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Wrike vs. Asana: Which project management app is best? [2024]

By Juliet John · May 7, 2024
Hero image with the logos of Wrike and Asana

If you're in the market for a new project management app, you've likely come across Wrike and Asana. They each pack a powerful set of features to help teams of all sizes organize their work more efficiently. But while they have a lot of similarities—and appeal to similar audiences—they do offer different experiences.

I've used Asana quite a bit, and I dove deep into Wrike for this piece, testing each app in depth to help you figure out the best project management tool for your team. Here's my take on how they stack up.

Wrike vs. Asana at a glance

Here's a quick summary of the main differences between Wrike and Asana, but keep reading for more details on each app's strengths and weaknesses and my experiences testing them. 

  • Asana is best for small-to-medium businesses. With its generous free plan, easy-to-use interface, and collaboration tools, it provides an easy way for teams to manage tasks and enhance productivity. 

  • Wrike is better for larger teams and more complex projects. It offers a more structured way of organizing projects, includes budgeting capabilities, and has more customization options.

Asana

Wrike

Ease of use

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Minimalist and clean interface that's easy to navigate

⭐⭐⭐⭐ Slightly cluttered interface that can be confusing at first

Collaboration 

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Comes with a dedicated inbox for chatting; offers task comments and mentions

⭐⭐⭐⭐ No inbox; offers task comments and mentions

Customization 

⭐⭐⭐⭐ Offers customizable views—but not as many as Wrike

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Lots of customizable views for task management

Pricing

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Generous free plan and allows you to pay monthly 

⭐⭐⭐⭐ Also great free plan but only offers annual billing

Integrations

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Integrates with 100+ third-party tools, including Zapier 

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Integrates with 400+ third-party tools, including Zapier

Ideal user

Small-to-medium businesses looking for an easy way to manage tasks and projects

Larger businesses managing projects across several teams

Both tools are easy to use, but Asana offers a smoother experience

If you're looking for a project management tool that's easy to set up and use immediately, you can't go wrong with either option. When you create an account with either tool, it'll guide you in setting up your first project with tasks, teammates, and the layout that works best for you. 

But once you're set up and inside the dashboard, you'll immediately notice that Asana delivers a smoother user experience. When I log in to Asana, I see a clean dashboard that gives me a quick summary of all my projects, tasks, and collaborators. Then there's a left navigation pane with tools and features neatly organized and labeled. (Asana even lets you sync your dashboard with your system's settings for a more custom look and provides accessibility options.)

The Asana dashboard

Wrike, on the other hand, feels more cluttered. Whenever I log in, it opens up a project with a bunch of features, including settings and groups. There's a left navigation pane with spaces, tools, and projects in a collapsible folder system. You'll eventually figure out what each item means, but the interface will continue to feel more cramped and less easy than Asana. 

The Wrike landing page

And while both apps offer plenty of different views, Asana makes it easier to access them by providing multiple views by default for you to choose from.

The tabs to toggle between views in Asana

With Wrike, you only get a table view by default, and you'll need to enable other views to see your project differently. It's not the end of the world, but it's a good indication of how much more streamlined Asana is.

Asana has more robust collaboration features

Asana and Wrike are both built for collaboration, so they offer all the basics. In both tools, you can add dependencies, share files, and use portfolio/workload tracking to manage work efforts. But beyond that, Asana provides more ways to streamline communication and improve collaboration. 

For example, both tools offer proofing, a feature that lets you add visual feedback to creative assets. But Asana takes it one step further and automatically turns your feedback into subtasks, assigning it to the person who uploaded the asset. You can attach a due date to the subtask, and teammates can comment on it and ask clarifying questions as they work through the edits. Making it a subtask helps keep all the feedback in one place, so team leads or stakeholders can efficiently track updates and get the context they need to give approvals.

Asana's proofing feature

In contrast, Wrike only lets you tag teammates to comments when proofing images or files.

Wrike's proofing feature

Asana also lets you manage team communications in a dedicated inbox. Each project has a Messages tab where you can converse with the entire team or a select few. This feature is super helpful for holding focused or even casual, non-work-related discussions without cluttering individual task comments.

Asana's Messages tab

With Wrike, there's no way to centralize your conversations in one place—you can only comment on tasks.

Wrike is more customizable and has more tools for big teams and advanced project management

Asana and Wrike both offer all the important basics you need from a project management app:

  • Tables/lists, Kanban boards, Gantt charts, and calendars for creating and visualizing tasks

  • The ability to add files to projects and tasks

  • Time tracking

  • Task dependencies

  • The ability to create workflows and use automation rules to streamline them.

But if you're planning a complex project or managing lots of teams, Wrike is a bit more up for the task.

Let's start with its project organization system. Most project management tools (including Asana) allow you to create projects and then break them down into lists of tasks and subtasks. That's a straightforward way of organizing simple projects. 

Wrike, with its spaces and project folders, brings a unique way of organizing work into hierarchies. Wrike's system is really customizable and perfect for users who prefer to organize work in different ways—e.g., by client, team, or function. You can set up spaces for various company departments or teams (e.g., Marketing) and then categorize your work in those teams into folders (e.g., social media marketing campaigns, email marketing campaigns). Folders can contain different kinds of individual projects your team will work on. Then, you can break these projects into tasks and subtasks for teammates to handle. 

Wrike's navigation hierarchy

This level of organization might be too much for a small team just looking for a simple task list. But it's beneficial for larger organizations with an unruly amount of projects and data to track. You'll also get precise control over who can access these spaces, folders, and projects to ensure the safety of your data.

As you create projects, Wrike lets you estimate and track financials by assigning budgets to individual tasks (via custom fields) if you're on the Business plan. Wrike can even calculate those budgets automatically when you enable formulas. These features make financial management easy without the need for a third-party tool.

Wrike's budgeting option

On higher-tier plans, like the Enterprise Pinnacle, you'll get a complete set of financial features with predefined fields that automatically calculate your project's essential financial metrics. Asana, on the other hand, has a formula custom field but doesn't have any true budgeting features.

Wrike also gives you more customization options than Asana. You'll get multiple customizable calendars that you can assign to specific teams and projects; and in addition to the standard project views (list, boards, calendar, Gantt/timeline), it offers others: resources, time log, analytics, stream, and chart. You can customize each of these views to specific objectives or preferred work styles.

Wrike's extra view options

Pricing is comparable, with a few quirks

Wrike and Asana both offer solid free plans, but Asana's is a bit more generous: it includes access to a calendar view and basic reporting, which Wrike locks behind its paid tiers.

After the free introductions, Wrike starts at $9.80/user/month. It's a hair cheaper than Asana ($10.99/user/month), but Wrike's plans are only billed annually, so if you just need a tool for a short time, it's not ideal. Wrike's plans are also capped based on the number of users—for example, you can only have up to 25 users on the cheapest plan. That makes it less attractive for businesses that need its advanced features but have fewer team members. Meanwhile, Asana allows you to have up to 500 users on any plan.

Both tools integrate with third-party tools, including Zapier

With 400+ integrations, Wrike integrates natively with more apps—especially marketing and financial tools—so you can have a single source of truth for your entire business. 

But both Wrike and Asana support Zapier, so you can connect them to thousands of other apps. Learn more about how to streamline your Asana workflows, or get started with one of these templates.

Create Wrike tasks from Jotform form submissions

Create Wrike tasks from Jotform form submissions
  • Jotform logo
  • Wrike logo
Jotform + Wrike

Add tasks from Wrike to Todoist

Add tasks from Wrike to Todoist
  • Wrike logo
  • Todoist logo
Wrike + Todoist

Add new Google Calendar appointments to an Asana task list

Add new Google Calendar appointments to an Asana task list
  • Google Calendar logo
  • Asana logo
Google Calendar + Asana

Create Asana tasks from new Google Forms responses

Create Asana tasks from new Google Forms responses
  • Google Forms logo
  • Asana logo
Google Forms + Asana

Zapier is a no-code automation tool that lets you connect your apps into automated workflows, so that every person and every business can move forward at growth speed. Learn more about how it works.

Asana vs. Wrike: Which is best for your team?

In terms of core features, Asana and Wrike are pretty alike, so deciding on the best one for your team honestly might come down to testing them to see which one feels the best. Since both offer generous free plans and solid trials, you can poke around in both. As you do, here are some guidelines to keep in mind:

  • Asana will serve you well if you have a smaller team or are looking for a simple tool with no learning curve.

  • Wrike is better if customizations are essential to your workflow and you want more than basic task lists and boards. 

Related reading:

  • The best free project management software

  • ClickUp vs. Asana: Which is better?

  • Asana vs. monday: Which is best?

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