Collaboration and communication tools are essential to the success of any project, especially for remote teams. They help increase productivity and connections between employees while allowing them to access information from anywhere and at any time.
However, too many options can become stressful, especially when you have to start each workday juggling various tools to stay on top of things. This article explores some tips and tools to help you use collaboration tools more effectively.
Overloading your team with collaboration tools isn’t the answer to better productivity; on the contrary, it can lead to:
- Reduce productivity because your team spends more time searching for information across multiple platforms than completing tasks.
- Projects delayed because communication falls through the cracks.
- Reduced collaboration as some people may find it difficult to get to grips with multiple collaboration platforms.
- Difficult access to information when you need it.
- Juggling between many collaborative applications can lead to context switching and less efficiency.
- Unnecessary expense as many of these software solutions have overlapping functionality and require subscription fees.
So, if collaboration tools are crucial for teamwork, how do you avoid these issues?
1. Prioritize the needs of your team and your business
It’s important to start by realizing that effective collaboration isn’t about technology, it’s about your people and how they interact to achieve common goals. Collaboration and communication tools intervene to enable and facilitate this.
Therefore, you should start by assessing your company’s needs and the type of culture you want to create for your team. Plus, get a clear view of the type of tasks your team performs day-to-day and the best ways to interact with each other.
For example, if you want to promote trust and the freedom to work flexible hours, choose digital solutions that enable asynchronous communication and collaboration, such as Turn and yac, might work better. These tools keep your employees focused during their most productive timeline.
On the other hand, if your team is mostly on the go and you value real-time communication, tools that facilitate synchronous communication and provide both desktop and mobile access, like Softmight be your best option.
Once you have a clear idea of your needs and the type of culture you want to promote, it’s easier to narrow down the options that fit your working approach. Choosing a tool just because it’s popular can inadvertently alter your company’s culture and operating system, leading to unproductive results.
2. Take advantage of workspace suites
After assessing your business needs and with the goal of reducing the number of collaboration tools you use, you can start by looking for all-in-one or multi-purpose platforms that offer a range of features needed to run your company.
These solutions are specifically designed to bring it all together by combining the essential features and functionality of multiple applications into a single platform, eliminating the hassle of opening multiple programs to access information.
By doing so, they save time and money while making it easier for everyone to get things done without missing any updates. They are ideal for small and medium businesses that don’t necessarily need the latest bells and whistles, but rather a simple and straightforward solution that helps them run smoothly.
These tools allow you to message, call, take notes, assign tasks, and even plan projects, all from one place. Some examples of the best workspace suites that offer multiple features to streamline your workflow include Peak Where Same page. You can use any of these tools to consolidate all your activities.
3. Choose the best tools that enable integrations
Say your organization specializes in a specific area of business, and your multi-purpose platform seems like a “jack of all trades.” In this case, you should consider finding the best solutions suitable for individual functions that can be easily integrated with each other.
If project management is your primary focus, you might want to look into tools with features like task creation and assignment, robust search capabilities, multiple dashboard views, reports on project status and project templates.
However, you should also consider project management solutions that offer integration possibilities with other tools, for example, Hive, monday.comWhere Wrike. This way, you can use a few tools suited for specific purposes and connect them for even better results.
Moreover, these tools are user-friendly, which makes it easy for anyone to learn and use them effectively.
4. Create a centralized knowledge repository
As mentioned above, one of the main disadvantages of using too many collaboration tools is that employees waste valuable time jumping from one platform to another to access information or harassing other colleagues with questions that have been answered repeatedly.
To avoid this, you can store all essential information in a centralized knowledge base easily accessible from anywhere. You can use a company-internal wiki tool like tetra to store everything from company-wide policies and how-to tutorials to specific product information. Anyone authorized can add and edit files, creating an intuitive collaboration platform that helps employees share information with each other.
The idea is that each member of the team can directly access this knowledge base to find information and get answers to any questions or problems they may have.
Start your journey to effective communication and collaboration now
If you are currently facing too much clutter when it comes to communication and collaboration tools, consider implementing the solutions above.
By using the best possible digital collaboration solutions and strategies for your business, you are taking a big step towards becoming more productive, saving money in the long run, and improving overall performance.
As you grow and your business becomes more demanding, you can always revise your processes to meet your changing needs.
Knowledge sharing in the workplace can be powerful, but only if you create an environment that encourages it. Here are some tools and tips to help you.
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