Best Collaboration Tools
- Top Rated Collaboration Tools include: Slack, Google Drive, Trello, Dropbox Business, Asana, Jabber, Evernote, and Basecamp.
- Other Collaboration Tools on the TrustMap include: Skype for Business, Confluence, Workplace, Podio, MS SharePoint, Jive, HipChat, and Microsoft Yammer.
- A complete list of Collaboration Tools is available here.
TrustMaps are two-dimensional charts that compare products based on satisfaction ratings and research frequency by prospective buyers. Products must have 50 or more ratings to appear on this TrustMap, and those above the median line are considered Top Rated.
Collaboration Tools Overview
What are Collaboration Tools?Collaboration software makes working together on professional projects easier and faster. It reduces bottlenecks in feedback and approval processes. The three core areas of functionality for collaboration tools are:
- Project & task management
- File sharing & management
Collaboration tools are closely related to a number of other types of software, including:
- Business communications (e.g. email, phone, web conferencing)
- Community platforms
- Cloud storage
- Project management software
- Online office suites (such as G Suite and Microsoft Office 365)
Sometimes collaboration tools can replace these more traditional solutions, but it is more common to integrate collaboration tools with existing communication and workflow structure. Often collaboration tools bring interactions that would otherwise be handled by separate platforms into a convenient central location.
Collaboration Tools Features & Capabilities
CommunicationSome collaboration tools have communication capabilities at their core. Examples include Skype, Google Hangouts, and HipChat. Other collaboration features are available but may have a limited scope.
Communication features across collaboration tools include:
- Options for integrated messaging. Live chat, comments within a file and private/group messages are all common
- Privacy and access settings
- Conference calling
- Video chats with screensharing
- Project-based conversations
Project & Task Management
Project management features are usually more important to larger teams. They also work for interdepartmental teams or teams within larger organizations. Collaboration features related to project & task management can include:
Tracking location and changes to a file
Task lists and assignments. These are complete with due dates, sub-tasks and file attachment
Scheduling, calendar integration, reminders and alerts
File Sharing & Management
Support for different file types
Comments and notes attached to files
Track changes and versioning
Editing permissions and access control
Online Collaboration Tools
Creating an internal knowledge base for employees with a product like Confluence
Creating flow charts or mapping out ideas visually with a product like MindMeister
Creating group to-do lists with a product like Trello
It is important to choose a collaboration tool that is easy to use. The tool should also fit your team’s culture and goals. There are dozens of collaboration products on the market -- and it’s ever-growing!
To help you find a good fit, consider these questions:
What types of projects will you collaborate on?
What are the steps of a typical project?
How does your team handle communication and workflow?
Where do you store project files?
How many people will be collaborating? How many departments?
Will project managers or team members be collaborating? Both?
What other platforms and apps does your team use? How does the tool handle integration?
How formal or informal will collaboration be? Will all discussions be related to work on specific projects, or will some be social?
Will all conversations be archived?
Most vendors offer a free tier for up to a certain number of users. The free tiers usually have a more limited set of features and capabilities. There are many basic free online collaboration options, including GoVisually, Trello, Podio and Google Drive for example.
For paid plans, pure collaboration tools focused on notes, tasks, and chat start around $8/mo. per user. For collaboration tools that include cloud storage, pricing starts at around $10/mo. per user, and goes up from there based on storage size.
In addition to being an intranet solution, OnSemble is also an employee collaboration and engagement platform that allows users to build an intranet without any programming. The vendor’s value proposition is that OnSemble empowers over 55,000+ people and organizations with increased productivity,...
HackerEarth is an innovation management solution that is designed to help companies efficiently manage ideation.With HackerEarth Sprint companies can: Crowdsource/ Capture ideasValidateShortlistDevelop proof of conceptSprint enables companies to engage with employees, partners, vendors, and...
STORE OPERATIONS Store visit reports, Daily store checklists, Periodic reports, Snag reporting. Operations teams support and control stores across chain through a single window.VISUAL MERCHANDISINGRoll out, Implementation Review, Scorecard, Training, Best practices. VM teams drive One look across...
Onehub provides cloud-based enterprise file storage and sharing for businesses of any size. According to the vendor, key features and business benefits include: Bank-level security, with 256-bit encryptionBetter control of your file sharing through precise permission controls that are both...
Agora is a daily digest that discovers and surfaces the most important ideas and insights on Slack.Agora is an intelligent bot that weeds out the noise in natural conversations. It offers a Slack digest when you want about the topics you care about - as well as tagging ideas, urgent items,...
ClickUp aims to be a simple and intuitive platform for managing every project imaginable. ClickUp's core purpose is to remove the frustrations, inefficiencies, and disconnect caused by the current project management ecosystem. ClickUp is built for teams of all sizes and industries, and offers...
Frontify is brand management software in the cloud. The purpose of Frontify is to gather all essential brand tools in one place, such as style guides, UI patterns, media assets, etc., with the goal of making brand information more accessible and simplifying the life of everyone working with a...
Stride from Atlassian is a new kind of messaging that aims to: turns conversations into action with integrated collaboration toolsbrings all the right people together instantly with built-in voice and video conferencinggives you the space to focus so you can get to done, faster
Creativity 365 is a comprehensive, cross-device contention creation tool set designed for both business and creative professionals. The suite aims to help individuals and teams collaborate and improve their productivity and efficiency. The set includes five apps along with 1TB Kdan Cloud storage...
BroadSoft Team-One is a collaboration app, with group and private messaging, workspaces (for messages, notes, tasks, and files related to particular teams or projects), file sharing, note taking, video conferencing, and task management. Cisco announced their acquisition of BroadSoft October 2017.
Simpplr is a social intranet built on the Salesforce platform. It is designed to facilitate collaboration between employees in different departments and locations. Simpplr includes an employee directory, personal profiles, and an activity feed, as well as company news updates, an events calendar,...
Hygger (formerly Atlaz) is a complete project management platform for Agile teams.It integrates all processes and projects under one solution and enables task planning, issue and progress tracking, time tracking with reports, resource management, transparent team communication and much...
OnBoard from Passageways is a board portal that also serves as a collaboration tool that is designed to make meetings easier. This solution is suited for multiple users from growing startups to Fortune 1000 organizations. The vendor says it is designed for the end-user from the start and can be...
GanttPRO is a project planning tool based on a Gantt chart approach. It visualizes all tasks along a timeline so managers and teams are able to have a full and easy-to-understand picture of projects. In GanttPRO, users can:- Create tasks with their start/end dates;- Assign tasks, track their...
Norwegian company appear.in offers their flagship video conferencing platform to small teams, both in a free edition hosting up to 4 guests simultaneously in a session or a paid edition that supports up to 12 simultaneous meeting guests, among other features.
Staffbase is the employee communication platform for communicators in large, distributed organizations. Using a mobile first approach, it allows internal communicators to reach every employee through various channels like news, mobile magazine, chat rooms and surveys. Analytics and reports allow...
OfficeAmp is an extension to Slack (a Slackbot) from Indian company Anaek that supports task prioritization and completion, and is meant to amplify Slack's capabilities.
HighQ in London offers Collaborate, their cloud-based enterprise collaboration platform, featuring secure file sharing but also means for sharing documents with users outside the enterprise, as well as a user-interface optimized for mobile devices and intuitive interface, with real-time...
Twist is a collaboration application offered by Doist, suggested to teams as a calmer topically organized conversation tracker to better manage multiple streams of conversation and idea sharing. Discounts are offered for non-profits and student users.
Ellucian, an education technology company, offers the Ellucian Luminis Platform, a student portal that allows higher education institutions to provide a personalized and up-to-date means of communication and digital collaboration.
Contus Fly is an instant messaging app solution that helps businesses to build chat-apps. With expertise in this field for over a decade, Contus Fly provides chat app solutions to all kinds of parties from startups to reputed brands. Its API assists customers in building their own collective...
Intel Unite is a collaboration tool combining document sharing, visual collaboration, whiteboarding, and meeting space controls in a single platform.
Get work done faster in one place. Workrooms® is the Collaboration tool combining the world of Project & Task Management with a full-fledged enterprise level cloud storage including file annotations, meta-information, preview, review & approval. Workrooms® is best used by teams of 5 or...
Hiver helps you manage customer support and sales right from your Gmail. With Hiver, teams can collaborate on Shared email accounts like support@ or sales@ without having to leave their Gmail accounts. Hiver works like a full-fledged help desk, built right into Gmail. It gives you everything you...
According to the vendor, Kopano Groupware Core provides the solid foundation for groupware messaging enabling rich clients such as Kopano WebApp, Kopano DeskApp, mobile and sync clients. With its modular architecture, Kopano Groupware Core hereby enables the possibility for a variety of setup...