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The meteoric rise of collaboration-first platforms

January 07, 2019

The meteoric rise of collaboration-first platforms

Recognizing the importance of tapping into a workforce’s collective knowledge and creativity, companies now see collaboration as a critical asset and an important investment to improve productivity and fuel innovation.

In a recent study, 97% of the employees and executives surveyed agreed that the level of collaboration directly impacts the outcome of a task or project. When a team or department is collaborating smoothly, openly sharing information and able to communicate seamlessly, they’re able to work at their most effective level. Another recent study found that companies that actively promote collaboration are 5 times as likely to be high performing.

Collaboration platforms have evolved
With the growth of BYOD and telecommuting, smart devices, social media and cloud-based services are significantly impacting how people interact at work. IT is now faced with the task of determining how best to create an environment that allows people to work effectively together—anytime and anywhere.

Companies are increasingly looking at more complete collaboration tools that go beyond chat-based solutions, such as Microsoft Lync. They’re finding that the marriage of voice and video with text allows for more effective communication and more seamless collaboration. And they’re attracted to collaboration-first platforms, like Cisco Webex Teams (formerly Cisco Spark) and Microsoft Teams (formerly Skype for Business), and for that very reason.

The rate of adoption of these new platforms is impressive. Microsoft, for example, launched Teams in March 2017. By September 2017, 125,000 organizations had adopted it, and by March 2018, the number of companies using it had risen to more than 200,000.

Multidimensional collaboration has become the new standard
Cisco Webex Teams enables the seamless use of high-quality video, screen sharing,
collaborative whiteboarding and phone service from any device, mobile or desktop. Thanks to end-to-end encryption, messages, files and whiteboard drawings are protected on every device that’s involved in a meeting.

Part of Microsoft Office 365, Microsoft Teams supports group chat rooms with threaded conversations and private messages between individuals, but it’s much more. Users can jump from instant messaging to a videoconference call with just the push of a button. They can also access and edit OneDrive documents without leaving the app, so they can share, discuss and edit content together.

Despite their genesis in voice, leading voice-first platforms like Ring Central, 8x8, BroadCloud and Intermedia now offer an assortment of different media options and can definitely be considered as comprehensive solutions.

The next logical step?
With platforms like these, teams can be connected anytime and anywhere. Meetings become richer and more immersive experiences, and creative ideas flow more freely through an organization. Depending on the size and nature of their organization, it just may be time for your customers to think about moving on from chat-based collaboration and graduating to something better.