Workplace collaboration is arguably the most important function of modern day knowledge work. It’s impossible to build a successful business, scale a team or launch a new product without bringing together multiple people to solve problems, provide feedback or gain valuable insights.
But as work continues to evolve and geographically-dispersed teams become the norm, the same tools you used ten years ago aren’t going to cut it today. Whiteboards, dry erase markers and conference rooms just aren’t feasible when your team is spread across the country, or trying to balance hybrid schedules.
And that’s why unified communications (UC) tools have become so popular in the last few years. Leveraging a fully-integrated platform is the only way for modern teams to achieve seamless collaboration. But how?
All-in-one collaboration hub
As the name suggests, UC solutions bring together a variety of digital features into a single application or platform. Rather than clicking back and forth between a handful of applications, users rely on a single interface for all communication and collaboration needs, from calling and messaging to meeting and collaborating.
According to a study published by McKinsey, knowledge workers are spending an average of 14 percent of their work week communicating and collaborating internally. Imagine how the efficiency of that time fluctuates depending on the collaboration tools available to employees. If Joe is spending more time jumping between apps than sharing information, the overall productivity of the company suffers.
Platforms like Cisco Webex and Microsoft Teams become collaboration accelerators when coupled with cloud voice capabilities. All means and methods of communication are hosted in a single space so you can call Jeff, share a file with Janae and whiteboard an idea with the marketing team from a single app.
If all your stakeholders are working from the same physical office, conference rooms and collaboration spaces are perfect. But we know that’s no longer the case. Today’s teams need to be able to work from anywhere, on any device, at any time.
According to a report by Alfresco, 83 percent of professionals depend on technology to collaborate, and while only 49 percent of them use mobile devices for collaboration, 92 percent agree that it’s important. In other words, the majority of your staff expects to be provided with a mobile-enabled collaboration tool.
Many solutions (Cisco Webex and Microsoft Teams included) offer downloadable mobile clients to support remote communication. Users get a unified, consistent experience across these clients, whether they’re using a desktop or smartphone application. The consistency and ease-of-use simplifies and streamlines collaboration, no matter where your team members happen to be located.
Single source of information
When collaboration happens across multiple platforms, things can get lost oh-so-easily. Having a single UC tool that keeps a record of all chats, contacts and documents makes content management much more efficient. You can search for people, conversations, links, files and whatever else you might need, without having to search through a dozen different applications.
Whether you’re working in Microsoft Teams or Cisco Webex, all of your progress is recorded in group channels or spaces, so that you’ll never lose track of projects. Persistent spaces prevent information silos, unnecessary back-and-forth and delays in decision-making.
Things move too fast today to be sending employees on wild goose chases for documents, files and information. UC tools keep everything at their fingertips, ensuring they stay focused, organized and productive.
No matter your organization, industry or work style preferences, a unified communications platform is a must-have for your corporate toolbox. As the workforce and its expectations continue to evolve, we’ll see more organizations adopting UC solutions, becoming more collaborative and edging out the competition.
To make sure you’re on the right track, give us a call and we can find the perfect UC solution for your collaboration needs.