It’s quite an advent that competition today is rough. Businesses are looking for ways to bring a fresh touch of what they are offering to customers. While they are doing their best to serve their end users, businesses are also looking for ideas to get employees involved as much as possible in collaborating with their ideas.
It’s time now to move beyond emails. With the well-placed plethora of smart devices in the market, one cannot ignore the fact that there’s more to explore. Gone are the days of manual ideas sharing amongst employees in which most were not even acknowledged.
With the introduction of collaboration tools, employees are empowered with sharing their ideas, thoughts, plans etc. over these tools for all to look at.
What is Business Collaboration Tool?
Ideas generate into big plans! Today, the collaboration between employees brings fresh ideas that connect business with higher profit and management. Regardless of the industry, the connection one has with another brings unimaginable suggestions that could outgrow the business.
‘Collaboration prompts people to work together to achieve a defined set of business goals.’
To bring an enhancement and transparency in the collaboration of ideas, business has come up with various tools that now given an edge to sharing notions.
Need for Business Collaboration Tools
There had been more inclination towards collaboration tools among a variety of sectors these days. It not only brings together relevant people for discussion but also enhances the chance of project success. And since startups are growing throughout the different sectors at a fast pace, the need for easy-to-use and competitively priced collaboration tools for startups have gained huge demand.
The best part of having these platforms is that it facilitates open and transparent communication so that no one is deprived of communication whenever project changes or is updated. In fact, a business can easily detect the success of the collaboration tool based on the completion of the project with expected ROI.
Fact alert – ‘Employees who prefer working as being a part of a team can perform tasks for 64% longer than employees who work alone.’
Collaboration Software Market Worldwide 2015-2020
Benefits of Collaboration Tools:
1) Easy Project Tracking
Collaboration tools enable persons to track the project at any given time. It becomes easy for all the team members to visualize the evolution of a project from day one.
- The tracking is so detailed that all details like revised and latest changes on the document compared to the old document, reviewer colleague’s name on the document, and etc. had made it easier to manage a project.
- There are now ample amount of channels other than emails that empower users to share their work online. Such online collaboration tools eradicate the need of e-mail as the primary means of communication with team members.
- This automatically saves employees from unnecessary tasks like searching the inbox for a lost document, looking for a document that is in junk mailbox, incompatible mails etc.
2) Anywhere Collaboration
Earlier there was the need to sit together to discuss the prospects of the project. While today, all you need is the internet connection.
- By simply having an internet connection, team members have the feasibility to work from anywhere.
- The team can easily work in an organized way despite being completely dispersed.
- Employees from different states or countries can contribute to the same project, helping the organization to put together the best possible team for a project, irrespective of the location of the employees.
- Even while employees are away on a business trip or on personal leave, they still can share their ideas, thoughts through online collaboration tools. They can contribute equally as other employees on the desk.
3) Ease of Reporting
Almost all work projects are linked with some reporting associated with it, who ensures that all tasks are executed as per the designated deadlines.
- With business collaborative tools, one can simply track some of the activities assigned for certain projects.
- This allows working with a large team where it’s difficult to track each employee’s tasks. The tools facilitate the reporting associate to keep a check on the tasks and deadline of all members from anywhere in the world.
- Having an efficient business collaborative tool also quickly generate detailed reports of all the activities associated with a certain project.
4) Quick Actions
Gone are the days when there was the need to meet face to face for prompt decision making. With the support of a good business collaboration tool, there is no longer need for a face to face meeting to review a document or make a decision.
- With the help of internet connection, documents can be easily uploaded into the tool, and reviewers, project associates are instantly notified via email that documents have been uploaded.
- Reviewers or the related project associates can then review the document, make necessary changes and notify all team members that the document has been reviewed and is ready for use.
- This helps the organization to be quick on toes and be ready with instant solution whenever needed. It easy to keep a steady and organized workflow on a defined project with team members working closely.
5) All Documents at One Place
It’s easy to function when all the members have quick and instant access to all documents related to the project.
- Having a business collaboration tool equips team members to refer to one place for their documents need.
- Team members can easily access all necessary documents, irrespective of their location.
- On safety point of view, employees don’t need to copy documents onto a USB stick or other storage media in case of any remote work plan. They can just log into the tool to access all documents and file needed and work accordingly.
Top 5 Business Collaboration Tools
While the market is filled with numerous business collaboration tools, we bring to you top 5 tools that can transform the way you have been working till now. Collaborating ideas, thoughts have been a few vogues that not only gives an edge to employees to be creative but also boosts organizations growth simultaneously.
Already having millions of users on the tools, Slack indeed is the most opted collaboration tool. It drives business performance with its incredibly smart platform. The tools facilitate workflows and boost communication. It is available both on mobile and desktop devices.
- a) It allows sending direct messages to single or group of employees.
- b) The tool supports group video calling.
- c) It also permits members to drag, drop and share files with other members
- d) The tool is compatible with Google Drive, Dropbox, and Box.
Source: Finances Online
If the need is a project management tool, then Trello is the one! The tool is equipped with easy-to-use interface and features.
1) It lets your team organize their tasks and view their projects in one place
2) It’s easy to set up to-do lists and delegate tasks amongst colleagues
3) The tool members can share files, documents, videos instantly and easily access them from any device in the world.
4) In Trello, there’s an option to assign comments which is a quick way to give feedback to others.
5) It is integrated with apps like Evernote, GitHub, Google Drive and Slack making the task easier for team members.
Source: Finances Online
Since 2008, Asana has been an old hand collaboration tool and companies like Intel, Uber, Pinterest, and TED use it as their core method of communication.
1) It enables companies to track the work of employees and get the best possible results out of every employee.
2) It allows in creating to-do lists for ongoing projects, setting reminders for upcoming deadlines and sending requests to colleagues.
3) It has project templates which can be used to manage the projects.
4) It is integrated with platforms like Slack, Dropbox, Github.
Source: Finances Online
Skype is the most popular and widely used video conferencing calling programs. Every organization has established its communication grounds on Skype.
1) It allows the team to communicate with each other via their desktop, laptop or mobile device.
2) Users can exchange quick messages via Skype since it has the easiest interface.
3) There are loads of emoticons available so as to include in the communication making it more fun and vibrant.
4) It enables users to send files and share screen, screenshots.
Fact Alert: Skype already has 300 million monthly active users.
Wrike is an online project management tool. It is well known to speed up projects in both distributed and co-located teams. It is an awarded tool as the best project management software tool too.
1) The tool allows users to schedule, monitor, prioritize and discuss work and project progress–all in real time with few clicks.
2) It is laden with features like information management and business collaboration functionalities that improve business performance.
3) It also has top-of-the-line security features that assure only relevant personnel get to access critical project information.
Source: Finances Online
To conclude on the topic, the good news is that business collaboration doesn’t necessarily require a significant time or heavy financial investment. With the availability of the tools online, a business can try and test before paying for a final tool. The important thing is to go for the one that suits your requirement and fulfills the need to outgrow the business altogether.
Siya Carla is a professional writer, working with Finoit Technologies. She is a technology enthusiast, who has written articles and blogs on topics relevant to mobile app development and custom software development.