In this era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, technology is evolving at an exponential pace. Successfully delivering world-class results and completing a project on a stringent timeline can be difficult and demanding. Working on a time-sensitive project alone is already a challenge in itself, and when you involve a group of people for a collaborative project, it can instantly double your stress levels. Fortunately, a wide range of collaboration tools are now readily available on the market.
But do collaboration tools promote a healthy work-life balance? Do these tools help improve productivity? Are there any tangible benefits?
Collaboration tools quickly gained popularity with the advent of remote work and telecommuting. Their significance and effectiveness in enhancing productivity is still debated among some skeptics. But in our experience and according to a white paper by Frost & Sullivan (which you can read here), they are crucial to facilitating an effective, modern workplace. To find out if collaboration tools are right for you and your team, read on below.
What Are Collaboration Tools?
Collaborating for a campaign, a project, or any task can sometimes require the participation of two or more people. Looking at this scenario, it makes perfect sense to use tools that can help organise the workload, speed up task completion, solve problems, and facilitate better communication.
There are two types of collaboration tools:
1. Collaboration tools that do not depend on technology. Examples include the following:
2. Collaboration tools that are technology-dependent in the form of software or an application. Some examples are:
- Video Conferencing Software
- Instant Messaging (IM) Software
- Project Management Software
In a nutshell, these collaboration tools are used by a team or group of people working together to successfully complete a common goal or common task.
What Are the Benefits of Using Collaboration Tools?
Working with a team can be stressful at times. When great minds come together, people may not always see eye to eye. And tensions may arise when deadlines are on the horizon. Without the use of collaboration tools, working together will be all the more difficult.
Collaborations are inevitable. You may find yourself collaborating with someone or a group of people, whether it involves a simple task or a big project. Aside from using collaboration tools to improve the quality of your work life, we have compiled a list of other key benefits:
1. Better time management.
If you’re a working parent, the importance of time cannot be overstated. Juggling work tasks while raising a family is never a walk in the park. Attending meetings with clients or colleagues can be time-consuming. Waiting for updates on work progress from co-collaborators can be a hassle. But with collaboration tools you can easily:
- Schedule meetings via conference call on your computer or mobile device. Include multiple users in your virtual conference room with your WIFI and in just a few clicks.
- Provide updates with real-time communication features commonly found in most of today’s leading collaboration software.
- Do away with lengthy and time-consuming emails. Send and receive instant messages through online chat applications or software.
Collaboration tools can help you save time and multitask, enabling you to stay on task while maintaining a relatively flexible schedule.
2. Better work progress.
Collaboration tools give you more freedom to choose how you spend your time. Aside from this benefit, you can also boost your work output. Many of today’s leading collaboration tools integrate advanced features and capabilities that help monitor the progress of your team. You can easily do the following and improve how you keep track of work progress and productivity:
- Set objectives for your team through user-friendly platforms.
- Assign and monitor tasks without the need for emails, calls, or in-person meetings.
- Submit and review work through file-sharing capabilities of collaboration tools.
3. Increase financial savings.
Collaboration tools are practical and useful. Traditionally, collaborations within a company or organisation were facilitated through office meetings or telephone calls. Naturally, these resulted in additional expenses from office supplies, food, telephone bills, and the use of other resources.
With collaboration tools, you can increase your financial savings in the following ways:
- Commuting or travel expenses are reduced when team collaboration is done via collaboration tools.
- Expenses for making local and long-distance calls are reduced if collaboration tools are used as the primary method of communication.
- Extra project-related costs are mitigated through the efficient use of a collaboration tool, since it can help speed up the completion of a project or task.
Collaboration Tools for Everyone
While creating a stress-free work environment is almost impossible, taking advantage of what modern technology offers can greatly improve the quality of your work life. Collaboration tools are for practically anyone who wants to enhance their productivity. These tools can help you in a number of ways, so take your pick and start improving your collaboration experience today!