Basecamp 3

Basecamp 3 Updates

Basecamp 3 mention · July 27, 2018

The 12 Best Team Chat Apps for Your Company

“To err is human,” wrote Alexander Pope, but he could have as easily written, “To communicate is human.” From pictograms carved into stone to the latest chat apps, humans always find better ways to communicate. It’s no surprise AIM and MSN Messenger were some of the internet's strongest...read more
Basecamp 3 update · June 13, 2018

New for Basecamp: Track Project Progress With Hill Charts

It's difficult to see the full picture and estimate how close your projects are to completion when your team's to-do list is full of unfinished tasks. Gantt charts and kanban boards can help, but the former requires detailed scheduling, and the latter can still feel ambiguous. The Basecamp...read more
Basecamp 3 update · April 16, 2017

Basecamp 3 Updates: Use Zaps to Create Campfire Messages, Plus More

Zapier's Basecamp 3 integration just became powerful. Now you can set up Zaps that automatically start real-time chats with your teammates in a project's Campfire room. In addition to automating team communication, you can now take your project management up a notch, too. Create Zaps to automatically create...read more
Basecamp 3 update · February 14, 2017

Basecamp 3 Updates: Instantly Trigger Your Zaps

Zapier now picks up on certain activities in Basecamp 3—such as new to-dos or messages—instantly. You won't need to wait five to 15 minutes for certain Zaps to kick off, thanks to these new, instant Basecamp 3 Triggers. No matter what Zapier plan you're on, you...read more
Basecamp 3 mention · December 13, 2016

20 Web Apps That Ruled the Workplace in 2016

Each year the Zapier team publishes an updated version of this report. Check the latest list of Fastest Growing Apps for this year. Few things grab the Zapier team's attention like popular new apps—and we're not alone. Whenever the next Pokémon Go or Snapchat comes out, you...read more
Basecamp 3 mention · November 3, 2016

How Basecamp Uses Basecamp 3 to Manage Team Projects and Simplify Communication

Basecamp is an all-in-one project-management software that everyone from solopreneurs and freelancers to agencies and corporations have turned to to manage all the discussions, files, tasks, and schedules critical to their work. The third release of the software, Basecamp 3, boasts a wide toolset to help anyone track and complete...read more
Basecamp 3 update · October 17, 2016

New App: Manage Projects and Client Work with Basecamp 3 and Zapier

When project deadlines are looming, you want it to be as easy as possible to see all of your files, feedback and remaining to-do’s at a glance. With Basecamp 3, your team has a secure space to work together, organize and discuss everything needed to keep on the same...read more
Matthew Guay
Reviewed by Matthew Guay
Last updated April 23, 2018

Basecamp was one of the first project management web apps, part of a family of tools to collaborate from anywhere. It was just a bit more complicated than email and blogging, with just enough features to help you get stuff done. And in its 3rd major version, it took on yet another of its sibling apps' features while continuing to simplify modern work.

Basecamp 3 keeps the tradition of the original simple project management tool going, while adding enough new features to make it stand out in its market over a decade after the original Basecamp was launched. The basics are still there: You'll still manage tasks and discuss things as a group. But you also now have team and private chat, tools to carefully share just what you want with clients, and automated check-ins to keep up with what everyone's doing without having to ask. And it's smart enough to know how to work well with remote teams, where messages come in at all hours yet you're not always on call.

Open a Basecamp 3 project, and you'll see a dashboard that's reminiscent of the main account overview in Basecamp 2. There are several cards with an overview of your tasks, schedule, message boards, chats, check-ins, and files. Select your tasks, say, and they'll open in a card layover that looks like it's on top of the base project. Click away and you'll be back at the main project, ready to jump into anything else.

Campfire chats are the largest new addition to Basecamp. Formerly a separate team chat product from 37signals, Campfire is now baked into Basecamp for one team chat group inside each project. You can also use Pings as a private campfire chat with individuals, similar to direct messages in Slack or private Facebook Messenger chats. Campfire chats are simple—you can drag in files and links, and preview things like Tweets along with chat messages. You'll see a time stamp on each message as well, and an option to add emoji or attachments to messages. It's a basic but handy way to discuss projects.

The Message Board is better for detailed discussions. It's like a private forum for your project with detailed, formatted posts and comments complete with emoji-powered "boosts" to write a quick comment and emoji when you don't need to add more detailed feedback.

Then there are Check-ins, a super-powered form of messages—a way to spark conversations about important things for your team. You can setup a check-in about anything you want: ideas, favorite books, out-of-office schedule, and much more. Basecamp will then email that question to your team on a schedule you set, and keep a log of everyone's ideas and thoughts that came in each time.

Speaking of schedules, Basecamp 3 includes a redesigned calendar to show events and due tasks in a list underneath color-coded months. To-dos can now span a time period, so you can list when a task should be started and completed and see the entire period on the calendar. Events can also span time, for a perfect way to list your retreats, out-of-office time, and more.

And when you're out of office, perhaps for a week of vacation or just are offline for the night, it's likely someone on your team is still working (especially if you have a distributed team or offices in other time zones). Basecamp 3 includes a "Work Can Wait" feature that lets you put in your work schedule, and then will only send you notifications when you're supposed to be working. It's a simple way to make sure you're not on the clock more than you should be.

There's more, too. Basecamp 3 includes a Clientside feature where you can set exactly what you want a client to be able to see, so you can chat and talk freely without worrying about a client seeing your deepest fears. You'll also find new reports that will automatically show you what's overdue, what's coming up soon, what's been recently done, and more.

It's a lot to take in, and yet Basecamp still manages to make it feel simple with its clean design. If you've been wanting a way to work together—with chat, discussions, tasks, schedules, automatic updates and more in one place—it's hard to find a tool that does exactly what Basecamp 3 does. It's a great tool for your discussion-driven projects, one that's designed to work great for remote teams.

Peek back at the history of Basecamp with our walkthroughs of Basecamp Classic and Basecamp 2.

Originally published December 18, 2015; updated April 23, 2018 with new screenshots and features.

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