Workplaces are always evolving. However, in recent months we have seen organisations around the world change rapidly to support their employees as they move towards remote working solutions. As lockdown orders ease, the idea of returning to business as usual is still a difficult one for most companies and employees. In order to successfully navigate this period of limbo, businesses can benefit from increased collaboration.
The Power of Collaboration
Collaboration is not a new concept, but it has taken on a different meaning in 2020. Many companies have had to transition their employees to remote work, which has made a reliance on technology for collaboration more important than ever. If you look at how businesses have adapted, investments in the right technology have proven to be critical. Just look at the data on Cisco Webex Conferencing and Webex Calling. In 2020, the platform has exploded with three times as much growth. In April alone, Cisco Webex meeting technology hosted 500 million participants for an impressive 35 billion minutes of meeting time.
Research supports this data. More than 50 percent of organizations that use Cisco Webex conferencing noted an improvement in business processes. Email activity was nearly cut in half while productivity climbed by 32 percent. All this is possible whether workers are in the office or at home.
Given the obvious advantages, businesses would be at risk if they choose not to invest in remote working solutions like Cisco Webex Meeting platforms. Here are the top eight ways collaboration can boost productivity for your business whether you are in the office or outside of it.
1. Communication Across Departments
One of the most powerful ways collaboration boosts productivity is by breaking down normal barriers within the office. Think about how a typical business is organized. Most departments are segmented off from one another. Sometimes, these departments are on different floors or even in different buildings. With these natural barriers, arranging in-person meetings is easier said than done. Collaboration technologies completely bypass this obstacle. Technologies like Webex Calling make meetings with other departments seamless, fast and efficient. As a result, questions get answered faster, and issues are resolved more effectively.
2. Real-Time Information
Collaboration typically requires more than an exchange of ideas. Most of the time, employees need to share files, images or data records. Collaboration technology can drastically improve the way this sharing works through the use of data syncing and real-time file sharing. This means that other employees can see the necessary files immediately during a live conversation without productivity being impacted by a less streamlined system.
3. Reduce Administrative Tasks
With collaboration tools, it is possible to do more than streamline your work. You can actually reduce it. Collaboration tools allow employees to instantly share information on policies, programs, scheduling, budgeting and more. By sharing this information through collaboration software, there are fewer daily tasks to complete. This added time lets employees focus on other, more productive goals.
4. Improve the Customer Experience
When a business is focused on collaboration, productivity is not only experienced internally, customers and clients will also notice the change. Through focused collaboration, companies can better meet the needs of consumers. These consumers can be seamlessly connected to the best employee for their needs from the start. This allows consumer issues to be dealt with faster, which is a benefit to the consumer and the company.
5. Stay Connected to Vendors and Suppliers
Other types of external communication are also streamlined when businesses invest in the right collaboration technologies. This includes interactions with vendors and suppliers. Vendors and suppliers serve a critical role for most businesses, but these points of transit can also represent significant loss. When time is wasted in miscommunication and delayed paperwork, precious productive hours are also lost. Effective collaboration tools that support streamlined communication, and file sharing can give some of those hours back. This can save time and money for businesses.
6. Enhance Problem-Solving
No matter how good a business is, problems can occur. In fact, a good business is not defined by a lack of problems. A good business is defined by its response to problems. This is another area that can be addressed by collaboration technology. With the right collaboration tools at your disposal, your business is better prepared to make smart, informed and comprehensive decisions. When your employees collaborate freely, meetings can be scheduled faster and include the right team members. Files can be shared with ease to assess all parts of the issue. This greatly enhances any company’s ability to solve problems and foster productivity once more.
7. Tap Into Innovation
As collaboration tools streamline communication and administration, employees are available for other, more important tasks. This sparks a different kind of productivity. Instead of merely completing things, employees will be able to innovate more dynamically. The innovation is fostered in a collaborative environment where employees are able to connect easily with others and are not bogged down in red tape. This means your business will not just achieve more things. Your business will achieve better things.
8. Avoid Mistakes
Finally, smart collaboration tools will improve transparency and visibility throughout the company. When this happens, employees are more accountable for what they do and it helps prevent mistakes. Mistakes are easy to make when processes are segmented and employees are isolated. With collaboration, there are more natural checks and balances in place. This can prevent costly mistakes on a very broad scale.
Although collaboration tools have been incredibly important for businesses recently, it is important to remember that they are not merely remote working solutions. Such tools can provide benefits for companies when employees are in the office or not. Equipping your company with the best collaboration tools will improve business efficiencies and prove a powerful solution for work from home and office environments.