Five ways to gear up your collaboration this fall

@bonnie-staring
Technology - Sep. 17, 2018

Five ways to gear up your collaboration this fall

Position your business for success with technology and tools that help your team work better together

 
 

The change in season, usually associated with hitting the books and learning new skills, is a great time for business owners to refocus their energy and work smarter, not harder. For example, collaboration among your team members can lead to streamlined processes, reduced costs, improved customer satisfaction and more. But what do you need to create the ideal environment for working together and sharing ideas? Here’s how you can use technology and software to improve your company’s ability to collaborate and help your business grow.

Working together on documents and other files makes sense, yet it can be challenging to manage version control and make sure everyone has access to necessary information. That’s where cloud-based collaboration tools come in.

Get everyone on the same page

There’s more to effective collaboration than simply choosing a software program or app for your employees to use. Determine the best times for team members to join forces, what they need to share and the best way for them to communicate with each other, then develop collaboration guidelines. These can include items such as document review processes and establishing response times, so people can focus on their tasks instead of watching for new messages or Slack alerts.

Updating your company’s collaboration approach works best when you have an internet plan that provides the bandwidth and speed you need.

Think – and work – inside the cloud

Working together on documents and other files makes sense, yet it can be challenging to manage version control and make sure everyone has access to necessary information. That’s where cloud-based collaboration tools come in. A full productivity suite of interconnected tools, such as G Suite by Google Cloud or Office 365, includes secure online file storage, file and calendar sharing, team chat and other useful products geared to improve collaboration.

Re-vamp team meetings

Sometimes all it takes is a change of venue to encourage better teamwork. Suggest a walking meeting, a short stand-up meeting or a brainstorm over lunch. Encourage attendees to bring their devices and take notes in a shared Google doc instead of a napkin. Are conference calls the norm? Make them more engaging through video conferencing and screen sharing tools, such as Hangouts Meet or Microsoft Teams. Here are more tips to improve meetings.

Make sure your internet plan supports your business

Updating your company’s collaboration approach works best when you have an internet plan that provides the bandwidth and speed you need. Avoid connectivity lags while using real-time collaboration tools, video conferencing and other online resources, with a plan that allows you and your team to do more. A faster internet speed can help boost efficiency, improve turnaround times and allow better communications throughout your team.

Keep telecommuting and travelling team members connected

Great work doesn’t need to happen at the office. You can bolster team members’ collaboration abilities with mobile devices that offer a desktop-like experience, and a cloud-based communications system will let your team answer calls via a softphone, a desk phone or a mobile device. Support team members who travel with wireless plans and roaming plans to encourage agile collaboration no matter where they are.

Ready to build your customer relationships and keep your staff on track? Improve your business communications with these tips.

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About the Author

Toronto-based writer Bonnie Staring started her own business more than a decade ago, and her work has appeared in Rogers Connected for Business, AMA Magazine, Performance in Motion and The Toronto Star.

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