Whether in a big or a small company, apart from skilful employees and efficient management, there’s one crucial element that you need to take care of to achieve good results, namely collaboration. Creating conditions in which team members can collaborate in an effective way works wonders for their productivity and job satisfaction. That’s why an efficient collaboration tool is an absolute must in business environment nowadays. What problems do they help resolve exactly?
In this day and age, it’s often the case that employees can benefit from flexible working hours or work remotely from places which are sometimes located on the other side of the globe. That’s why it’s very difficult to gather a team in one place to discuss project progress or potential issues. A collaboration tool allows for efficient real-time collaboration and facilitates the workflow of team members even if their work times don’t overlap. A well-organised kanban board shows the progress of projects and a communication feature allows for quick and easy messaging.
Another thing is that collaboration tools can, to a great extent, replace meetings and therefore save a lot of time. First of all, when everyone in a team well aware of what is going on in a given project, the need for meetings is significantly lower. Another thing is that less important meetings can often be replaced by real-time chat conversations. It’s a much quicker and often equally effective way of running meetings. Of course, it’s not possible to resign from meetings altogether, but it might be a good idea to replace at least some of them.
Collaboration tools are also a perfect point of reference for all team members. Having all tasks of a given project in one place helps everyone see the progress as well as their own contribution. At the same time, the whole team can see the big picture of the project. They can stay on top of their own tasks and verify the progress of tasks their colleagues are working on to see the project progress.
It’s hard to deny that collaboration tools are important, but now you might be wondering how to choose one that is best suited to the needs of a particular company or team. There are a few factors you should take into account.
The wide choice of available collaboration tools can also be a bit overwhelming. That’s why you need to choose the elements that are particularly important and then try out the tools that offer them. What should you pay attention to?
Before you decide on a paid solution, it’s well worth trying it out first. That’s why a free trial period is a big plus. It gives you the possibility to see if the tool has the features you’re looking for and if so, whether they meet your expectations. Once you decide to pay, at least you’ll be aware of the benefits the app can bring and if some features are missing, you’ll be able to figure out if you really need them or not.
Any tool you use to facilitate your work should be easy to use and intuitive. Otherwise, instead of making your work easier, it will make it more difficult. Since a collaboration tool is used by a whole team or company, it should also be easy to implement. You don’t want to waste your or anybody else’s time on the onboarding process and you surely don’t want to interrupt work with a new tool.
Make sure the tool you choose offers a mobile version of the app. Why so? Many of the team members who will use it will certainly appreciate the comfort a mobile app gives. Especially if their work involves a lot of meetings or business travels. A mobile app helps have everything in check even if you don’t have your laptop with you all the time. You can communicate wherever you are and check task progress any time you want.
The tool you choose must be a safe solution so it’s essential that the data you enter and store there is secure. You can’t compromise the safety of your employees and clients’ data. It’s a big advantage if the app you choose offers different access levels and allows for inviting guests with limited access to data, so take it into account when deciding on a collaboration tool.
In your work, you most probably use more apps than just the one for collaboration, such as a mailbox, a shared drive or a CRM system. A perfect collaboration tool should offer integrations with other tools you use to automate your work a bit more and further facilitate it. You might want to integrate your app with a time-tracking tool, Gmail or Google Drive, so make sure the tool you choose allows it.
Efficient collaboration is not only about seamless communication, but also about effective task management. That’s why, a good collaboration tool should be a two-in-one solution, offering a task management and a communication feature. Having everything in one place instead of jumping from one app to another will save a lot of your time and help you stay productive.
Try out HeySpace, a collaboration tool which offers all of the above and much more. Try it out for free and see how it can facilitate your work