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Best Collaboration Tools
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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.
Listings (226-242 of 242)
CenturyLink® Business Applications offer powerful tools without having to buy expensive software or worry about upgrades and troubleshooting. Business Applications don't just help you save time and money, they help you improve overall efficiency by enabling easy collaboration across your whole bu...
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 communica...
Users can build an intranet quickly and easily with MyHubs cloud-based intranet portal software, according to the vendor. Whether MyHubs intranet caters to companies of all sizes, from small business to corporate. It is a low-cost intranet solution that provides an out of the box intranet with a ...
MiTek offers SAPPHIRE Viewer, a 3D BIM viewing and collaboration tool for homebuilders and construction professional to share diagrams and information with customers and other collaborators.
Lenovo offers AirStack, a platform for sharing information about enterprise applications to support tracking, planning, and business use optimization, as well as onboarding by familiarizing app users with the technology stack.
Lenovo offers, AirClass, an online collaboration and meetings platform featuring shareable whiteboard, chat, engagement tracking, and other features.
AgreeYa Solutions offers SocialXtend, an enterprise Intranet and social collaboration platform supporting people and team collaboration, member directory, document search, and other sharing and collaboration features.
Zoho Corporation offers their suite of collaboration and productivity apps, and messaging tools: Zoho Workplace.
Fugu is an all-purpose team chat software that enables employees to communicate and collaborate from a single platform. Users can share ideas, discuss projects, and manage attendance with Fugu. The product easily integrates with the third party tools for effective management, and is available to ...
Parsable in San Francisco offers their mobile workforce collaboration platform, supporting status checking and job management, shift management, digital oversight, and other tools for mobile work execution.
Viima is the best way to collect and develop ideas. What's more, the SaaS offering is free for up to 50 users and can be taken into use within minutes! Viima is designed to make innovation management more transparent, super easy and effortless for everyone involved. Viima supports all kinds of d...
TrueConf Server is a powerful, high-quality and highly secured video conferencing software server. It is specially designed to work with up to 250 participants in a multipoint conference over LAN or VPN networks. TrueConf Server requires no hardware and includes client applications for all popula...
Abstract, from the company of the same name headquartered in San Francisco, offers a collaboration tool for developers and others, featuring a version controlled master file set and approval workflow.
NEC Meeting Center (NMC) is a configurable collaboration tool featuring audio conferencing with scheduling and calendar integration, web collaboration and sharing, and mass notification system.