Teamwork and collaboration are issues that are becoming increasingly important within the modern workforce. However, a lot of people still fail to recognise the true value that collaborative applications can offer. The truth is, there’s a lot more to these systems than the ability to send your co-worker an emoji when they’re making coffee in the other room.
The chances are that you know how useful a collaborative app can be when it comes to global workforces and remote team members, but do you know how valuable they are in an office where everyone shares the same space?
Let’s look at just some of the benefits of this great technology.
1. Tracking Projects is Simpler
Collaboration tools often come with a collection of fantastic project tracking tools that make it easier to not only work with a group on a project but figure out how well that project is going too. In other words, you can follow the evolution of a task all the way from post-it-note form to its application in real life.
With team tools, you can track who made the most recent changes to a document, and tag colleagues who need to provide annotations on updates or approve the latest drafts. It’s never been easier to handle a team project without having to constantly walk around the office with new print-outs for people to scribble all over.
2. Team Members aren’t Locked to their Desk
You might start a team project in the same office, but that doesn’t mean that you have to stay there, shackled to your computer. Sometimes, the best innovation happens when members of a team are allowed to move freely, and collaboration tools mean that so long as your co-workers have an internet connection, they can stay in touch with you.
In other words, if your co-worker Chris needs to take a day off to look after his sickly child, you can still ask for his input on a new document, or request he makes some changes to a graphic that you want to get rolled out later that day. The office space becomes more flexible, and people become more productive – wherever they are.
3. Reporting Made Easy
Pretty much every kind of work project you can do comes with some kind of reporting process connected to it. Usually, it’s that report that’s the most stressful part of your job. Sometimes, it can be all-too-easy to lose track of the activities completed for a certain project – particularly when you’re working with a larger team.
On the other hand, when you’re using a good collaboration tool, you can start to generate more detailed reports in an efficient and effective manner, which include all of the different steps involved with any project. That means less stress for workers all around.
4. Things Get Done Faster
Remember before when I mentioned the benefits of not having to walk around with paper documents for people to approve? With a good collaboration tool, everything gets done faster, from approving a project to getting onto the next steps of your task. You no longer have to worry about getting a meeting scheduled just so that someone can review new documents.
When someone new needs to address the project, you simply need to move them into the collaboration tool and give them the right capabilities so that they can annotate your latest work, give feedback, and share their opinion.
5. Organisation Becomes Easier
Finally, through a team collaboration tool, all documents can be stored in a single location, which makes it easier for team members to access all the files that they might need – regardless of their location. At the same time, this also means that you don’t have to worry about employees saving documents on storage media and USB sticks if they need to work remotely.
Security is enhanced, and employees can work on different tasks wherever they like because updates to a document happen in real time. In other words, everything moves more smoothly – for everyone.
Rob is Founder & Publisher of UC Today, a leading news publication specialising in Unified Communications & Collaboration technologies.