SharePoint vs. Free Project Management Template vs. BrightWork

September 28, 2018 by

A question we often get asked is what’s the difference between vanilla SharePoint, the Free Project Management Template, and the full BrightWork solution? Which one is the right fit for me?

To make things a bit easier, we’ve prepared a simple table to compare SharePoint, our Free Project Management Template, and BrightWork to help decide which direction you should take with managing projects on SharePoint.


Comparison Chart


FeatureSharePointFree TemplateBrightWork
Document Management
SharePoint Workflows
SharePoint configuration options
Mobile Access
Microsoft Office Integration
SharePoint Custom Style Sheets
SharePoint Designer
Access to all Standard BrightWork Templates
Portfolio Reporting
Project Reporting
My Work Reports
Personal Reports
Kanban Boards
Task Scheduling
Basic Gantt Lists
Gantt Reports
Report Sharing
Report Configuration
Automated Project Metrics
Automated KPIs
Manual Metrics
Project Request Management
Resource Management
Resource Allocation
Manual KPIs
Manual Status Reports
Automated Status Reports
Basic Microsoft Project to SharePoint Syncing
Enhanced Microsoft Project to SharePoint Syncing
Enhanced SharePoint Lists
Site Collection Hierarchy Support
Better SharePoint Navigation
Template Management Area
Template Configurations
Template Design Sync
Nintex forms support
Nintex workflow support
Copying and Synching Workflows


Vanilla SharePoint


Vanilla SharePoint is great if you want to introduce the idea of team collaboration to your organization, but may not be too sure on how people will react to a new process.

You’ll need to configure your SharePoint site with the right lists and web parts for your project. This takes time, requiring both SharePoint and project management experience.

Before you start to configure SharePoint for project management, you should really take a look at our Free Template!

SharePoint Project Management Template

The free project management template from BrightWork is a fantastic starting point for managing a single project in SharePoint.

The pre-configured project site makes it easy to increase collaboration without the need to create a SharePoint template.

Key features of the free template include:

  • Getting Started Tiles
  • Project Homepage with dashboards
  • Work reports
  • Tasks List
  • Issues List
  • Project Reports
  • Document repository.



BrightWork Project and Portfolio Management

If you want to report across multiple projects, understand how all those projects are doing, or implement effective project request management, you should consider the BrightWork solution for SharePoint On-Premises.


BrightWork includes a range of best-practice templates and advanced cross-project reporting to help organizations get control over projects and introduce a structured approach at a pace that suits them.

Key BrightWork capabilities include:

  • Pre-configured, flexible templates for managing projects and portfolios.
  • Project Request Management.
  • SharePoint Kanban Boards
  • Metric tiles and dashboards
  • Resource Management
  • Resource Allocation
  • Report automation
  • Template Design Sync.


BrightWork guarantees greater simplicity for project managers, better visibility for senior executives, and the ability to deliver better and more consistent organizational project management.

After just weeks (not months) of using BrightWork, our customers are delivering better projects and are on a path to evolving their project management practices to their desired level of maturity.



If you are still a little unsure as to which best suits your requirements, I would advise to think about your requirements and ask the following questions:

  • Do you want visibility into your projects?
  • Do you want oversight and control over the new project pipeline?
  • Would you like some automation to ease the pressure of creating and sending reports?
  • Would you like to increase collaboration with your project teams?
  • Do you want to manage all project and non-project work in a single application?
  • Are you looking for real-time dashboards with visuals to let you know how your projects and portfolio of projects are performing?


If you answered “Yes” to any of the above, then BrightWork is the perfect solution for you. Watch our 20-minute video tour for a closer look at BrightWork in action!


Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in November 2015 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.


Image credit 

Micheál Clesham

Micheál is a content creator for the BrightWork marketing team. He is interested in written and visual storytelling with a view to making project management easier.

Outside of work, Micheál likes to find new stories through podcasts, movies, sport and travel.
Micheál Clesham

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