Flexible and remote work are both on the rise, and as a result it's easy to see why there's so much business demand for collaboration solutions, such as web and video conferencing and online team workspaces. The new virtual team needs intuitive, integrated and centralized ways to communicate quickly, share documents and manage their various projects.
However, collaboration software isn't just for virtual teams. In fact, coworkers literally sitting across from one another can still reap all the benefits of modern collaboration. And they might need these tools more than you think.
Providing Better Internal and External Collaboration
As a manager, one of your biggest concerns is improving the efficiency of your team, helping them work faster and more effectively to the benefit of the business at large. The flow of information at work continues to increase, however, which means navigating a vast sea of deadlines, documents, revisions and approvals with both internal and external stakeholders.
Collaboration software like a team workspace helps to centralize these files and processes in a much more effective and visible way than old stand-bys like email. Instead of wrestling with version control and endless back-and-forth, all of your files and discussions can live in a single virtual location and remain there for easy reference.
It's also important to remember that just because your team is in-house doesn't mean all of the stakeholders on its projects are. Being able to invite external participants, such as vendors or clients, into your workspace while retaining full control over privacy and permissions helps to streamline communication and approvals considerably.
Gaining a Competitive Advantage
The speed and effectiveness of your organization's collaboration is becoming less of a nice-to-have and more of a vital component for competitive success. Your competition is likely having a lot of the same discussions that you are. Who's going to have those discussions more effectively and bring new ideas and strategies to market more quickly?
Whether working with dispersed groups or in-house teams, collaboration software accelerates teamwork in a variety of ways to give your group that competitive advantage. Turn recurring projects into automated workflows with visibility across the entire team and built-in reminders to avoid chasing down various parts of a project. Review and optimize your team's effectiveness with reporting and real-time overviews into each individual project's progress.
And with everything synced to the cloud, you never have to worry about the entire team having the most recent version of a file or that last critical piece of team feedback regardless of where they are or what device they're using.
Because all of these functions and more—file sharing, messaging, scheduling meetings, project management—exist in one place, you no longer need to switch applications to locate different assets and updates for the same project. Plus, it’s all easy to set up and access from anywhere to connect and collaborate on the fly.
For more trends shaping modern collaboration, download our free eBook “The Future of Business Collaboration: 2015 Edition.”