Collaboration is an act of co-working to obtain a certain result or outcome. It can be anything from baking your favorite pie to a new product launch. As easy as it may sound, Collaboration has been not that easy for individuals, teams and businesses and it is nobody’s fault either. The ever-changing digital landscape, umpteen social apps, devices & platforms have spoiled us for choice. The wild digital freedom can inhibit collaboration if not used wisely.
Hence the need for a simplified and single collaboration platform where you can
- Get all your team members together (no matter how dispersed they are)
- Easily exchange and brainstorm ideas
- Real time review of progress
- Ensure everyone understands the same thing. Understanding True Project Requirements!
- Everyone does exactly what is required
The ability to collaborate is important. Teams want to be able to contact one another to highlight and discuss the shared work that’s taking place within your product. Enabling the ability to add people to projects will help with this collaboration, as well as showing which users are working in which spaces and allowing users to comment and suggest. Learn how your customers are using your product and establish what collaboration features will turn your product into a crucial part of a team’s shared work. So, let's see some of the best tools that are available to boost team collaboration:
Founded in 2008 by Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz and former Google and Facebook engineer Justin Rosenstein, Asana is a highly intuitive project management SaaS that helps teams track and assign tasks, visualize time lines and report on productivity.
Evidence of Asana’s effectiveness can be found in its explosive growth. In September 2018, Asana announced that it had reached a plateau of 50,000 paid users, in addition to an estimated 1 million plus users of the free plan. A recent valuation of $900 million brought the SaaS within striking distance of the mythical “unicorn” status.
Best of all, the tool makes it easy to visualize the progress being made on a diverse array of projects and individual tasks across the organization.
One of the challenges of having offices and remote teams across the globe is scheduling convenient times for virtual meetings and chats. Calendly eliminates the back-and-forth often associated with scheduling. With Calendly, each member of your team gets a dedicated URL for a calendar showing his or her availability and allowing other team members to request an appointment at a suitable time.
Team members can also share their availability with clients through Calendly, either through their URL or through embedding their calendar on a website. For Asana users, Zapier offers extensive integrations with Calendly, and Calendly also syncs with all of the popular calendar apps, eliminating both unnecessary data entry and the possibility of double-booking.
Atlassian’s Confluence offers much of the functionality of Asana (for project management) and Google Docs (collaboration on text documents), but it is most useful as a knowledge base. For example, Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), employee reference forms and client forms all live in Confluence.
Confluence also acts as an effective human resources portal. Employees can request time off, perform monthly self-evaluations and complete many other repeatable processes that an admin defines as being within the Confluence platform.
For digital entrepreneurs, user experience (UX) design is almost always of vital concern. But design is notoriously difficult to talk about, particularly if you have multiple stakeholders involved in giving feedback - and they’re not in the same room.
InVision is a SaaS app used by companies such as Amazon, Airbnb and Netflix to build interactive and responsive prototypes without writing a single line of code. InVision’s tools are designed to be intuitive even for users without a design background. Users can mark-up design drafts within the InVision app, or utilize its integrations with Slack and other messaging tools, to easily share feedback directly onto the design draft itself, making it much easier to associate comments with specific UX elements. As Aarron Walter, director of UX at MailChimp, says in InVision’s intro clip, when it comes to UX design, “InVision is a faster way to certainty.”
From its humble beginnings, Google Docs has evolved into a full-fledged word processor worthy of favorable comparison with Microsoft Word - long the industry standard for content creators. One of the primary strengths of Docs is just how much it facilitates collaboration. The father of Google Docs, Sam Schillace, identified collaboration as “the crown jewel of hard problems.” This is particularly true when multiple people need to work together on a document.
Traditionally, collaboration required sending a Word document back and forth via email to multiple recipients. Keeping track of which document was the most current, and combining comments and revisions from various contributors, could quickly turn into a torturous process.
Legacy tools such as SharePoint 2016, Google Docs are proven to simply this complex process for file sharing and document management. Recently Microsoft also launched its SharePoint 2019 which has much more features compared to SharePoint 2016. Learn more about SharePoint 2019 vs 2016 comparison to get an overview of which one is best for you.
Docs’ version history function eliminates the fear of saving changes. You can quickly and easily revert to any previous version of the document. Additionally, the “comment” function in GDocs makes it easy to communicate with colleagues from directly within the document. Docs also integrates with Slack, so you can receive a notification in your Slack work space any time a comment is made or resolved within the doc.
Sometimes there’s just no substitute for meeting face to face, even if your team is distributed around the globe. Zoom is a first-in-class videoconferencing SaaS app that makes it effortless to host meetings with your team, no matter where they’re located. It also makes in-person presentations location-independent, with its extensive webinar functionality.
Videoconferencing can be invaluable for reinforcing company culture. Putting faces to names and being able to do this on a weekly basis helps build relationships and encourage teamwork.
Microsoft Teams is one of the popular video conferencing tool among the Skype for business users as Microsoft will be soon ending support for it. The best part about it that people tend to love Microsoft Teams pricing and features.
Successful collaboration is an absolute necessity for any business as it grows. Thankfully, the tools above make this goal more attainable than ever. Put them to work for your business today. Which one of the tool did you liked the most? Please let us know in the comments section.