- 1. Connecteam — Best for managing team tasks and employee trajectories
- 2. Trakstar — Best for linking SMART goals with employee performance
- 3. PerformYard — Best combined performance and goal management software with continuous feedback features
- 4. Leapsome — Best for linking goals & OKRs with performance management and employee development
- 5. Lattice — Best goal-tracking software for improving strategic alignment across all levels
- 6. Profit.co — Best all-in-one software for managing goals, OKRs, KPIs, and tasks
- 7. ClearCompany — Best talent management platform with integrated goal-management features
- 8. OKR Board for Jira by Oboard — Best for adding OKR goals to your Jira environment
- 9. Quantive Results — Best for its collaborative strategic planning tools
- 10. Asana — Well-known productivity tool suitable for tracking team or company goals, including multiple visual views
Goal setting software has a lot to offer. It helps you organize your objectives, prioritize your key tasks, and boost your productivity. It also improves team transparency and brings co-workers together to achieve shared goals. As well, goal setting software can improve your organization's strategic alignment at all levels.
To save you hours of internet sleuthing, here's my list of the 10 best goal setting software on the market today. As someone who loves to stay organized, this was an extra rewarding assignment to dig into!
Connecteam is a workforce management software provider. It has communication, operations, and HR platforms that can be used separately or as a complete solution. The HR platform offers tools for managing individual employee performance and goals, while the operations solution helps teams achieve success and hit their targets.
Why I picked Connecteam: The HR module allows you to build unique learning experiences for employees, helping them to grow in their roles. You can create evaluation quizzes and assessments, providing on-the-job training. It also has a unique employee timeline feature that can be used to map out each employee's growth path with your business. This helps employees visualize a future with your company and understand what goals and milestones they need to achieve to progress.
As for the operational software, its task management tool helps keep teams focused and on track. You can assign tasks to specific team members, and add checklists or forms to facilitate their work. This helps ensure targets are hit and nothing is missed.
Integrations include Google Calendar, Gusto, QuickBooks Payroll, and others.
Trakstar is an HR software that covers performance management, employee learning, hiring and onboarding, and workforce analytics. The performance management module of the software can be used to set and track employee goals, conduct performance reviews, and collect 360-degree feedback. The software also measures employee engagement on an ongoing basis with surveys.
Why I picked Trakstar: Employees can set SMART goals with their manager in the software, adhering to the goal-setting framework that keeps goals Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound. Managers can then track employee goal progression by scheduling regular check-ins and building improvement plans as needed with the software. Automated reporting gives you visualized data on how team performance evolves over time.
Key features include check-ins, note-taking, self-evaluations, peer feedback, employee surveys, real-time reporting, 360 feedback, SMART goal setting and tracking, customized development plans, and skills appraisals.
Integrations include ADP Workforce Now, Azure, BambooHR, Checkr, Google Workspace, Namely, Office365, Okta, Slack, Zoom, and other workplace tools.
PerformYard’s performance management software integrates goal tracking with performance reviews, check-ins, and continuous feedback to create a holistic employee development experience.
Why I picked PerformYard: Their cascadable goal feature makes it possible to link goals from top-level company objectives and OKRs down to individual employee or shared team goals, broken down into more manageable parts. To ensure all elements of employee progression are transparent, their goal analytics dashboard produces clean charts and stats that are available to management and executives, as well as the individual employees themselves.
Their system is fully customizable, giving you the flexibility to provide feedback to your employees or check in on their goals whenever it works for you, including daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annually. You can also customize the timing of your performance review cycle too, as well as the forms and question templates that work best for your organization.
PerformYard also helps managers celebrate goal achievements either privately or publicly so all team members can witness employee progression firsthand. On top of all that, co-workers can also provide feedback to other colleagues directly too through their 360-degree feedback feature.
Integrations are available with many commonly used software systems, including, ADP, BambooHR, Gusto, Microsoft Teams, Paycom, Paylocity, Rippling, Slack, UKG Pro, and Workday.
Leapsome is a people enablement platform with a focus on performance management, goals & OKRs, employee development, and employee engagement.
Why I picked Leapsome: Their system helps companies create a culture of alignment, accountability and transparency across all levels of the organization through a continuous cycle of goal setting, tracking and reporting at the company, team and individual levels.
To ensure goals are always top-of-mind for users, Leapsome integrates their goal management features across their other modules, including their 1:1 check-in tools and continuous feedback loops. You can use Leapsome to create 1:1 meeting agendas with your goal status embedded at the top—a helpful way to ensure progress is touched upon during each meeting.
To reduce your administrative set up time, Leapsome also supports recurring goal cycles with fixed timelines that can be easily tweaked on a quarterly or annual basis. Their goal tree feature also adds an interesting visual element to the goal-tracking process, creating a visible link between individual or team goals that shows how they’ll contribute to the company’s overall success.
Integrations are available with many popular productivity tools, including Active Directory, GSuite, Jira, Microsoft Teams, Okta, OneLogin, and Slack, as well as with popular human resource information systems (HRIS) like ADP, BambooHR, HiBob, PayFit, Personio, Rippling, and Workday.
Lattice’s platform combines performance management software with goals & OKRs, and employee development features. It was designed to help people become high performers and achieve their personal goals.
Why I picked Lattice: Their software helps organizations achieve strategic alignment across all levels of staff through transparent goals that are linked to top-level business objectives. It also helps to increase employee engagement by integrating objectives into continuous processes such as 1:1’s, status updates, and performance reviews.
Key features in Lattice’s software include goal trees that break big-picture goals down into smaller components, and automated reminders that ask employees to update their goal progress periodically, as you configure it. Data is updated in real-time, giving managers and leaders a birds-eye-view of how teams are performing, including analytics and visualization tools. Their system also includes modern performance management features such as 360-degree feedback, performance review comment sentiment analysis, and custom question templates.
Integrations are available with common HRIS and HCM systems including ADP, BambooHR, Namely, Rippling, Personio, Workday, and Zenefits, as well as popular systems such as Gmail, Microsoft Outlook, Microsoft Teams, Salesforce, and Slack, among others.
Profit.co offers dedicated OKR software with additional features for task management, performance management and employee engagement.
Why I picked Profit.co: Their software can track any type of goal using 7 different types of key results, and comes with 400+ pre-built KPIs (key performance indicators) that you can customize to start tracking your corporate goals easily and quickly. Their OKR template (shown above) is also easy-to-use and walks you through the process of setting an OKR in less than 5 minutes.
Other key features included in Profit.co’s platform are flexible task tracking tools that let you prioritize and set deadlines, with the ability to break major tasks up into minor sub-tasks, plus a kanban style view for tracking progress. You can also set up links between tasks and key results, so your progress dashboards update automatically as items are completed.
As well, with Profit.co, OKRs are also linked to employee performance, giving a full picture of an individual’s achievements during their performance review. This helps to provide an unbiased picture of an individual’s performance, while aligning their employee development goals with corporate objectives.
Integrations are available with 40+ popular software applications including Chrome, Gmail, Google Calendar, HubSpot, Jira, Microsoft Teams, Microsoft Outlook, Salesforce, Slack, Snowflake, Wrike, Zapier, Zendesk, and many others.
ClearCompany is a talent management platform that organizations can use to set individual and team-wide goals and measure progress. It combines features such as reporting, analytics, and real-time feedback to create a comprehensive suite of tools for teams to use.
Why I picked ClearCompany: Their software makes it easy for users to stay organized by allowing them to set due dates for tasks and assign those tasks to specific individuals or groups. This helps ensure everyone is aware of what needs to be done and when, which can drastically reduce time wasted due to confusion or miscommunication. ClearCompany also offers additional support such as templates and best practices that help make goal creation easier.
The software includes powerful analytic tools that allow you to gain valuable insights into your team's performance as a whole, as well as that of individual team members. ClearCompany offers a range of pre-built reports that are generated from real-time data covering all aspects of a team’s operations, including employee engagement surveys and performance reviews. Admin users can also create custom reports based on specific metrics or KPIs that are relevant to their business.
Their feedback-gathering feature allows users to solicit feedback from team members to gain insight into how well things are going internally and externally. This helps organizations understand what's working well or needs improvement, and provides clarity on how to move forward with projects or initiatives to achieve desired results. Feedback gathered can include quantitative metrics and qualitative opinions from stakeholders across all levels of an organization.
Their team alignment feature helps teams stay connected and motivated through frequent communication. This includes integrated applications such as Slack, Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and other popular communication tools. Team members can share documents, access reports remotely, and send messages directly from within the app.
Integrations are available with 100+ popular HR software solutions, including Absorb LMS, eSkill, Google Calendar, GrowthPlay, HR Avatar, Microsoft Office 365, Microsoft Outlook, Microsoft Teams, Predictive Index, Skill Check, Slack, and many others.
OKR Board for Jira by Oboard is a goal-setting software that integrates directly with your Jira environment.
Why I picked OKR Board for Jira: You can use the platform to establish your Objectives and Key Results (OKRs), and then connect them with your epics, issues, and projects right in Jira. It's a great way to keep your projects and initiatives aligned with your broader goals, and keep goals top of mind in project planning through execution.
The OKR builder offers a hierarchy that's both flexible and customizable. You can set up your goals in whatever way makes the most sense for your business or team, and create multiple levels of cascading goals. You can also group OKRs together as they relate to specific initiatives, departments, timelines, or teams. The software has powerful reporting and analytics capabilities as well, so you can track your progress and identify areas for improvement.
Other features included in the platform are roadmaps, custom weights and levels, and private workspaces.
The native integrations available include Jira, Confluence, and Salesforce, and the REST API allows you to build integrations with other tools and systems if needed.
Quantive Results is a strategy execution platform designed to help businesses align their data and personnel around a common mission and clear goals.
Why I picked Quantive Results: This software offers a range of features that support your strategy planning, cross-departmental alignment, and goal setting. There's a focus on collaboration in strategic planning, with tools like whiteboards and retrospective templates to help your leadership team work together towards a plan.
When it comes to goal setting specifically, both OKR and KPI tools are included in the platform. You can set cascading goals, assign KPIs to specific teams or employees, and link related goals to one another. The software also has AI tools that help you set your KPIs and suggest relationships between OKRs.
Key features include pre-built OKR templates, multi-level goal setting, multiple key result types, tags, OKR and task alignment, automated notifications, advanced access permissions, and reporting and analytics tools.
Integrations include Slack, Microsoft Teams, Asana, Miro, Jira, SurveySparrow, BambooHR, Workable, Humaans, and Rally, among others. You can also access additional integrations with a paid Zapier account.
Asana is a popular productivity tool that’s often used for project management and team alignment in terms of task tracking and company-wide goals. Their software includes several different views to organize task and goal-based information, including kanban boards, gantt charts, a shared calendar view and a list view.
Asana’s goal tracking system allows teams to create top-level company goals, with contributing sub-tasks that feed into the larger objective. You can assign individual team members to specific sub-tasks, and visualize their progress using their dynamic task-tracking progress bars. This helps to keep team members on track, and provides a visual representation of each individual component of a company-wide goal, helping to flag any issues early if one sub-task is falling short. Asana can also be used to set objectives and key results (OKRs) to align teams around measurable goals with easy-to-digest visualization components.
Asana integrates with over 280 apps and counting, including Azure Active Directory, Chrome, DropBox, GitLab, Google Workspace, Loom, Microsoft Teams, Microsoft Office 365, Microsoft Outlook, Okta, Slack, Trello, Zapier, Zoho Desk, and many others.
Pricing for Asana starts at $10.99/user/month. You can also request a 30-day free trial through their website. They also have a free forever plan for individuals or small teams too.
Need Expert Help Selecting The Right Goal Management Software?
We’ve joined up with Crozdesk.com to give all our readers (yes, you!) access to Crozdesk’s software advisors. Just use the form below to share your needs, and they will contact you at no cost or commitment. You will then be matched and connected to a shortlist of vendors that best fit your company, and you can access exclusive software discounts!
Best for managing team tasks and employee trajectories
14-day free trial + free plan available
|From $29/month for 30 users (paid annually)||Visit Website|
Best for linking SMART goals with employee performance
Free demo available
|Pricing upon request||Visit Website|
Best combined performance and goal management software with continuous feedback features
Free demo available
|From $5-$10/user/month||Visit Website|
Best for linking goals & OKRs with performance management and employee development
14-day free trial
|From $8/user/month||Visit Website|
Best goal-tracking software for improving strategic alignment across all levels
Free demo available
|From $11/employee/month||Visit Website|
Best all-in-one software for managing goals, OKRs, KPIs, and tasks
30-day free trial + free plan available
|From $7/user/month||Visit Website|
Best talent management platform with integrated goal-management features
Free demo available
|Pricing upon request||Visit Website|
OKR Board for Jira by Oboard
Best for adding OKR goals to your Jira environment
Free demo available
|Pricing upon request||Visit Website|
Best for its collaborative strategic planning tools
Free plan + 14-day free trial available
|From $18/user/month||Visit Website|
Well-known productivity tool suitable for tracking team or company goals, including multiple visual views
Free plan available
|From $10.99/user/month||Visit Website|
Employee development platform well-suited for team member goal alignment and employee engagement.
- Knovos Cascade
Strategic project management software with tracking for goals, KPIs and OKRs.
Flexible and easy-to-use goal setting software with tools to support multi-level goals, habit tracking, and progress visualization
Modern OKR software with a useful Objective Explorer and a two-way Slack integration
Dynamic goal visualization tool, well-suited for large team goals and industries with tight security restrictions
Customizable workflow visualization tool with pre-built templates and an embedded goal widget
Popular productivity platform for goal setting, with linked tasks and targets and a weekly scorecard feature
- Kallidus Perform
Best goal setting software for centralizing employee performance management
Best goal setting OKR software for enterprises
Best for its goal blending for collective commitment
Selection Criteria For Goal-Setting Software
Wondering how I selected the best goal-setting software for this list? I'm happy to explain my process. To start off, I compiled a long list of goal management software systems with positive user ratings. Then, I embarked on a meticulous process of comparing each system to the next one using the different selection criteria below.
Here’s a summary of the main evaluation criteria I used to create this list:
As I set about reviewing each system in this list, these are the key features I paid attention to the most:
- Multi-level goals: Large goals should be broken down into smaller sub-components to help teams focus on the individual steps required to achieve their big picture objectives.
- Progress bars and aggregated scores: With big goals consisting of many smaller steps, progress bars and overall goal completion scores should draw from multiple sources to show how smaller tasks are feeding into the top-level objective.
- S.M.A.R.T. goal creation and tracking: Goals should be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-Bound. This helps to make goals more concrete, with clear targets to aim for that also function as goal posts to review progress against in the future.
- Team goals with multiple collaborators: Team goals help business units improve transparency, accountability and productivity, with multiple employees responsible for achieving shared team goals.
- Visualization formats: There are many different ways to visualize goals and tasks, including progress bars, goal trees, cascading OKRs, kanban boards, goal maps, gantt charts, and calendar or timeline views, depending on your personal preference.
- Links to performance reviews: Many goal setting systems are part of larger performance management systems, since goals add more focus to long-term employee development plans. For goal setting systems that are standalone, integrations with other software, such as human resources information systems (HRIS), are an important back-up option.
Other Assessment Criteria
- User Interface (UI): I selected systems with clean, colourful and organized interfaces that make updating goal progress enjoyable and engaging.
- Usability: I prefer software that organizes goal and task-based data intuitively, with clear guidelines on how you can link main goals with sub-tasks, or create other task-based relationships.
- Software Integrations: To improve productivity, real-time data tracking, and team visibility, integrations with other systems are important, including sales data systems, or team communication platforms like Slack.
- Value for Price: The goal-setting systems I selected for this list all include transparent pricing so you can forecast your monthly or annual fees before requesting a demo or free trial.
What’s The Difference Between Goals, OKRs, And KPIs?
Like many people, you may be wondering, just what is the difference between goals, OKRs and KPIs?
Goals are an expression of a person’s ambition or a desired result they hope to achieve. For example: My goal for today is to respond to all my unread emails from last week. It’s clear what the goal is and what the end result will be, but there is no numerical method to track it. It will simply be “in process” until it’s “complete.”
OKRs (objectives and key results) can be viewed in two ways:
The OKR framework is a goal management system that large companies like Google and Intel use to drive productivity in their teams. It’s broken down into two main components:
- Objectives are the description of what you, your team, or your company want to accomplish. They are not inherently numeric, but are more like strategic goals. For example: Our objective for Q1 is to source more diverse candidates.
- The objective is then paired up with a key result, which is a numerical measure of progress for your objective. Your key result (or results, since you can have more than one) will tell you how close you are to achieving your objective. For example: Key Result 1: Implement candidate sourcing from 5 new job portals by the end of Q1. Key Result 2: Aim to schedule 20% of interviews with self-identified diverse candidates by the end of Q1.
Most often, when workplace colleagues refer to “an OKR” they are not referring to the OKR framework itself—rather they’re referring to the combined objective + key result as an individual entity.
For more in depth information on this small but important distinction, take a look at Perdoo’s Goals vs. OKRs: The Small but Vital Difference.
Still wondering how KPIs fit in? Project management software giant Wrike asserts that the difference rests in the intention behind the goal.
KPIs (key performance indicators) are usually numerical metrics that represent the expected output of a process that’s already in place. In contrast, OKRs are often more ambitious and aggressive and sometimes referred to as “stretch” or “moonshot” goals.
For example, your KPI for the above scenario might be: A 10% increase in the number of diverse candidates screened during Q1. This is a more simplified number than the OKR scenario presented above, with no sub-results feeding into it.
No matter which type of metrics your organization decides to track, tracking something will still improve productivity and increase your team’s focus on the bigger picture more than tracking nothing at all.
With visions of productivity tools dancing in your head, now’s the time to plan your next steps!
Since goal setting and OKR tracking are so closely related, I recommend taking a peek at our list of the best OKR software too.
Beyond just software recommendations, we have some other great articles that explain HOW you can bring your goal management practices to the next level:
- Take a look at Liz Lockhart’s article Putting Organizations on the Path to Success Using the Cascading Goals Method to learn more about the cascading goals method and download a free template.
- Our very own Tim Reitsma also offers a crash course in How to Write SMART Goals (including examples), since we are all about practicing what we preach!
- To gain deeper insights into the OKR landscape, listen to our podcast with Nolan Hout, VP of Marketing at Unlock: OKR, where he discusses The Real Intent of OKRs. (Spoiler alert - it’s all about purpose!)
- Lastly, it only takes a moment to subscribe to our People Managing People newsletter. By joining us for our weekly update, you’ll gain access to our latest articles covering a whole range of useful HR-related topics, podcasts and tools.