noun: the action of working with someone to produce or create something.
In business terms, collaboration used to mean a conversation across a desk. With Unified Communications, it has evolved to mean an interactive experience on multiple devices, with multiple methods, between multiple people, located in different states/countries/continents, anytime, anywhere. Knowledge is shared in real time, work is done more efficiently, and relationships between employees, vendors, customers and suppliers are taken to another level. Collaboration plays a critical role in today’s business environment.
Recently I worked with an AltiGen vendor to provide some information on Call Center Solutions for a webinar they were conducting. One person began the arduous task of putting together a deck, filling in what they knew, then passed it around to others for assistance… people in different departments in their company that would be able to contribute. The large file was passed on email servers multiple times (in total, different revisions probably were sent at least 60 times), with input from different sources, making it extremely difficult to keep track of the latest revision. When a question arose on one of the slides, the administrator of the presentation chased down the source via email to clarify, only to get another employee answer the same question differently, leaving the originator of the presentation with conflicting information. Needless to say, the process took at least twice as long as it should have, and the end product had some gaps.
With advanced collaboration tools, much like the ones found in Skype for Business, this process could have been, and should have been, much less time consuming, bandwidth consuming, and overall a better end result. Here’s a few reasons why:
- Instant messaging = Instant answer
- Desktop sharing could have made explaining document changes easier
- Easy transfer of files and images, not waiting on email
- Communicate within Office apps. Collaborate right within the PowerPoint documents using IM, screen share, talk or video chat.
- The organizer could have started meetings right from PowerPoint to present what he was working on and get us all on the same page.
- Content sharing – integrated real-time co-authoring, desktop sharing, application sharing, and PowerPoint presentations.
Learn how a Hosted Skype for Business deployment as part of your Unified Communications strategy can improve your business processes. Attend our webinar, Hosted Skype for Business: Cost Effectively Deploy in the Cloud.