Collaboration Tools 101: Best Online Collaboration Tools

Team collaboration tools, online collaboration tools or collaboration tools are necessary to work effectively in every workplace. The reasons for this are super clear. According to a study, those who were informed to act collaboratively stuck at a task 64% longer than their solitary peers while reporting super higher engagement levels, less fatigue, and a higher success rate.

However, with more individuals now working remotely, there’re big barriers to collaboration for teams spread across various geographies, having alternative time zones. 

But for those, online collaboration tools are available!

Yes, you have heard it right! Do you know about team collaboration tools? If not, today, we’ll discuss everything about online collaboration tools, how they are helpful, and what is important to choose the right one. 

But before getting deep into the topic, let’s discuss what online collaboration tools are.

What Are Online Collaboration Tools?

Collaboration tool is a form of application software that lets employees work together. Yes, it helps in sharing insights & knowledge and stay updated over local and remote networks. These tools embrace different communication systems, like messaging, chat, and videoconferencing, etc. You can find many types of collaboration tools present in the market with all the required features to help you achieve:

  • Document manage
  • Shared calendars
  • Document collaboration
  • Task management, and much more.

Assessing Your Company Collaboration Needs

If you think online collaboration is only for those employees who work in different locations, then you’re wrong! In fact, online collaboration tools are valuable for any business that desires to increase its efficiency and effectiveness. 

Nowadays, businesses must empower employees with advanced collaboration tools to improve productivity. Regardless of industry, looking for a solution that can uplift your business is necessary to stay ahead of your competition.

Empowering all your workers with team collaboration tools enhances their productivity, helps deliver the work on time, and enhances the overall workflow.

As the market is full of tools, it could be challenging to choose your business’s best one. However, the tip is to look at your business requirements and choose the tool which offers all the features your business requires. Some tools are specially designed for designers, while others for businesses rely on office productivity tools.

While specific online collaboration tools are a perfect combination of features working well for both the company executives and the designers, choose the collaboration tool wisely depending on your specific organization’s functionality and needs.

There’s a group of individuals who increasingly use collaboration tools, including remote staff members, contractors, HR teams, project managers, developers, agile team managers, etc. 

Pick The Right Tool Which Supports All Communication Methods

Team communication is everything! When you want your team members to collaborate and communicate about each and everything, it’s essential to invest in a system that the entire team can share. 

It’s essential for you to pick the tool which supports almost all communication methods, as collaboration is all about communication. So look for the tool which offers multiple communication system features, including chatting, video conferencing, emailing, etc. 

The reason is, there would be those employees who’d like to discuss the project over a phone call. At the same time, there’d be a group of those employees who want to solve problems over video conference for discussing the project details. So choose the one which integrates:

  • Messaging feature
  • Private communication feature
  • Video call feature.
  • Conference phone calls, and so on.

Go For an Easy, Intuitive Online Collaboration Tool 

 Introducing an intuitive online collaboration tool in a workplace can guarantee increased productivity and work efficiency. The reason is, these tools help employees work together and smarter. It improves communication and helps teams to work together and develop good relationships. 

However, with that, the tool must be easy. For the quick tool adapting in the workplace, it’s crucial to pick the super easy to use tool and quite adaptive. The reason is, no one would have spare time to learn the technical tool. 

And so if the new tool proves to be a bit complicated to learn, then people will prefer to get rid of it. If a new online collaboration tool has an easy interface, employees will quickly learn to use it. 

 Here’re some features you should look for:

  • Pick the one with a simple, yet intuitive interface
  • A tool must have workflow management features
  • It should be accessible from a smartphone
  • The software should provide spontaneous customer support and much more.  

Must Have Scheduling Features 

The tool must have scheduling features to track the project progress better. Pick the one which offers a scheduling feature to meet the deadlines. It helps team members to be on the same calendar and work together in collaboration. Although collaboration is often considered reviewing files and making changes, they also take accountability for deliverability. 

The idea is when employees can add the current status updates on their tasks, it could save the project manager literally a lot of time. And as a result of which everyone remains aware of current project stats. It keeps everyone updated in real-time.

  • However, look for a tool which guarantees you from creating task lists
  • Also, determine whether a particular software supports Gantt Charts
  • Lastly, verify if the software will integrate with calendar apps.
  • These are some features that you may not overlook! 

Go For a Dynamic File-Sharing Solution

An online collaboration tool is not only about sharing and editing a single file; it’s a tool that should enable a team to work on a single project. Yes, the one project may have multiple types of project files, like PDF, Word, Excel, PNG, Google Docs, etc. So the tool must be compatible with almost every type of file so that team could work effectively. This feature is important for having all-important project files easily stored, accessible, and of course, editable by other members.

Always ensure that:

  • The tool has certified security features, align with advanced IT requirements
  • It must work with all types of files
  • It must effortlessly integrate with apps.

You might find Task Management tools also useful to better perform your work.

Choose the solution with Real-Time Collaboration

There are multiple benefits of using effective online collaboration tools enough. These give the option to edit project files, leave comments, etc., without having a single file that must be checked out and checked in for version control. 

This helps maintain one current version’s consistency, no matter how many people are working on a single file. 

Although this way, it could save you a lot of time and help you move in the project much quicker, at the same time, it could create some challenges. If the software doesn’t work well, it could make it tough to manage and track changes.

However, while looking for a good collaboration tool, you can consider these key features to get the best version control:

  • Check out for  adding collaborators option
  • Understand how a tool handles multiple different track changes
  • Identify the users’ types who can overwrite changes, and so on.

Best Online Collaboration Tools

These are some fantastic features you may need to consider before buying the tool for your business to improve your productivity. We can’t deny the importance of online collaboration tools for the teams. These tools have proven helpful in maintaining work consistency, improving professional relationships, and ultimately the productivity.

So what software are you using for achieving collaboration goals? Do let us know! 

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