Most organizations have realized the need for an Team Collaboration Software or Intranet Software. Selecting one requires extensive brainstorming and decision making to choose the best software that fits all your organizations’ unique requirements. An Online Team Collaboration Software that will streamline processes, enhance employee communication and collaboration. A combination of all the many tools used by departments and employees all in one platform.
Understanding how Online team collaboration tools in the digital workplace are starting to make a bigger impact and how employees work in an organization. Many Product companies began creating similar solutions that team collaboration portal provides. There is only a handful collaboration software that can give you a great deal.
Before Choosing an Online team Collaboration Tool Understand Your Company’s requirement.
Online Collaboration tools increase employee productivity, accelerate processes and streamline workflow. You need to gauge who can benefit from collaborating on tasks, projects, daily activities the most, is it specific to a department or the entire company?
Start with understanding the type of content that is shared on this online collaboration platform, how many resources will work on it? What kind of content (video, audio, text) will be shared on it?
Meet with the various department stake owners, understand the current communication gaps and problems. Looks at the current crop of application and software’s used and if they can be integrated into the collaboration tool.
Collaboration software completely Integrates with your organization.
One of the main issues in organizations post-purchase of a product Is the integration and deployment of the software throughout the organization. It is imperative when introducing a new software to the organization for it to work well with the existing apps and software’s used by employees, this will help increase the adoption of the new team collaboration software.
If your company uses Microsoft suite (Word, Excel PowerPoint, etc.) or Google services like Analytics, Apps & Drive. You should be able to integrate all these apps into your Online Team Collaboration software. You should also be able to integrate with Social Media Platforms; Facebook or Twitter. CRM Integration for Salesforce, Siebel, etc. Online meetings in your projects, groups, and events; GoToMeeting, Join.Me.
Impactful Onboarding and Training.
Closely relate to the above Points? Employees need to be trained thoroughly on software. An online team collaboration tool, as it will require them to spend considerable time on it. Finding, setting and working with different features on the platform has to be explained and taught in detail.
To ensure that a complete adoption of the new software is achieved. The Collaboration software should have enough documentation, regarding video tutorials, in-depth quick start guides with use-cases, help articles, resources/customer service that is available 24/7.
Security for every size!
The Online Collaboration portal should let you connect to your teams and projects wherever you are, and connect securely. It should have the ability to enable/disable mobile access per platform, disable access or wipe stored content, and store complete mobile access logs.
Some of the other Security features to look out for:
- Disable and wipe-out data from lost mobile devices.
- Have a two level authentication defense.
- Special Security protocol and formats for passwords.
- The ability to allow or disallow the web, desktop or mobile from connecting with the network.
If you are an enterprise, the collaboration portal should have unique security features to cater to your needs. The ability to own the security of the team collaboration software behind your firewall and in your network. Private cloud customers must have VPN-only access. Capacity to have completely encrypted database content. Control user authentication through Active Directory and the option to Log suspicious events. Like attempted access by employees to view unauthorized content etc.
Collaboration Software COST!
In any organization from small to big, costs are always a decisive factor especially if you have to pay per-user-per-month. Pricing for collaboration software’s can be anywhere from $5 to $25. You might also come across some free option (which are not the best as you do not have the full access to all the features).
Some Vendors tend to do some smart packaging of features and have different plans, ranging from 2-4 plans covering regular to premium. If you do your research well, you will notice that the best products have the same features and some charge significantly less than others. Some big brands charge a premium as in anything more than $15 per user. At the same time, you can find the same features and functions with a lesser brand name, sometimes finding a better product and service.
Features to be Looking For!!
Document Management Solution.
You should be able to store, organize, share and collaborate on any document or media file. Securely drag and drop large files into my drive, network drive or a team folder quickly and easily. You should also be able to Share files attachments via email etc. A Workflow should have an option to automatically notify when someone approves, rejects, downloads, uploads, adds comments or views a document. The ability to drop files into a folder and quickly share a link with external customers, suppliers, vendors, and partners.
Your collaboration software should have a complete task management system which allows you to check tasks, across multiple projects, on one screen. Due to dates, conversations, files, checklist & time-log for each task all at one place so you can save time & are in control. Tasks should also have good Workflow. A logical flow and change state as work progresses. You should be able Re-assign work, add resource and re-prioritize. Look out for Precise notification as well that gets updates on the project tasks that you are responsible for or need to accept or reject. You should also get complete reporting in any file format.
One of the Most Import features of any online collaboration feature is the ability to manage projects. Share an update, ask a question, do a poll, recognize a team member, etc. It is also essential that you be able to invite customers or partners as guest users to give them transparency and visibility during project execution. A task management module connected to make sure your projects are on track, and that you’ve got enough resources to execute them.
These are just a few of the essential features you should look out for. Many Team Collaboration tools have added functions to these essential elements to make it, even more, user friendly to stand out more than competitor Document, Task & Project management solutions. You, of course, also have to look out for more features like Employee Blog Posts, Polls, CRM, Forms&Trackers, Events, etc.
Collaboration Software in this day and age is a must, but it is equally tricky choosing from the huge variety of options available. Before investing time, resources and a budget you have to understand what you want from such a portal, you must also have all the stakeholders on board.