Software

Notion Review: Using Notion for Project Management

Jonathan Friedman
September 14, 2020
Notion Review: Using Notion for Project Management

Notion. Maybe you've used it before for personal productivity, or perhaps you are considering using Notion for project management with your colleagues. This Notion review will help you determine if Notion is worth buying for your team to plan and execute project management. We'll also shed light on why we believe TrueNxus is a better alternative for managing projects.

In this Notion review, we'll go over some critical Notion features and their limitations and pricing to help you decide if it is the right project management tool for you and your team. Below is everything we will cover. Feel free to skip ahead.

What is Notion?

Notion is a powerful personal productivity tool. According to the WSJ, "Notion combines many of the best features of Google Docs, Excel and Dropbox, along with lots of task-management and organizational tools". It's fantastic for organizing your personal life and work-life by providing you with the following features:

Who uses Notion?

Notion is useful if you are someone who likes to stay organized. If you find yourself making checklists or to-do lists, you'll find Notion a fantastic organization tool for personal use and work. Additionally, if you work with a small team that needs to organize and perform collaborative task management or share files, you'll find Notion a dream come true. Some users are even using Notion for project management.

Advantages of Notion

Notion has a lot of benefits to offer to its customers. In this section of our Notion review we'll take a closer look at Notion pros.

1.  It replaces other checklists and to-do lists

Notion is a straightforward tool to learn, given its intuitive nature. However, that's not to say that Notion isn't hard to master. Notion is easy to learn because at the heart of the tool is its ability to help individuals, or small teams, take notes, especially in the form of checklists or to-do lists.



Before Notion, there were apps like Evernote. Maybe you are someone who takes notes offline on pieces of paper. Or perhaps you take notes in documents (i.e., MS Word, MS OneNote, Google Docs), or in spreadsheets (i.e., MS Excel, Google Sheets), or in basic Kanban board like tools (i.e., Trello). Irrespective of how you currently take notes, Notion does a phenomenal job of replacing; however, you now take notes, whether for yourself or your team.

2. Collaborate on ad-hoc, or repeatable task management

Given Notion is excellent at note-taking, it's no wonder that Notion is also a perfect option for ad-hoc or repeatable task management. If you and your team typically create checklists or to-do lists that you need for a small project or a repeatable process, you can do these in Notion with ease. Notion provides you the ability to perform task management in many views: bulleted lists, spreadsheets, or Kanban boards. Furthermore, you and your team can collaborate like Google Docs or Google Sheets, and update the text as one unit. No more emails and hand-offs.

3. Use cases are endless

The potential use cases of Notion for personal use, or work, are endless, so long as it's just for you or a small subset of people that you work with day-in and day-out, and the work is task-based.



From a project management perspective, if you need to create a meeting agenda, meeting minutes, a repeatable set of activities, or even a simple checklist, Notable has you covered. Furthermore, Notion can replace all of your notepads, spare pieces of paper, or even document-based tools like Microsoft Word or Google Docs.

Disadvantages of Notion

Unfortunately, Notion has many drawbacks and limitations when it comes to using Notion for project management. In this section of our Notion review we'll take a closer look at Notion's cons.

1. It's still just a checklist or to-do list

Notion may be the most collaborative personal productivity tool in the market. However, when you break down it's capabilities for project management, it's still just a checklist or a to-do list. Sure, Notion has various views: Table, Board, List, Calendar, and Gallery. However, each is different visualizations of a task list - you're limited to performing task management, not project management.



Also, don't take my word for it; see their website. You'll find Notion showing you an endless view of lists and a lot of wikis! If you're looking to manage projects, you won't find what you need with Notion.

Notion desktop app

2. It's nothing more than collaborative pages

At the core of what Notion is trying to do is replace the product suites like Microsoft (i.e., Word, Excel, OneNote, SharePoint) and Google (i.e., Docs, Sheets, Drive). However, we at TrueNxus would argue that they lean more toward replacing document-based products like Microsoft Word, Microsoft OneNote, and Google Docs. It also does a great job of replacing Microsoft SharePoint. If you are a power user of any spreadsheet software (i.e., MS Excel, Google Sheets, Smartsheet), Notion won't get the job done. While Notion provides you with a table-view, it doesn't have the formulas or pivot tables you need to analyze the data.



As a result, you'll soon realize that Notion is just a set of collaborative pages, and Notion does a better job of organizing all of your pages than any other tool in the market.

3. No Timeline or Gantt chart-like view exists

Project management requires the ability to view the project plan across time. Sure, Notion has a calendar and a Kanban board. However, once you have more than a few tasks that need to be executed over multiple days or weeks, or you start having dependencies, neither a Calendar nor a Kanban board will cut it. It does a terrible job at allowing you to visualize the project schedule. As a result, you'll begin looking for software with a Timeline or a Gantt chart.

For example, see TrueNxus's Timeline.

Project timeline, or gantt chart

4. Reporting is non-existent

Notion does not have any reporting capabilities, which are necessary for project management. If you are executing a project with more than a couple of stakeholders, you're going to need to monitor and report progress with more than a few bulleted lists with dates attached to them. You are going to need to pull together a project status report to track the project health, and you won't find any feature in Notion that will provide you with the capabilities to do so.

Unlike Notion, TrueNxus provides you with an out of the box status report that gives you and senior leadership the insights you all need to know to clear roadblocks, make decisions, and move the ball forward.

Project status report

5. You cannot see everything you are responsible for

Notion allows you to visualize every task you are assigned to in a specific project. However, to do this, you have to go into the page and search for your name. Then you have to do this every time.



While this is hugely inefficient in its own right, it's even more annoying and unproductive if you want to see every task you are assigned to across multiple projects, because you can't. You should be able to see everything that you are responsible for completing. Additionally, you should be able to see how others impact your work, which is task dependencies. If a task is dependent on another task, you have to go into the project and find the task and see if anything has changed.

Who has time for such inefficiency? With TrueNxus there is a section called My Work that provides you a view into everything you're on the hook for, including any dependencies that you may or may not be assigned.

MyWork

Notion pricing

Without a breakdown of Notion's pricing, a Notion review is only half done. So let's take a look at Notion's pricing.

There is a free version, but if you need more than a place to create a personal checklist, you're going to need to upgrade to a paid plan, which starts at $5/month. However, if you want to team and collaborate, you're going to need to pay $10/user/month.

TrueNxus, a better alternative

TrueNxus is the most pragmatic project management software in the market. With TrueNxus, you’ll be able to manage all of your organization’s projects. 

You’ll have all of the features you need to plan and execute projects successfully.

1. Multiple views

If you're trying to use Notion for project management, you'll soon find that project management software needs to be able to provide personalized views. A view that makes sense to you may not make sense to your teammate. These views need to be in sync as well.

TrueNxus provides you with the following views:

Project plan

List

A list is a table that allows you to manage your project plan easily. Organize the work into groups such as workstreams, or any logical way to categorize tasks.

Project timeline, or gantt chart

Timeline

Visualize the project as a Timeline, a Gantt chart like view that lets you understand how the entire project fits together. Make updates to the project plan through an interactive interface.

2. Automated project status reports

Project status report

Let TrueNxus analyze the project health real-time giving senior leadership and the project team the insights they need to make decisions and move the ball forward. Reporting may be the biggest deficiency when you try using Notion for project management.

3. My Work

View all of your work in one place

Know what you’re on the hook for delivering. View every task, and every dependency, that is important to you, across every project, in one location.

4. Dependencies

Dependencies

Be accountable when others are reliant on you. Understand dependent tasks, change implications, and adjust course as needed.

5. Automated notifications

Automated workflows - notifications

Stay productive and get notified when changes occur. With TrueNxus’s 20+ out-of-the-box automated notifications, you will have the transparency you need to stay in-the-know. As a result, TrueNxus creates efficiency by informing you immediately when changes to the overall project plan occur, such as when roadblocks impact dependencies.

6. Comments

Collaboration by comment in the webapp

Collaborate directly in the app. Communicate with project team members and chat with one another directly in tasks.

7. Project charter

OKR with a project charter

Leverage OKR and create a project charter. Collaborate as one team and establish the project objectives, benefits, and risks from the very beginning.

8. Privacy

Project privacy

Ensure confidentiality when necessary. Make projects private to create a safe place for sensitive work.

Learn more and see all product features.

TrueNxus advantages

TrueNxus disadvantages

Nothing else. We’d love for you to sign up for a free trial (no credit card needed) and let us know what you think. We love feedback!

TrueNxus pricing

TrueNxus has flexible pricing so that you only pay for what you need. Both monthly and annual plans are available. If you sign up for a yearly plan, you get 2 months free.

Pricing is simple. For teams of up to 5 users, it’s only $10/month. Then, for teams larger than 5 users, you’ll only pay for each additional user - $9/user/month. If your team size changes, your bill will be prorated.

Notion review conclusion

While Notion is a great tool, it has several drawbacks, as shown in this Notion review. Fortunately, you can use project management software like TrueNxus to solve all of Notion's limitations.  If you want even more information, like a side-by-side comparison of the two software providers, see why TrueNxus is a better Notion alternative.

TrueNxus has everything you need to plan and deliver successful projects but at a fraction of the cost of Notion.

See for yourself, and sign up for a free trial today (no credit card needed).