As teams become more and more remote, learning to incorporate online collaboration tools is becoming crucial. With so many business collaboration platforms available, choosing the right software for your business may help everyone work more efficiently. Most importantly, teams will be able to stay in sync, keep the communication flowing, and stay agile when changes occur.
Collaboration tools for business allow people who are working in different spaces (or just on different things) the opportunity to team up on projects together in real-time. They provide a way to give status updates, ask questions, share ideas, and more, without having to schedule meetings or sift through tons of emails.
Features to Look for While Choosing a Collaboration Software
Collaboration tools technology has exploded in the last few years, and especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, teams have relied on it to stay in touch and work together from afar. With so much collaboration software from which to choose, it can be confusing to figure out which ones will serve your team the best. To help you with your research, here are some key features to consider as you browse and test potential online collaboration tools.
Free trial and affordable pricing
Having the opportunity to test out collaboration tools before onboarding everyone may make it easier when choosing the right software for your business. Beyond the trial period, be sure you figure out if there is a free version of the software, and/or what the monthly fees are for the upgraded versions.
Ideally, you want to choose collaboration software that is intuitive and doesn’t have a huge learning curve. That will make it easier for everyone to adopt and begin using right away. When you evaluate different apps, think about whether your team will be able to jump right in after a brief training.
You want to make sure collaboration tools have a variety of options for collaboration. Looks for both group chat options (and the ability to create and manage different groups) and private messages. Then, see if users can share files, make video calls, and even use fun components like avatars and emojis.
Easy to sync across devices
The main question to ask is if there is a mobile app. That’s going to be a key feature if your workforce is bouncing from desktop to tablet to smartphone. Along those lines, confirm that the software will work with all their devices.
Scheduling features for project management
Some collaboration tools are nothing more than messaging apps, while others allow you to assign tasks, add timelines to projects, and set calendar meetings. Think about your needs and try to find online collaboration tools that match.
Most collaboration tools are in real-time, but you’ll want to confirm that people can have discussions and see the most recent versions of files so there is no confusion or overwriting issues. This is typically the case with cloud-based collaboration tools.
With private discussions, sensitive data and project information being shared, you’ll want some assurance that the information is safe, secure, and hacker-proof.
Ability to scale
As your team grows and your needs change, does a particular collaboration software offer versions that can accommodate you? For example, some plans may have a maximum number of users, and you might have to move to a higher-priced plan.
When glitches happen or if you have questions about how to maximize the collaboration tools technology, you want to know that reaching a support person is only a chatbox, email or phone call away and, that they will be responsive and helpful. Read reviews to hear what customers are saying.
The Power of Collaboration
Businesses need to assess their needs before picking the right solution. Whether your team can benefit from software that promotes better team communication, collaborative content creation, the workflow of projects, sharing ideas, or all of the above, there is a collaboration tool for you.
First, figure out where the gaps in your existing workflow exist by having conversations with your colleagues about their pain points. This will help you figure out the key features that your collaboration solution should have. From there, try out a couple of different online collaboration tools to see which one is best designed to help your team thrive.
Once you narrow down your options, work with the collaboration software providers to go over which plan level is best for your current needs, and what options are available should you need to scale up in the future.
After you've chosen the perfect collaboration tool, schedule a training session to introduce your team to how it works and go over FAQs.
By leveraging the right collaboration tools, companies may achieve increased productivity, strong engagement and communication between team members, and fewer mix-ups and project delays.
This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or an opinion on any issue. It should not be regarded as comprehensive or a substitute for professional advice.