Collaboration tools are trending high on the priority list of enterprises in 2015. Thanks to the enhancement they offer in the performances of various tasks within the enterprise, they have found their rightful place in today’s fast-paced organization. However, if the adoption of such collaboration tools for the improvement of production and performance isn’t yet on your list, make sure it gets there this year!
What is collaboration?
Collaboration can simply be defined as a working practice whereby people in an organization work in sync toward a common resolution to achieve business benefits and mutual goals. It is a joint effort of individual employees or groups of employees to accomplish a task or complete a project successfully.
2015 has quite a few collaboration trends in store. Some of these trends are mere extensions of the ones that are already in practice, while some of these collaboration trends are novel and innovative in nature. Enterprises may not even know how these collaboration trends can be beneficial to the performance of their organization.
Collaboration Tools are undergoing a change to suit the constantly varying needs of enterprises. Here are some trends to look out for this year. These trends have been gathered as a result of observations and surveys carried out through various enterprises.
1) Boost Existing Collaboration Tools
In 2015, the focus would not be on introducing additional Collaboration Tools. Instead, enterprises will find the need to boost and enhance the existing tools to be more resourceful, effective and streamlined. Various departments like finance, marketing, human resources, etc. will enhance the already existing tools that are part of their core business to collaborate.
2) Minor Collaboration Tools
Enterprises have been in the habit of using minor collaboration tools such as emails, online chat and file sharing on a daily basis. This year, enterprises will emphasize on the utilization of such minor tools for creating a better impact on collaboration between employees and teams. These tools will be integrated with other core business tools to deliver a completely different experience.
3) Effective Task Management Software
The major emphasis out here is on ‘Task Management’. In 2014, a few enterprising companies invested in task management software. While a few of these software were standalone applications, others were bought, assimilated or integrated into the existing task management software that enterprises currently use. These companies saw huge profits and hence, 2015 will see a similar trend taking over numerous other large enterprises, small businesses and even entrepreneurs.
4) Distributed collaboration is the new norm
No enterprise can suffice and perform with just a single employee. Collaboration is an imperative factor in the performance enhancement of an enterprise. Distributed collaboration is the latest trend. Time is money and with the assistance of effective communication and distributed collaboration, enterprises gain the ability to make their employees work as one big integrated team, whether the teams are vast distances or even time zones apart.
5) Cross-trained employees to function across teams
The norm that is being followed in most organizations is that employees are cross-trained on various aspects of a project. This enhances distributed collaboration and is seen as a positive point towards the functioning of an enterprise. An employee can work on three to four projects on an average, thus enabling the employee to grasp more knowledge, experience and expertise. Even teams can simultaneously work on multiple projects at any given point in time.
6) Enhance the use of Collaboration Tools like Mobile and BOYD
Even though BOYD has been gaining consistent importance over the last 6 years, 2015 is likely to be the year that BOYD will go mainstream. Desktops are still being used in companies for the purpose of working, storing data and accessing emails; however, the mobile and tablet trend has taken the business world by storm. Employees can now access their emails on their personal mobiles as it is convenient, time saving and familiar to work with. Work files can easily be converted into formats that are compatible with mobile devices and hence employees tend to favor the use of their personal mobiles even if they are in the office. This year, enterprises will focus on the benefit of mobile collaboration apps and focus on software companies creating more such collaborative tools.
7) Big Data Analysis
Enterprises tend to undertake various initiatives but at times, are unable to prove the performance enhancement value of these exercises. Big Data provides these enterprises the technology to collect and analyze this data and then utilize it to improve performance. But it doesn’t stop there. Collection and analysis has to then be put into action through practices of data sharing and application. Whether you are an entrepreneur or a full-fledged enterprise, understanding the importance of the application of data collected is what will make your decisions more confident and productive.
8) Promoting additional users
This year, enterprises will lay a major focus on gaining new customers and successfully retaining the existing customers by providing information through a common knowledge sharing base. Such collaboration is likely to see a downfall of the typical customer help desk, as social media collaboration takes a center stage. Some customers may still be comfortable with the idea of real time solutions. For such customers, online social forums will play a critical role in the distribution of information.
9) Cloud Storage
2014 witnessed various cloud storage vendors like Google, Microsoft and Dropbox battle it out. Enterprises were majorly focused on the cost of such file storage options. This year, the focus will be shifted from “How much it costs to store files?” to “How does the storage of these files improve business performance?” This means that companies will now emphasize on aspects of security, business-use cases and ready support for business developers.
The main point of focus this year will be to effectively enhance the existing collaboration tools and utilize technology to create instrumental strategies, for both entrepreneurs and large enterprises. Staying in line with changing trends is after all the best way to ensure the onset and augmentation of success!