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10  min read

How to Use Trello for Project Management

Abhishek Agrawal
By Abhishek A Agrawal
March 14, 2022
Table of Contents

    Being a Project Manager is not an easy job, you need to have great organizational skills, be able to multitask, and most importantly, be good at time management. If any of these are not your forte, then lucky for you, we live in the 21st century where technology has our back!

    There are a plethora of project management tools out there but today we are going to focus on one that is flexible, easy to use and best of all- free to start with! And, that tool is Trello.

    Trello is a web-based application that operates as a bulletin board system where users can create boards to effectively organize their projects and tasks.

    Go through this post to know why Trello is the best choice for project management, and how you can start using it for your projects.

    Also, explore some of the most popular Trello templates for project management, and get answers to some frequently asked questions.

    Keep Reading!

    Why is Trello good for project management

    It goes without saying that project management is a complex task. And it becomes all the more difficult when you have to manage it single-handedly.

    Trello comes to your rescue and helps you efficiently manage all of your projects from one place!

    Here are some of the reasons why Trello is great for project management-

    1. Flexible:You can create boards for all your projects. Or, you can even divide a single big project into multiple boards. It’s solely up to you how to use it.

    2. Easy: You don’t need any prior experience or training to start using it. All you have to do is sign up for a free account, and you’re good to go.

    3. Visual interface: It makes use of cards for everything, that makes it easy to understand and track. Also, you can use comments for effective team communication.

    4. Organized: As Trello uses cards to organize everything systematically, you can quickly find any information you want. Also, to get a quick overview of the entire project, you can always check the dashboard.

    5. User-friendly and easy to understand. Even if you are not very tech-savvy, you will be able to use Trello without any difficulty. Plus, you can access Trello on the go from your phone or tablet.

    6. Free: The best part about Trello is that it’s standard features are free to use! You can add as many team members as you wish, and create 10 boards and unlimited cards. There are no hidden charges at all.

    Now that you know why Trello is a good choice for project management, let’s see how you can start using it.

    How to Use Trello for Project Management

    To start with Trello, you first need to Sign-up for a free account. You can use any of the following accounts to sign up

    • Google

    • Facebook

    • Microsoft

    • Slack

    • Apple, or

    • You can create a new account with your email id.

    Trello Signup Page

    Next, you need to create a workspace (by giving a suitable name) and invite your team members (optional)

    Trello Workspace

    Once your workspace is set up, next you need to create a board for your project. You can either create a new board or use an existing template. Board is a workspace where you can add lists and cards.

    Trello Board

    Give a suitable title to your board and set it’s visibility to either of the following :

    • Private (Only board members can see and edit)

    • Public (Anyone on the internet can see the board but only the members can edit)

    • Workspace (All members of the Workspace can see and edit the board)

    Trello Board Edit

    Next, you can add lists to your board. Lists are used to organize the various tasks involved in your project. For example, you can have a list for ‘To Do’, ‘In Progress’, and ‘Completed’.

    By default, Trello adds 3 lists to your board :

    • To-do

    • Doing

    • Done

    Trello Board

    You can add new lists to the board by simply clicking the ‘Add New List’ button. Give an apt title and click on the ‘Add List’ button. That’s it !

    Trello Board Add List

    Trello board add list

    After lists, you can also add cards to your board. Cards are the actual tasks to be completed for the project.

    Trello Cards

    You can also add the following to your cards :

    • A brief description of the task so that everyone is on the same page

    • Set a due date for the card and get reminders as it approaches

    • Assign labels to your cards for easy identification

    • Add team members to work on the project with you

    • Upload any attachments related to the task

    • Create checklists of subtasks that need to be completed

    • Have a discussion with your team about the task at hand using comments

    • Use cover photos to add a visual flair to your cards

    Trello Meeting

    You can then assign specific team members to each card, so that everyone knows who is responsible for what task.

    Trello also has a great feature called “Power-Ups”. It allows you to connect your Trello board with other applications such as Gmail, Google Drive, Evernote, Slack and many more so that you can easily access all the information related to the project from a single place.

    To add a power up to your workspace, click PowerUps in the Menu.

    PowerUps

    You can then find the application from the available ones and add them.

    Trello Applications

    You can even automate many of your tasks using Trello’s automation feature. You can find it in the top right corner of your board.

    Trello Automation

    There are 3 types of automations you can opt for:

    • Rules: They are the most basic type of automation and allow you to specify a condition that must be met (like action, schedules, or a card’s due date) for the automation to run.

      For example, you can create a rule that will automatically move cards from the ‘To Do’ list to ‘In Progress’ list when the due date is reached.

    • Buttons:You can create buttons on the back of every card or at the top of the board. Buttons can be used to trigger an automation with a single click.

      For example, you can create a button that will automatically move all the cards from ‘In Progress’ to ‘Completed’.

    • Email reports: Set up email reports to get a weekly or monthly summary of your board’s activity.

      This way, you can keep track of the progress made by your team without having to login to Trello every day.

    Further, you can also use Filters to search cards assigned to members, or the ones that are due etc

    Trello Filters

    To know in detail about each feature and it’s use, do checkput our Trello Guide (https://blog.integrately.com/how-to-use-trello)

    Besides all the above features, an integration that is most widely used by many Project Managers is to sync Trello with Google Calendar. The reason being you can then view your calendars and your cards with due dates together in one place.

    How to sync Trello with Google Calendar

    To sync Trello with your Google Calendar, enable the iCalendar feed and find the iCalendar URL for your board using the below steps : 

    1. Open the board menu

    2. Under Power-Ups, Click Calendar. Enable the Power-Up if you haven’t already by clicking Add Power-Up.

    3. Once there, click Edit Power-Up Settings. Alternatively, you can open the Calendar Power-Up from the board view and click the gear icon.

    4. Copy the URL from “iCalendar feed.”

    Calendar Setting

    Next, open Google Calendar, and click the ellipsis icon next to “Add calendar” on the left side. Click on From URL

    Add Calendar

    From URL

    Paste the iCalendar URL into the box, and click Add calendar

    Add Calendar

    Google Calendar will add your Trello board calendar and it will be assigned a color. You’ll find the calendar listed under the Other calendars section of your Google calendar.

    Other Calendar

    That’s it! You have successfully integrated your Google calendar with your Trello Board calender and will start getting the notifications for all the events.

    Now that you know how to get started with Trello, Power it up and sync it with Google calender, it’s time to start using it for your next project!

    But wait, we’re not done yet! In the next section, we’ll take a look at some of the best templates for managing different types of projects.

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    Top 5 Trello templates for project management

    There are several great templates available in Trello that you can use for project management. 

    Sharing here the 5 most popular ones: 

    The Project Management Template

    Track and manage all aspects of your project (big or small) in one place with this template. It comes with the following lists :

    1. Resources: A list for you and your team to have all those frequently referred papers, specs, designs, or other things handy. You can also add your meeting schedules and FAQs to this list.
    2. Questions for the next meeting: Organize all your questions in this list so that your team can continue to operate.
    3. To-Do: List out all your activities in this list to enable the team to understand what must be completed and when.
    4. Pending: This list is for those pesky waiting games. Cards go here when you’re waiting on someone else before you can move forward (e.g. “waiting on the client to approve design”).
    5. Blocked: Use this list when you and your team hit a snag. Cards go in this list when someone can’t move forward on their task because they need something from someone else first (e.g. ” waiting on the designer to finish logo”)
    6. Done: It is the list is where all the magic happens. Move your cards to this list to track your progress and celebrate your wins!

    Project Management

    Simple Project Board

    This template is perfect for those who want to keep things simple. It consists of just 4 lists to organize your work:

    1. Brainstorm: A great place to put all your ideas and thoughts. You may have discussions about “Why you want to do it, What it is, and how you intend to accomplish it.”

    2. To-Do: All the tasks that need completion get added to this list

    3. Doing: All your ongoing tasks go into this list

    4. Done: Breathe a sigh of relief once your card enters this list. Task accomplished!

    Simple Project Board

    Agile Board

    This template is a perfect fit for those who work in an Agile environment. It consists of the following lists:

    1. Done: Add all your completed cards here

    2. Current sprint: Stay updated on the ongoing tasks by adding them to this list

    3. In-progress: A list for all the in-progress and not yet completed cards 

    4. On-hold: Place the cards pending for decisions into the list.

    5. Next-up: Add all your lined up tasks into the list.

    6. Questions: It can hold all your questions about the sprint/project

    7. Marketing ideas-icebox: If you have marketing ideas yet to be implemented push them to this list

    8. Junk drawer: To dump all the cards which don’t fit in any of the other categories, or are no longer required.

    9. Room for improvement: A room for all the cards that need improvement

    10. Content ideas: Line up all your content generation ideas here 

    11. Awesome things win: A list for all those awesome things you want to share with everyone

    12. Would love to do – manifest: A list of all the things which you want to do, but haven’t found time for.

    13. Resources: Keep all your required resources handy by adding them to this list.

    Agile Board

    Client Workflow management

    Created by an Attorney, a perfect template for those who want to keep track of their client’s work and go paperless. Especially suited for the law firms, it consists of the following lists:

    1.  New client Onboarding: Use this list to add information about your new clients like company name, address, contact information, case type, and more

    2. Attorney assigned: Keep a track your client-attorney mappings here.

    3. Doing: Organize all your current tasks in this list

    4. On Hold: A place to add all the tasks on hold (for some reason or the other) 

    5. Win: Add all the tasks completed and won by your firm to this list.

    6. Lost: Add all the tasks lost by your firm to this list.

    Client Workflow

    Program Management Template

    A simple and easy-to-use template for program managers to quickly bootstrap their PMO teams. It consists of the following lists :

    1. Focus objectives for the Quarter:  Use this list to add all your objectives for the upcoming months

    2. Key performance indicators for the quarter: Add your KPIs like successful project delivery, on-time completion, happy clients, and more to this list.

    3. Metrics & Reporting : This list is for all the metrics and reports like the number of projects completed, average project duration, budget spent, etc that you need to track.

    4. Milestones and Important dates: Use this list to remember all the important things

    5. Risks and Dependencies: List all your risks, and dependencies like budget overages, missed deadlines, etc to this list

    6. Finance and Budgeting: tUse this list to keep track of your finances and to add all your budgeting information

    7. Open Requirements: A list to track all the requirements which are yet to be completed. For example, new vendor onboarding, new employee recruitment, etc.

    8. Release Management: Use this list to manage all your tasks like upcoming releases, code freeze dates, testing and QA, go-live dates, etc.

    9. Training and certifications: Everything you need to keep track of your team’s training and certifications can be added here

    10. Event Management:  A list to keep yourself organized and track all your events.

    11. Newsletter: Manage your quarterly/ monthly/yearly news in this list.

    Program Management Template

    Now that you have these project management templates handy,  you can easily get started with Trello and manage your projects like a pro.

    Conclusion

    In conclusion, with ready to use templates and  all those useful features Trello proves to be an excellent project management tool. It is not only easy to learn and use, but can also be customized to fit your specific needs.

    If you are looking for a way to organize and track your projects, Trello is definitely worth considering. Give it a try today!

    Furthermore, you can automate your project management process to  a great extent using our Automation Tool – Integrately.

    You can  easily connect Trello with hundreds of apps and stay on top of everything. Spend only a few minutes initially and be carefree afterward. No technical skills are required!

    Save yourself lots of time & money. 

    Just find your automation here and activate it.

    Try out for Free : https://bit.ly/3IZFr1B

    FAQs about Trello

    Is Trello a project management tool?

    Yes, Trello is a project management tool. It is perfect for managing small to medium-sized projects.

    Is Trello project management free?

    Yes, Trello offers a free plan with basic features. It also has paid plans with more extensive capabilities.
    Abhishek Agrawal
    Author - Abhishek A Agrawal
    Abhishek is the founder of Integrately, CompanyHub, and Dreamwares. He is passionate about technology and entrepreneurship. He is always looking to leverage technology for the growth of the business. He has a deep understanding of how businesses work and uses this knowledge to build products that help entrepreneurs grow their businesses.
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