, so a third-party app needs to be brought in to facilitate most project communications. Both tools, however, integrate with prominent communication tools like Microsoft Teams and Slack, as well as email services.

In addition, there is some level of in-app collaboration, mainly through mentions and comments. For Trello, users make comments on cards to explain specific needs or changes. These are all updated in real-time on other users’ devices. Wrike uses a mention approach which keeps users in the loop whilst on the app. So, on this front, both tools are tied.

Wrike vs Trello: Usability

Today, accessibility is everything. Being able to tap into your information whenever and wherever you may be is a critical asset for the modern business. Thankfully, both Trello and Wrike are available on desktop and mobile versions. However, Trello takes the lead over Wrike when it comes to language accessibility. It has over 20 language settings built-in compared to Wrike’s eight. 

When it comes to the UI, Trello again takes the lead. Sometimes less is more, and the simplicity of Trello means that new users have almost no issue starting with this tool. Many users have said that Wrike requires a steeper learning curve and many of its handy tools are hidden within the tool itself. Given Wrike’s unique way of visualising and managing projects, it may take teams a bit of time to fully acclimatise and get the most out of their tool.

Trello wins this round!

Wrike vs Trello: Integrations

Project teams are always using multiple apps or tools to manage their projects, be it a communication tool or an Enterprise Resource Platform (ERP). The most vital quality in project management software is how well it integrates with different tools.

Trello connects with 200+ tools and services , including enterprise tools like Adobe and Google Drive as well as through a custom API service known as Power-Ups. Wrike has double the amount of built-in connectors at 400+, as well as its own API development space. Through sheer quantity alone, Wrike secures a win.

Wrike vs Trello: Pricing

Sometimes a project management tool comes that is perfectly matched with all the features and tools you need, but it quickly loses its appeal due to price points. Fortunately, both Wrike and Trello offer free and paid versions so you can try them out first. Both tools have four standard subscription packages, with Trello’s cheapest package starting at $5/user per month. Wrike’s cheapest starting point is $9.80/ user per month. 

However, Wrike does offer specialised packages that cater specifically to the needs of marketing and creative teams, as well as service delivery teams. This may be a tricky battle to settle. While Trello may be cheaper, Wrike still inches out as a better investment if you are growing your team. While you may be able to run on the free version of Trello for a while, you will likely encounter challenges over time.

Check out these other articles on comparisons of project management solutions:

Is there one solution to rule them all?

Can there be one solution that brings together the best of both tools? Well, yes there is. For comprehensive and scalable PPM solutions, try pmo365

pmo365 makes bespoke project portfolio management solutions that adapt to your organisation’s specific context and requirements. But its not just a single project tool, when you subscribe to pmo365 you gain a complete library of customisable PPM apps and tools that are all connected with real-time data on a single platform. With pmo365 you gain best practice project portfolio management and connections to over 900 third party services.

If you want to find out more about why pmo365 is a leading PPM solution, make an appoiuntment to chat with one of our PPM experts today!

Laith Adel
Laith Adel