The Top New Ways Employees Are Collaborating Online

Image via Shutterstock.com

Image via Shutterstock.com

Digital collaboration promises to keep employees working smarter for decades to come. With recent advances in storage, bandwidth, and cloud-based software, there are now more choices for collaboration than ever. Ease-of-use for the end user often dictates which tools are used, and these technologies are advancing at such a startling rate that most IT departments can’t keep up. Here’s a list of the top ways employees are working together in the digital space.

SMS Messaging
Junior and senior employees alike are quickly replacing email with text messages, which can be dispatched quickly and easily from any situation. Texting during meetings may be bad business etiquette, but it does keep important project momentum going.

Video Conferencing
Promised for decades and seldom delivered in a usable fashion, video conferencing is gaining steam thanks to Google Hangouts, Skype, and Blue Jeans. These popular collaboration tools allow users to simultaneously share computer screens, see each other’s faces, and collaborate on files. With recent enhancements to tune up file-sharing and collaboration, video conferencing tools are making headway into the corporate sector.

Unsecured Cloud-based Software
From Evernote to Google Docs to Apple’s iCloud, collaborating online through cloud-based solutions has never been easier. Simply upload a document, type in the email information of fellow collaborators, and go. But what happens to those files once work is done?

Corporate and Personal Email
Though it is the most basic form of online communication, email attachments are still a top-ranking method of collaboration. While this presents versioning and security issues, it may be the fastest method for transferring smaller files between groups of coworkers.

Enterprise Collaboration Software
As many companies accept the reality that employees are putting corporate data at risk through vulnerable cloud-based tools and email, they are adopting on-premises or cloud-based collaboration software. The best tools in this category use simple yet powerful workflows to make sure employees only share files with the right parties and that those files are not vulnerable to outsiders.

Online collaboration has the potential to make your organization more agile and efficient. That said, the techniques listed in this article offer little in the way of enterprise security, leaving sensitive data at risk. Executives must understand how to manage use of collaboration software and implement a solution that lets employees take the path of least resistance to collaboration.

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