Collaboration is arguably the most important component to any business. If employees aren't able to work together effectively, they aren't able to get work done. But the proliferation of out-of-office workers, remote employees, and "house" calls has also made it difficult for employees to be able to collaborate effectively. This is where cloud-based tools come in. Cloud-based tools let employees collaborate as though they were working in the same office, even from halfway across the world. Here are some of the best options for cloud collaboration tools.
Types of Cloud Collaboration Tools
Cloud-Based Chat Utilities
The ability to send and receive messages on the fly is incredibly important for employees who are on the go or out of the office. Yammer, Slack, and Skype are all utilities that allow employees to chat while on the job, while also keeping logs so that they can refer to the information that they need later on. Microsoft's Skype also functions as a high-quality video chatting system and is now integrated into Office 365 for easier use. Other utilities, such as Gmail, provide an online chat utility associated with an email account.
Cloud-Based Web Conferencing Utilities
It often becomes necessary for multiple employees to be able to communicate as though they are in the same room. Platforms such as Office 365 and Cisco WebEx have extensive support for web conferencing, allowing meetings with just a few people to dozens at the same time.
Cloud-Based Productivity Utilities
There are many productivity solutions also available, such as Evernote for notes, or Prezi for clear and concise online presentations. For Microsoft Office 365, PowerPoint and Outlook notes can both provide similar feature sets. Cloud-based productivity solutions are particularly effective because they can be used anywhere the employee goes.
Cloud-Based Storage Utilities
OneDrive, DropBox, and Google Storage are all examples of cloud-based storage utilities. Cloud-based storage makes it easier for employees to access the documents that they need, often with the references and notes that they require from other employees. OneDrive, in particular, is linked together with the rest of the Microsoft suite, creating an all-in-one system through which documents can be created and shared. Cloud-based storage utilities can often provide redundant backup copies of files and can make it easier to share files with clients and vendors.
The cloud has many options for those who are looking to improve upon collaboration. Of these tools, Microsoft Office 365 provides one of the most complete environments. If you're interested in the power of Microsoft 365 or simply want to learn more about cloud collaboration tools, ask us about our Cloud Assist 365.