7 Best Resource Guru Alternatives: Guide to Top Competitors
Whether you’re running simple or complex projects, streamlined resource management is the key to good outcomes.
However, this might be easier said than done. In the latest Wellingtone State of PM Report, poor resource management was named as part of the top three agency project management challenges. This is why implementing a resource planning tool, such as Resource Guru, can significantly boost your business operations.
But is it the best option around, or is there a Resource Guru alternative that might suit your agency’s needs better?
In this article, we’ll help you answer this question by providing a detailed comparison of Resource Guru and some of the most popular project management software alternatives. But first, let’s get started with a basic question: what’s Resource Guru, and how do users feel about it?
Why Consider Resource Guru Alternatives?
Resource Guru is a resource management and scheduling solution tailored to agencies and teams from all industries, from construction to creative agencies. It aims to help project managers keep their projects on track by mainly supporting the management of human resources.
The online scheduling software has an aggregated score of over 4.5 stars on Capterra na G2. Despite largely positive reviews, users do have some minor frustrations with the tool, such as:
- There is no platform notification system for adding or changing bookings
- Limited integration options with other agency tools for project management
- The app is not intuitive enough, making the tool difficult to use on mobile devices
- The most affordable plan doesn’t include reporting
- Some reviewers have noted that they would appreciate more video onboarding materials
Positive reviews underline that the tool does what it’s designed to do, and that its simplicity makes it easy to implement and onboard teams: “It only really does one function, but it does that function very well” (Source: Capterra).
See more: Resource Planning Guide: How To Optimize Your Project Planning
Our Shortlist of the Best Currently Available Resource Guru Alternatives
To create this list of the best Resource Guru alternatives, we’ve looked at solutions currently on the market with resource management capabilities, but also a notable differentiating factor. We’ll examine them by their key features and give you a recommendation depending on your potential challenges.
Without further ado, here’s our list of the best project management solutions for resource planning:
1. Productive – The Best All-in-one Software Alternative to Resource Guru
Productive is an all-in-one agency management software for agencies of all shapes and sizes, designed to be the single source of truth for all agency operations. It includes a wide variety of key features that support daily agency processes, including advanced resource and absence management, as well as budgeting and financial forecasting capabilities.
Users of Productive report the following:
If I had to choose the main benefit of switching to Productive, it would be having visibility of everything in one place: from sales through resources, projects to delivery, plus the time logging and profitability figures in one place—being able to track the end-to-end lifecycle of a project.
Let’s explore how Productive can help you streamline your processes and manage all your agency resources successfully.
When it comes to its Resource Planning feature, Productive doesn’t lag behind Resource Guru. You can create high-level plans and book your team’s hours with various allocation methods: By setting a percentage of overall employee capacity or total billable hours that a particular booking should cover, or by entering specific hours per day. These bookings will be created automatically.
Additionally, Productive incorporates various types of leave into its employee scheduling. When it comes to holidays, you can input holiday calendars per country, which will automatically populate it with days off. Compare this with Resource Guru’s system, which has been criticized by certain reviewers:
The thing that I like the least is that the software currently doesn’t have as many capabilities for calculations and financial tracking. I wish there was more abilities to track expenses and project costs in relation to the work you have tracked.
You can also define additional agency-specific absences, allocate the number of days per each, set them as paid or unpaid, and even input which employees are eligible for them. Within the platform, employees can also request time off and get approvals from specific managers or other designated roles, eliminating the need for an additional tool to perform this.
Finally, Productive’s resource planning also enables advanced forecasting features. By creating your bookings and associating budgets to your projects, you can get forecasts of your budget spending throughout your project’s lifecycle. If you change anything, this will be reflected in your forecasting, letting you create and test out different scenarios. Additionally, you can switch to the profitability view to get insights into your forecasted profit and profit margins.
Forecasting also works for utilization, one of the most crucial but underemphasized agency metrics, considering that only 35% of agencies reported that they track their billable vs actual utilization in the 2022 SoDa Report.
With Productive, you can view your resource capacity per various metrics, including team, seniority, skills, and more, and gauge whether you have the ability to take on new projects. Use placeholders for scenario planning and check your hiring needs.
That’s a key thing that we get out of the reports that really feeds into our utilization and resourcing. If we know we’re doing 30% on internal projects, then we know we’ve got the capacity to take on more client work.
Unlike Resource Guru, Productive offers project management features alongside resource scheduling. First is the integrated Time Tracking feature: Productive features an embedded timer that can be placed on the desktop to make tracking easier, as well as the ability to manually input your hours after the fact. You can lock entries after a certain point of time, approve them, or request changes in case data is missing.
Another great feature is automatic time tracking — when you book your team’s time with resource planning, you can set up your tracking so that entries are created accordingly.
See also: 13 Best Agency Time Tracking Software in 2023
Productive also provides all of the essential features you would expect from collaboration software, such as the option to switch between six different project views, including Gantt and Kanban-style. Furthermore, you can get simplified task management with subtasks, milestones, an activity log that you can filter by comment type, as well as automatic notifications that can be customized by devices and desired frequency.
Compared to Resource Guru, a feature that is unique to Productive is Budgeting. Other than human resources, your finances are the next step to your agency’s success, and Productive can help you keep a closer eye on them. Build hourly, fixed-price, or mixed budgets on the platform to unlock advanced project management capabilities, which include financial reports with forecasting capabilities and accounting tools.
Because Productive is set up in a way that each project is associated with a budget, your teammates can immediately track hours against these budgets. This also lets you set up automatic warnings for your spending: input the percentage of billable hours fulfilled before you receive an alert, and then check how much work has actually been done to see whether you’re on the right track.
With Productive, you can be sure that your decisions will be based on accurate data:
This is a person, this is how much that person makes, this is our overhead, this is how much we’re charging our client. The tool gives us full transparency, across the board. From our standpoint, Productive erases the seed of doubt.
When it comes to support with repetitive tasks, Productive’s budgeting also enables Billing. You can generate brand-friendly invoices and send them to clients directly from the platform. To speed up the process, you can also automatically build and attach your timesheets. This can have a positive impact on your finances by stabilizing your cashflows.
Additionally, Productive also offers easier job cost management with Purchase Orders. See how your purchase orders affect your budget, send them directly to suppliers and monitor your payments, all on one platform.
Related: Top 7 Project Budget Management Tools: Optimize Your Project Budgeting
Reporting is one of the features that Resource Guru and Productive share. Some users of Resource Guru have reported some downsides — more specifically, that they needed to integrate the software with another tool in order to “get the full picture of time actually spent on projects rather than just time scheduled” (Source: Capterra). Another reviewer commented:
Probably a feature that I am unaware of but, it would be good to filter and schedule time spent versus original allocation.
Since Productive has built-in time tracking and budgeting, you can check actual utilization across your teams. In fact, you can choose between 50+ agency-focused reports, or use custom fields to input parameters that might not be covered by the platform.
By scheduling projects to your email with Pulse, you can stay on track with key agency metrics without even having to open the platform. Additionally, you can create custom dashboards and share them with particular employees or teams.
- Plans start with the Essential plan at $9 per user per month, which includes essential features such as budgeting, project & task management, docs, time tracking, expense management, reporting, and time off management.
- The Professional plan includes custom fields, recurring budgets, advanced reports, billable time approvals, and many more for $24 per user per month.
- The Ultimate plan has everything that the Essential plan and Professional plan offer, along with the HubSpot integration, advanced forecasting, advanced custom fields, overhead calculations, and more for a custom price.
- You can also check out the Enterprise Plan with custom pricing for companies that would include more than 50 active users per month.
You can check out Productive with a 14-day free trial before you decide to subscribe to a paid plan.
Streamline Your Resource
Get an all-in-one agency platform that combines your resourcing, project planning, and budgeting.
2. Float – A Fine Alternative for Advanced Management of Resources
Float is a resource scheduling and management platform for agencies of all sizes. It provides a clear overview of resource availability to help managers plan projects.
- Calendar and local holidays syncing
- Time off scheduling and approval
- Capacity planning with placeholders
- Pre-filled timesheets based on scheduled tasks
Float is a good Resource Guru alternative. It provides many of the same features, with added basic employee time tracking and budget monitoring functionalities. When it comes to pricing plans, Float is slightly less affordable than Resource Guru’s most basic plan, which might make it less approachable to small agencies and startups.
Consider the tool if: You’re looking for a slightly more advanced project-tracking solution that is still streamlined in comparison to robust business performance software. However, keep in mind that some users have mentioned that reporting could be more intuitive and easier to put together, so it might not be suitable if this is something your agency is focused on.
3. Teamdeck – A Good Option for Project Teams With Freelancers
Teamdeck is a resource management and workforce planning software that helps managers keep track of their capacity, including internal teams and freelancers
- Automatic warnings for booking overlaps
- Hourly availability for part-timers and freelancers
- Leave management capabilities
- Timesheets for tracking employee time
Users enjoy Teamdeck for its simplicity and visual user interface, but some frequently mentioned cons are the reporting and budgeting side of the platform, which some users find unintuitive to use, or not advanced enough. Additionally, this tool might not be the most suitable for teams with complex projects, as some users have mentioned that it’s difficult to customize.
Consider if: Due to its pricing model, Teamdeck can be a good Resource Guru alternative for teams that are looking for resource planning features only, and have a need to manage multiple freelancers or temporary collaborators.
4. Mosaic – A Resource Guru Alternative for a Variety of Industries
Mosaic is a resource and project management platform designed for a variety of industries, including architecture, creative agencies, construction, software development, and IT.
- Workload forecasting and demand analysis
- Employee categorization for easier planning
- Project templates and task management
- Time tracking with built-in timers
Mosaic is a Resource Guru alternative that combines resource planning with real-time collaboration features, such as task management and time tracking. Users generally feel positive about Mosaic, though some reviewers mentioned that customer service can be somewhat slow to respond.
Consider if: You’re interested in a tool that provides a solid mix of collaboration tools and resource planning capabilities. However, agencies that are looking for true all-in-one platform support might want to consider some more robust options out there.
5. Saviom – A Resource Planning Option for Complex Projects
Saviom is a resource management and PSA software solution that aims to help agency management optimize finances and overall profitability.
- Color-coded utilization heatmaps
- Revenue and cost forecasting
- Support for bulk scheduling changes
- Customizable analytics dashboards
Saviom is certainly a powerful solution for resource planning and forecasting. However, since the pricing is license-based, it can be a costly option that is inaccessible to agencies with limited funds. Additionally, multiple reviewers have commented that the user interface is slightly dated and doesn’t feel as modern as comparable solutions.
Consider if: You’re ready to invest in a more robust forecasting option, and you’re confident your teams will take to the tool despite the user interface downsides.
6. Monday.com – A Comprehensive Solution for Essential Agency Support
Monday.com is a work management platform that combines project management and resource management to help businesses support various types of projects.
- Task management and prioritization
- Multiple project progress visualizations
- Resource allocation and scheduling
- Supported project portfolio management
Monday.com can be a good choice for collaborative project management combined with some resource planning capabilities. However, users frequently report feeling overwhelmed with the tool, and like they’re “left to your own devices to figure a lot of the features out yourself” (Source: Capterra).
Consider if: You’re looking for a tool with a wide variety of features, and you’re not intimidated by the prospect of a longer onboarding session to get a grasp on the essential functionalities of the tool. Additionally, something to be noted is that Monday.com does lack some advanced financial features, making it a somewhat sub-optimal choice.
7. Basecamp – A Simplified Tool for Team Collaboration
Trello is a visual collaboration tool that helps teams work together in a simple, efficient, and flexible way.
- Multiple views: Table, Calendar, Timeline, etc.
- Agile planning support
- Easy-to-use community templates
- App integrations with various tools
Basecamp can be a good alternative for agencies that are looking to lean more into project and task management. Users find the tool especially enjoyable for tracking project deadlines and simplifying communication but underline that it’s not a fully versatile option.
Consider if: Your biggest pain point is getting teams to collaborate each with other more efficiently, and you’re running a small agency with limited reporting and financial management needs. For more robust resource management, picking a different alternative is advised.
Takeaway: Finding the Best Resource Guru Alternative
In this article, we’ve explored what some of the best Resource Guru alternatives can do for your agency. Although there is no true one-size-fits-all solution that we can offer, there’s some parting advice you might want to consider.
While Resource Guru is a more specialized solution that does one functionality well, consider the benefits of using one agency management tool. You can get multiple benefits by centralizing most of your activities on one platform, from reduced IT overhead, to improved efficiency and better key agency insights.
If you’re interested in exploring what a comprehensive solution can do for your agency, consider booking a demo with Productive today.
Streamline Your Resource
Get an all-in-one agency platform that combines your resourcing, project planning, and budgeting.