23 Tools Non-Technical Agile Teams Can Use
Agile may have gotten its start in software engineering, but it’s long since moved into non-technical areas like marketing, finance, and really any kind of project-based work. That means it’s now easier than ever for a non-technical team to unlock the power of Agile working.
Still, doing that requires the right tools. We’ve compiled a list of 23 tools to get you started or supercharge your Agile work.
By far the most important single tool you’ll likely use in Agile is a project management tool. This is where you’ll track and monitor your work, ensure everyone has visibility, and call out when you’re blocked. Choosing the right tool here is key for future success.
As one of the largest and most used project management around, you’ve probably at least heard of Asana by now. It has a fairly deep feature set and is designed to work for small individual projects as well as larger enterprise ones. Its board view is also ideal for Kanban. Pricing for smaller teams starts at free so you can’t beat that. They even have a page with tips on using Asana for Agile.
Wrike goes for more of a minimalist approach to project management software, making it a good choice for Agile teams who are also passionate about reducing distractions. It’s also got excellent data reporting tools if you like to geek out on that kind of stuff. It’s free for 1-5 users, so for small teams it’s easy to try out. They also have an in-depth guide to using Wrike for Agile.
Another top project management tool you’ve probably heard of, Monday.com is big on visibility, easily allowing everyone to see what’s on their plate and what’s happening on the team more broadly. It’s free for up to 2 users, so you’re more likely to shell out for it, but the feature set is solid enough to warrant this. It also has an Agile guide.
Trello is the project management tool of choice for us here at Automagically largely because it combines extreme ease of use with some great features. Compared to the other options here, the learning curve for Trello is quite gentle. Basic plans that work for most small teams are free as well. They don’t have a set guide for Agile but you can find plenty of third party guides to show you how to get started.
This one is definitely more designed for enterprises, with powerful features but a generally more complex interface to access those features. The fact their site has no set pricing, instead asking you to request information from a salesperson should convey that quickly. However, if you’re already working with Workfront it can be an effective Agile tool.
This one is slightly different, focusing more on Objective Key Results (OKRs) rather than general project management. What that means in practice is that Gtmhub is more designed for large organizations to hit milestones as opposed to small agile teams running through sprints. That said, it can be used for Agile, but it does not have a free options and instead charges varying rates per user.
One major benefit of Jira for Agile teams is that it was basically designed specifically for Lean and Agile software development. It’s certainly powerful and has a moderate learning curve to prove it, but it’s a solid choice. There is a free plan for up to 10 users so small teams need not worry about paying.
Another interesting take on project management software, Miro is designed to function as a virtual whiteboard. This means it’s quite simple to pick up and use, but it’s also less structured than the others on this list. So if you enjoy being a little more free-form in how you approach Agile, Miro might be the perfect sandbox for you. Basic features are free and they have some good examples of how Agile teams use their tool.
Besides a tool for managing Agile projects, many Agile teams also turn to specialized software for running retrospectives.
With a focus on data and the ability for anyone to lead a retrospective, ScatterSpoke manages to offer a well-rounded set of features for running retros. There’s no free option and it starts at $35 a month for 15 users, so it has one of the more expensive entry-level options on this list, but if it works, it’s well worth it.
This retro tool combines many of the usual features with a greater focus on using anonymous surveys and action plans. It’s designed to help you identify problems and gather information from your team members, so you can supplement retros with those anonymous surveys. It starts at $39 per month, making it another relatively expensive option.
Here, the main idea is right in the name. TeamMood is designed to gather daily anonymous surveys from team members instead of limiting retros to more occasional post-sprint events. The idea is to use these surveys to identify problems before they snowball. Basic plans begin at $2 per user per month, so it might be more affordable if you’re working with a smaller team.
This is one of the more straightforward retro tools on this list, designed to mostly just run retros. One benefit of that is that it’s also one of the only retro tools to offer a free plan, although that plan is fairly limited. Still, if you simply want to run one or two basic retros each month, this is a solid choice.
Instead of focusing solely on running retros, Parabol combines this with some fun and simple project management functionality. There are fun functions like using an interactive card deck to estimate effort, and in general Parabol has fun visuals throughout. It also has the best free option of any retro software on this list, so if you want something powerful without shelling out, it’s a great option.
Instead of focusing solely on retros, TeamRetro also includes tools for regular health checks to monitor team performance and morale. So like a few other tools on this list, it’s designed to allow you to monitor your team between retros as well as conduct those retros when needed. Starting at $25 per month for a single team of up to 25 members, it’s not the cheapest or the most expensive option on this list.
(not just) Agile Marketing
While these are some of the tools we rely on as Agile marketers, they’re also potentially useful for other kinds of Agile practitioners. Whether you’re running an email newsletter, webinars, or just trying to understand what people are searching for online, these tools work wonders.
My personal favorite, Ahrefs is one of the most powerful all-in-one SEO tools around. The only organization which crawls the web more is Google itself. That’s why its backlink, organic ranking, and other key SEO data is second-to-none. It’s relatively user-friendly, although that’s always relative considering the scope of these major SEO tools. You do need to pay for all that functionality, with the lite version of the tool starting at $99 a month.
Perhaps the only general SEO tool that can hold a candle to Ahrefs is Semrush. It’s what we use at Automagically and it’s well suited for keyword research, content optimization, and link-building. In particular, it’s great for building complex keyword strategies and discovering gaps. Prices start at $119 a month with an additional $45 per user.
While Moz does a lot, including tools specifically for boosting local searches, developing content strategies, and more, it really excels at keyword research. It’s quite user-friendly and allows you to crawl your website for potential issues, conduct on-page optimization, and create custom reports. There’s a free version which you can do a surprising amount with, but pro starts at $99 a month.
They’ve been a star of the email newsletter world for more than two decades with their iconic smiling chimp logo. It’s quite user friendly with a focus on offering code-free design and email templates. You can also use it to create landing pages and signup forms to go with your emails. Pricing is fairly complex depending on what you want to do, but there is a free option that can work for most small teams.
Offering much of the same functionality as Mailchimp, Sendgrid can do a little more if you’re interested in diving into the code to get your emails just right. It also offers simple forms, automation, and solid analytics. Sending up to 100 emails a day is free with basic plans starting at just $14.95, making it an affordable option.
Another Adobe product, Marketo is a marketing automation tool but we like to use it for a more narrow purpose: webinars and events. This is because it offers a scalable way to run these kinds of events. So once you move past the early stages of ad hoc events and want to get more serious, Marketo is a good option. There’s no public pricing so you’ll need to contact a salesperson to get more information.
Agile sales may not get as much attention as Agile marketing or software development, but it’s probably the next big area where Agile is having a major impact. Here are our favorite tools for bringing the power of Agile into sales.
While early on it’s easy to use project management tools like Trello as a simple CRM, eventually you want to upgrade to a purpose-built solution. It’s a good choice for small to medium-sized businesses looking to implement Agile in their sales strategy. In particular, Agilecrm shines when it comes to integrations. It doesn’t offer as many features as something like Salesforce, but in most cases it’s got what you need. Best of all, it’s free for up to 10 users.
This is the famous powerhouse of the sales world for a reason. Salesforce offers enterprise-ready features that run a slew of multinationals. Their product is also well suited for Agile sales for a simple reason: Salesforce itself went Agile back in 2006. So the company understands the needs of Agile teams well. Pricing will vary a lot depending on what exactly you want to do and what kind of business you are.
If you want a customer support tool and an Agile sales tool, Zendesk is a nice way to get both. Compared to Agilecrm, Zendesk really shines when it comes to data, providing both an excellent dashboard full of visualizations and accompanying forecasting tools. It’s not specifically designed for Agile, but it’s still relatively easy to apply Agile sales methodologies within the platform. Zendesk for sales starts at $19 per user per month, while the customer support system starts at $49 per agent per month.
Is there anything we missed?
Got your own favorite Agile tool you think should be on this list? Let us know!