Best Collaboration Tools123Collaboration platforms applications are software tools that adds broad social networking capabilities to work processes. Collaboration tools differ from community platforms in that they are focused on making internal teams more productive by enabling document sharing, workflow, social collaboration, etc.Kopano Groupware1https://dudodiprj2sv7.cloudfront.net/product-logos/cK/Fj/34H7LGEN13RU.JPEGParsable2https://dudodiprj2sv7.cloudfront.net/vendor-logos/64/Wo/E22LT98P3PGK-180x180.JPEGViima3https://dudodiprj2sv7.cloudfront.net/product-logos/oZ/7Q/0UAJGH2HHTUK.PNGNetpresenter4https://dudodiprj2sv7.cloudfront.net/product-logos/CF/CY/T2T6VZXB6QTG.PNGSpeakap5https://dudodiprj2sv7.cloudfront.net/product-logos/K3/oW/5WULMB2TS1S3.JPEGTroop Messenger6https://dudodiprj2sv7.cloudfront.net/product-logos/vO/tf/AJOWG5TJTR62.JPEGCenturyLink Unified Communications & Collaboration Solutions7https://dudodiprj2sv7.cloudfront.net/vendor-logos/OK/UO/KTW2ZSTJRMM2-180x180.JPEGCenturyLink Business Applications8https://dudodiprj2sv7.cloudfront.net/vendor-logos/OK/UO/KTW2ZSTJRMM2-180x180.JPEGAirStack9https://dudodiprj2sv7.cloudfront.net/vendor-logos/LR/zp/V0HPUC83UP3G-180x180.JPEGAirClass10https://dudodiprj2sv7.cloudfront.net/vendor-logos/LR/zp/V0HPUC83UP3G-180x180.JPEGAgreeYa SocialXtend11https://dudodiprj2sv7.cloudfront.net/vendor-logos/mq/aO/G2Q7AV2SJN2J-180x180.JPEGZoho Workplace12https://dudodiprj2sv7.cloudfront.net/vendor-logos/Tb/S3/GM6HDTKVEP4R-180x180.PNG

Collaboration Tools

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:

  • Communication
  • Project & task management
  • File sharing & management
Some products stress one feature set over another. These take a best-of-breed approach, and work well if they offer integrations. For example, Slack is an online team collaboration app focused on messaging and file sharing. For everything else, it integrates with other software tools.

Collaboration tools are closely related to a number of other types of software, including:

All of these platforms include collaboration features, though most are limited to a specific channel or type of interaction.

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

Communication

Some 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

Many online collaboration tools have basic project and task management capabilities. They are not usually as advanced as traditional project management platforms. Collaboration tools noted for significant project & task management features include:

Others walk the line of collaboration and project management. For example, Wrike features project management tools, but it’s designed like a social network to make engaging with team members easy.

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:

  • Workflow automation

  • Tracking location and changes to a file

  • Brainstorming tools/pinboards

  • Task lists and assignments. These are complete with due dates, sub-tasks and file attachment

  • Scheduling, calendar integration, reminders and alerts

  • Gantt charts

File Sharing & Management

Some tools focus on file sharing and management. These include:


They also offer significant opportunities for collaboration. Collaboration features central to file sharing include:

  • Security

  • Support for different file types

  • Comments and notes attached to files

  • Track changes and versioning

  • Editing permissions and access control

  • Shared folders

Online Collaboration Tools

Locally hosted collaboration solutions (like Redbooth Private Cloud) are less common than online SaaS collaboration tools. Online solutions are more abundant and often more convenient for end-users. They work particularly well for remote teams and employees who need to collaborate on common tasks.

They come in many forms, from mobile apps to browser extensions.

Some tools are industry and use case-specific. For example, Mural.ly and ConceptBoard are tools for graphic designers. On the other hand, Microsoft Yammer is more like a social network for corporate enterprises, regardless of department or industry. Other use cases for collaboration software include:

  • 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

Adoption

Adoption is key to success with collaboration software. It is only effective if everyone on the team is on board with the software.

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?

Pricing Information

Collaboration software is usually priced by user on a monthly subscription.

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.

Collaboration Products

Listings (226-237 of 237)

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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 sce...

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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.

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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...

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Netpresenter is employee communications software used by organizations like Johnson & Johnson, TNT, George Washington University Hospital, Volkswagen and Neutrogena. The platform promises to enable organizations to improve their employee communications as well as their employee safety. Over 5...

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Speakap is the award-winning secure and private platform enabling organizations of all sizes to engage with their non-desk and customer-facing employees, improving customer experience and business value. Sharing campaigns, best practices and results across locations, our clients see a 10% increas...

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Instant messaging for business allows people to communicate relaying information in real time. However, corporate chat app is a contemporary update to the ancient email communication cutting out time, expense and effort at the same time. Nowadays many organizations are using instant messaging for...

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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...

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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.

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Lenovo offers, AirClass, an online collaboration and meetings platform featuring shareable whiteboard, chat, engagement tracking, and other features.

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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.

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Zoho Corporation offers their suite of collaboration and productivity apps, and messaging tools: Zoho Workplace.