5 Ways Your Competitors Are Using Collaboration to Get Ahead
Despite recent technology advances, many employees today still work in silos. They capture vast amounts of critical information during the workday, yet the location of this information is fragmented, residing on laptops, phones and email archives.
Successful companies are taking action to solve this challenge, breaking free from silos and promoting collaboration. They are capturing all critical information in a central and easy-to-access location. But what is the best method for accomplishing this?
Start first with strategy. The key to more effective collaboration and breaking free from silos is selecting the right technology. But to effectively accomplish this, you must answer this important question: Why? What are the specific reasons you need collaboration tools? What problems are you trying to solve? For example, telecommuting rose 79 percent between 2005 and 2012, so you might be seeking methods for employees to collaborate more effectively. Discover what is driving your business need.
Select tools that integrate seamlessly into the workflow. Moving information out of silos isn’t easy, but the right collaboration tools make it possible. For example, Microsoft Office 365 effectively organizes all data into a central place. Team members can then access it remotely from anywhere with an Internet connection.
Streamline updates and maintenance. You may have an in-house IT support department, or an external IT partner, but regardless, collaboration tools rooted in the cloud make updates easier and minimize disruption to the workflow. For example, with Office 365, updates, patches and upgrades happen in the background without any additional effort from users.
Ensure that downtime is minimized. Nothing is worse than having a project come to a halt because of technical challenges. Many cloud options, however, guarantee uptime. For example, Office 365 guarantees 99 percent uptime.
Measure collaboration efforts. Talk to your team. Are they adjusting to the new technology? Do they feel more connected, and has their workflow improved? Adjustments take time, but getting feedback about the tools is effective for improving collaboration in the future.
Stay nimble and adjust. The most effective organizations are fluid and nimble, making changes as they go along. Taking this approach will help employees boost productivity and better serve your customers.