Here at Matter we’re passionate about using digital tools to solve business problems. One of the biggest problems we observe across both big and small companies is ineffective collaboration. Keeping in touch with your employees seems simple enough, but when you’re actively working on multiple projects through different departments on a variety of clients, it can be difficult. Add into the mix a large workforce split across time zones and email, once the hero of office communication, starts to fall from grace.
Out of date auto responses and ‘reply all’ are just the start of why email isn’t the best way to communicate with your team. So how can you build a collaborative business?
Start using collaboration technology
72% of companies use computer-based tools but very few of those are using them correctly. As users we are accustomed to apps on our phones and tablets so why not implement them for work? There is no simple solution to solving all of your collaboration problems but we’ve picked 3 bits of tech that we use at Matter and recommend that you give them a try.
1. Instant messaging
If your office is overrun by needless emails, then try an instant messenger. There are plenty of basic versions but we recommend something that is more than just a chat tool. We use Slack, it’s a fast way to communicate internally and allows us to limit our email output. Group chats, topics, emoji’s and basic file management make it a fun yet professional way to contact your colleagues. We aren’t the only business to use Slack; it’s user-base has exploded in popularity since it went live two years ago and the company itself has been valued at $2.8 billion.
2. Ticketing systems
If your business has multiple projects, stakeholders and deadlines, then a ticketing system is essential. With a tool like Bitbucket or Jira you can continually create new tickets as they arise and chart their progress as you gradually complete your goals. Ticket systems are great for projects that have a tendency to change, it allows teams to keep track of what’s been done and what has changed. People often think of ticketing systems being used purely for technical projects, but we’ve seen our clients really benefit from using them for creative and strategic projects too. If it’s your first ticketing system, it’s worth taking a look at Trello, which starts off free and simple and grows with you as your requirements change.
3. Real time documents
Google Drive is also a fantastic cloud-based platform. It provides a ‘lite’ version of Microsoft office and allows users to create and edit simultaneously. In other words, my colleagues and I can add our holidays to a spreadsheet or edit a presentation at the same time. This isn’t necessarily a solution for a large workforce but it can make your small team a truly collaborative workforce.
The collaboration technology industry is witnessing a substantial growth, so make sure you’re not the last one to implement market-changing tech. Bitbucket, Google Drive and Slack have changed the way we work at Matter, we take inspiration from these tools and they help us to build more informed solutions for our clients.