Big IT organizations are having trouble streamlining their processes. The success of every team-based initiative in a corporation depends on effective communication. Therefore, an efficient collaborative Project Management Platform is necessary for keeping tabs on company activities, as it will automate procedures and increase efficiency. A project management platform functions similarly to a digital planner, allowing teams to have a clear understanding of the company’s mission, objectives, projects and strategic initiatives required to reach those objectives, as well as have accountable members for particular tasks. In short, they help businesses spend less time on coordinating work and focus on their core jobs.

Microsoft Planner and Asana are the two most popular and commonly used project management tools. They are, nevertheless, differ in a few key aspects, and it is worth investigating these distinctions.

This article will provide a comparative understanding of Microsoft Planner vs Asana. The article will also mention the key differences between the two platforms. Read along to find out in-depth information about Microsoft Planner vs Asana.

Introduction to Asana

Asana is a well-known Cloud-based Project Management Software that is employed by businesses of all kinds. It is an excellent tool for keeping track of even the most complex and massive projects. It also functions as a platform for Task Management, Collaboration, Document Management, Workflow Management, Project Portfolio Management, and a variety of other functions.

Asana provides numerous tools for visualizing work progress, including Lists, Calendars, Kanban Boards, and Gantt Charts. It also has over 100 integrations, allowing you to work efficiently by saving time while moving between all of your apps. With Asana, you can also automate most of the time-consuming communication and collaboration duties with a few simple clicks.

For instance, Asana has a priority list with automated alerts that might help you prioritize work. To enable smoother communication, Asana has a smart inbox that allows you to send and receive all of your office messages without the use of third-party apps or services. It also lets users interact individually or in groups, as well as exchange files from their local devices or Google/Dropbox accounts. Asana allows you and your team members to attach files, offer comments, and use the Like button to compliment someone’s work with each task stated in the Asana Calendar View.

Key Features of Asana

The developers at Asana have put in continuous efforts to enhance the platform by taking regular Customer Feedback. Working to make Projects across Businesses manageable, they have come up with some of the most intuitive features:

1) Remote Access

You can go online and access all your projects from any location, anytime, and from any device of your choice.

2) Asana Timelines

Microsoft Planner vs Asana - Asana Timeline
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Through Asana Timeline, you can set stages for your project and check the status of various tasks as things get done.

3) Asana Portfolios & Workload

Microsoft Planner vs Asana - Asana Workloads
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According to different departments, you can build separate Portfolios and see an overview of each team’s performance. The Workload tab lets you see how much work is assigned to whom, allowing you to distribute responsibilities efficiently.

4) Asana Calendar View

Microsoft Planner vs Asana - Asana Calendar View
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In Asana Calendar View, you get the list of tasks assigned to you and your team that needs to be completed on a specific due date in a bird’s eye view.

5) Collaboration

Microsoft Planner vs Asana - Asana Collaborations
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With each task mentioned in the Asana Calendar View, you and your team members can attach files, leave comments, and appreciate someone’s work using the Like button. 

6) Customization

Based on your style, you can customize and design your Workflow process. You can start building Asana Calendar, Boards, Timelines from scratch or use the templates provided in the catalog. 

7) Online Communities and Support

Microsoft Planner vs Asana - Asana Support
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If you get stuck at something in Asana, there is a well-established online Asana Community Forum that can assist you to easily solve your queries so that you can quickly get back on track with your work. It also provides other resources such as Asana Help where you can get instructions from an Asana expert. You can also access webinars, training, and other courses to increase your knowledge about Asana. It also provides Asana Guide through which you can access documentation on how to leverage Asana to the optimum potential.

Introduction to Microsoft Planner 

Microsoft Planner is a Lightweight, Mobile, and Web-based software that is included with Office 365 for business subscribers. Consequently, Planner is available to anybody who has a paid Office 365 subscription, whether it’s a personal subscription or an enterprise license. 

Planner allows you and your team to make plans, assign tasks, discuss assignments, and view progress charts. It tracks activities via Kanban boards and provides detailed information on each activity. A personal view of Planner is also available, allowing users to see all of their Planner tasks across Groups and Plans. Microsoft Planner is now available in Microsoft Teams and Microsoft SharePoint too. 

Key Features of Microsoft Planner

The key features of Microsoft Planner are as follows:

1) Buckets

Unlike a traditional task list, Microsoft Planner allows you to graphically arrange and structure all of your chores. They can be shown in “Buckets” (columns) based on the theme. You can give a unique name to these Buckets too.

2) Analytics Tools

You can evaluate the project status and task progress graphically in the form of a pie chart and a bar graph. This aids in the interpretation of the data and the identification of trends.

3) Hub View

Microsoft Planner offers a primary Hub where users may get an overview of the project (or “plan” in the app’s terminology) and track its overall progress. This feature allows users to monitor who’s achieving their deadlines and who is open for new assignments. 

4) Collaborative Task Management

My Tasks displays all of your tasks, and team members can comment and attach files to the task in Outlook, Outlook Groups, Teams, and other destinations.

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Microsoft Planner vs Asana: Understanding the Key Differences

The parameters on which we can compare Microsoft Planner with Asana are as follows:

1) Microsoft Planner vs Asana: Type of Platform

The primary distinction between Microsoft Planner and Asana is that Microsoft Planner is a Task Management Tool that interfaces with Microsoft Office 365, whereas Asana is a Project Management Platform that integrates with a variety of apps. 

Any Task Management software is designed to aid in the completion of specified activities. It allows you to create tasks, name them, categorize them, and set start and due dates. On the other hand, Project Management Software is a set of technologies that all work together to help you Plan, Communicate, Organize, and Deliver Projects. It is a superset of Task Management tools by having all of their features as well as Planning, Resource Management, Task Dependencies, File Management, Time Tracking, Milestone and Event Settings, Reporting, and more. In other words, Project Management software combines several tools into one. 

As with any Project Management tool, Asana is an All-in-one Application that replaces a myriad of emails, spreadsheets, and sticky notes that come with each task with a considerably more manageable method. Asana organizes and manages your Project Flow, whether it’s a little task or a major project. You can simply assign tasks to team members, define task priorities, and check project progress with Asana, ensuring that everyone is on the same page.

2) Microsoft Planner vs Asana: Integrations

Asana is an intuitive tool for managing projects. This easy and powerful application allows you to facilitate Real-time collaboration amongst team members using their preferred platform (Slack, for example), as well as manage your projects. Asana integrates with a range of applications, including Salesforce, Tableau, Power BI, Dropbox, Gmail, GitHub, Microsoft Teams, Evernote, and others, allowing organizations to operate transparently and collaboratively while focusing on their business goals.

While Asana integrates and connects to a wide range of services and apps, it understands that your company’s projects and meetings are sensitive information and adheres to the strictest security requirements to secure them. However, there is always a risk to data when collaborating with other platforms. This may not be the case for Microsoft Planner. Since the majority of the integrations in Microsoft Planner are drawn from Microsoft itself, organizational data is always secured by Microsoft’s threat protection assurance. Some of the Microsoft Planner integrations include Microsoft Teams, Microsoft Powerpoint, Microsoft Excel. Unfortunately, Microsoft Planners does not offer the flexibility as Asana when it comes to external integration. Hence, businesses prefer Asana to Microsoft Planner for external collaboration.

3) Microsoft Planner vs Asana: Time Tracking

Microsoft Planner’s Hub view allows teams to keep track of how many tasks they’ve been allocated and how far they’ve progressed. Asana’s inability to measure time spent on a work by a member, on the other hand, implies there is no way to determine how much time was spent on a certain task. If a project requires billing by monitoring time spent on it, Asana will require third-party time tracking software. Though this is not a significant disadvantage for Asana, however, employing third-party applications for robust task tracking may entail unnecessary expenses and hassles, whereas Microsoft Planner does it for free with its Hub View feature.

4) Microsoft Planner vs Asana: Popularity

Microsoft Planner does not have a free or trial version, unlike Asana, which has a free Basic plan and offers free trials for higher subscriptions. You’ll need an Office 365 account to access Microsoft Project.

Asana offers a free subscription for teams of up to 15 individuals. It comes with some basic functions, such as an infinite number of tasks, projects, and discussions. The Premium plan, which costs US$10.99 per user each month, includes extra features like unlimited dashboards and admin controls.

Despite providing limited features in its trial version, Asana still has the edge over Microsoft Planner here, i.e., anyone looking to get started with using collaborative digital planner tools can sign up for the free trial plan and get an insight into the effectiveness of Asana.  

5) Microsoft Planner vs Asana: Support

The quality of a software vendor’s customer service might be a crucial factor in gauging the preference of the product by an organization. Your experience with the product will be determined by how fast they answer your inquiries, how they convey new functionalities, and the amount of personalized assistance you receive. Asana provides email, ticket, and training help, whereas Microsoft Planner solely provides ticketing support. However, both offer engaging community support. 

6) Microsoft Planner vs Asana: Pricing

Asana’s pricing plan is divided into four tiers: Basic, Premium, Business, and Enterprise. The Basic plan is completely free and ideal for individuals and small teams. The Premium and Business subscriptions are for teams working on many projects that want more functionality. Both are billed annually and charged per user each month. Large teams working on many projects at the same time might benefit from the Enterprise plan, which gives additional protection, management, and support.

Microsoft Planner is included as part of the Office 365 subscription license bundle. It also allows you to invite people who do not have an Office 365 license into your plan.


With the digitalization of workspaces, organizations have switched to using digital tools to foster effective communication and management of business activities. While Asana and Microsoft Planner are the two most popular collaborative workflow management tools with an overlap in terms of their capabilities, they have their own set of benefits and drawbacks, as well as different target audiences. Before making a final decision, it’s critical to consider all of the variables. It takes a lot of consideration to choose the proper software for your team, but it all comes down to finding a solution with features that fit your company’s demands.

In this article, you have learned about the comparative understanding of Microsoft Planner vs Asana. This article also provided information on Microsoft Planner, Asana, and their key features.

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Preetipadma Khandavilli
Freelance Technical Content Writer, Hevo Data

Preetipadma is passionate about freelance writing within the data industry, expertly delivering informative and engaging content on data science by incorporating her problem-solving skills.

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