If you need a place to unify your workflows, project assets, and team communications, you need workflow management software. Nowadays, there are dozens of tools to choose from, ranging from simple solutions to massive ones. Adobe Workfront is on the latter end. A sophisticated workflow management platform, Workfront can keep up with giant companies—it won’t even break a sweat dealing with thousands of moving parts. But is it right for you? Let’s explore the pros and cons of this powerful tool.
Adobe Workfront Compared to the Best Workflow Management Software
While it’s great for big businesses, Adobe Workfront isn’t very accessible to small and mid-size teams. Thus, it didn’t make our list of the best workflow management software, but these three Golden Eggs did. Check them out if you think a simpler workflow management solution is more your speed.
ProofHub offers project tracking, custom workflows, live team chats, and task management in an all-in-one workflow management tool. Test these features on ProofHub’s 14-day free trial.
Process Street drills down to the basics with its simple yet powerful project management interface. Try it today with a 14-day free trial, no credit card required.
Hive lets remote and hybrid teams access workflow management features tailored to their unique work situation. Give it a try on the Forever Free plan to see how you like it, then upgrade when you’re ready.
Adobe Workfront: The Good and the Bad
There’s plenty to love about this powerhouse of a workflow management tool, but it’s not for everyone. Here’s what we admire about Workfront—and where we think it could improve.
What Adobe Workfront Is Good At
If you’re a project manager who needs to organize, assign, and track hundreds of assignments, Adobe Workfront is an ideal tool. The software also comes with a helpful proofing system, solid reporting capabilities, high security, and a variety of integrations.
Managing hundreds of projects: When you need to manage over 100 projects across dozens and dozens of employees and stakeholders, Adobe Workfront saves the day. From mapping projects and assigning tasks to setting priorities and defining dependencies, Workfront helps you do it all at scale. Workfront also provides tools for budget tracking, cost estimation, and expense management.
The user reviews we studied praised these large-scale workflow management capabilities. They also complimented Adobe Workfront’s Gantt and calendar views and the ability to create custom project views. And each user gets a curated to-do list to work from, making organization a snap.
Proofing system: One of the main highlights of Workfront is its proofing feature. Designed to keep stakeholders and team members on the same page, the proofing system eliminates costly silos and bottlenecks. And it’s not limited to documents–you can proof over 150 types of files. This means audio, video, GIFs, images, PDFs, renderings, and Word docs can all be integrated into your approval workflow, just to name a few.
Adobe Workfront’s markup tools include comments, highlights, pixel measurements, and shapes. Every update, comment, and markup is tracked, and you can compare file versions side by side. Users appreciate how granular you can get with Adobe Workfront’s proofing tools.
Security: Adobe Workfront takes security seriously. It locks your business data down in a way that adheres to ISO 27000 standards and the AICPA’s Trust Services Principles. You can confidently meet any internal or contractual regulations, as well as adhere to GDPR and CCPA.
Data at rest is protected with AES 256-bit encryption, while TLS 1.2 protocols back data in transit to keep it safe en route. Adobe tests its security every year using third-party pen testing organizations. It also routinely checks its security measures against the OWASP Top 10 standard awareness document.
Reporting: Sharing reports with team members, managers, and stakeholders is easy with Adobe Workfront. You can use Workfront’s reporting feature to create a report on just about any dataset within your workspace. And, instead of manually delivering them to the right people at the right time, you can set up automations to take care of these tasks for you.
Integrations: Adobe Workfront offers native integrations that’ll cover many project managers’ favorite tools, including Google Workspace and Drive, Jira, Slack, Salesforce, Microsoft Outlook and Sharepoint, and Box. Users report that these integrations function well. Plus, Workfront continually makes improvements to streamline the user experience. And, of course, you can connect your own integrations using Workfront’s API.
What Adobe Workfront Is Lacking
Adobe Workfront struggles to provide a user-friendly interface, a concern shared time and again in the reviews we studied. And unlike competitors, Workfront lacks a reliable offline mode.
User-friendliness: Workflow management software should make organizing your team’s projects easier, not harder. But Adobe Workfront is so complex that one user said they could only use about 40% of the tools. To use the other 60%, they’d need to hire a Workfront expert.
Over and over, we read reviews citing Workfront’s daunting learning curve and frustrating UX. And, when we explored the tutorials and features ourselves, we were struck by the sheer amount of steps you must take to get anything done. This software isn’t for the faint of heart or the inexperienced.
Limited functionality for SMBs: Small and medium businesses may find Adobe Workfront overwhelming. And they probably won’t want—or need—to use many of the features that make Workfront great for enterprise-level project managers. As one reviewer put it, “With all that functionality, the tool becomes confusing to do simple project [management].”
Mobile apps: Adobe Workfront’s mobile apps need a little love. Or, maybe a lot. Users who have tried to work on the mobile apps report several issues. These include difficulty logging in, frequent crashes, poor mobile optimization, and limited functionality. Certainly, the software’s complexity makes a mobile version tough to pull off, but if you want to make on-the-fly adjustments from anywhere, Workfront may disappoint you.
Adobe Workfront Options and Pricing
Adobe Workfront offers three core pricing plans: Pro, Business, and Enterprise. However, none of these plans come with listed prices. Workfront really only uses these titles as a starting point to put together a package tailored to your team’s needs.
You can get even more out of Workfront with its three add-ons: Workfront Fusion, Workfront Goals, and Workfront Scenario Planner. Let’s delve into the plans’ pricing setup and what these add-ons bring to the table.
Buying an Adobe Workfront plan gives you a suite of advanced tools. They cover five key areas: work automation, workflow management, online proofing and approvals, Agile work management, and reporting dashboards.
The content manager for a large ad agency could use Adobe Workfront to create dozens of projects for various stakeholders. Each project would get its own tasks and subtasks, all assigned to someone on the team. As the workflow progresses, Workfront can facilitate an in-depth approval process. Everyone on the project—including the stakeholder—can play an active role.
Each of the three core plans adds a little something extra. You get almost everything on Adobe Workfront Pro, but the Business tier unlocks the full run of the software’s work management, portfolio planning, administration, storage features, and all integrations. The main feature benefit of the Enterprise plan is getting access to all of the platform’s security features and settings.
Workfront doesn’t publish its pricing, but some estimates we’ve found put the starting price point at $30 per month for each user.
Adobe Workfront Fusion
Workfront Fusion is an add-on that helps you integrate all your other tools into one platform and set automations across the entire hub. Essentially, it’s a way to make your communication, workflow, payroll, budget, and sales software work together as one.
Say you need to run a costly test on your IT system, for example. You can add the task to your Workfront workflow, and your finance software will automatically update your operating budget.
To find out how much it’ll cost to add Fusion to your Workfront plan, reach out to an Adobe sales rep.
Adobe Workfront Goals
This add-on helps managers share large-scale goals with the whole team. Instead of focusing only on the tasks and projects that make up a workday, Goals highlights how each day’s work contributes to overarching objectives.
This serves to better support Agile project teams and even weaves in some features of requirements management software into the Workfront platform.
A publishing company could use Workfront Goals to track its progress toward the publication of a textbook. From writers and researchers to graphic designers and marketers, everyone would be able to see exactly what they need to do to succeed.
Adobe doesn’t display the pricing for this add-on, so you’ll have to get in touch with a representative to see how much it costs.
Adobe Workfront Scenario Planner
Workflows aren’t always straightforward. If a content agency is waiting on a client to decide how many pages they want on their website, the team might feel stuck. How can they plan ahead without knowing which direction they’re going?
Adobe Workfront’s Scenario Planner solves this problem by giving the team a way to map out the direction of a project based on several scenarios. That way, you’ll be ready to hit the ground running when the decision is finally made, and a client wants the website completed yesterday.
As with all Adobe Workfront products, you’ll need to contact the sales team for pricing.
Adobe Workfront in Summary
Adobe Workfront is an advanced workflow management solution for enterprise teams. Project managers and other leaders can benefit from the impressive array of features Workfront offers. With top-notch security, an advanced proofing system, and powerful reporting, Workfront is great for teams with hundreds of projects and thousands of employees.
Smaller teams, on the other hand, would be better off with one of our Golden Eggs. ProofHub is an all-in-one project management and proofing tool for teams of all sizes. Process Street helps you manage workflows with the most sophisticated checklist system you’ll ever meet. And Hive is the workflow management software your remote team has been looking for.
Discover more about this category of software, our Golden Eggs, and even more useful alternatives to Adobe Workfront in our full post on the top workflow management software.