If you didn’t know already, the days of having all of your project team in the same office are long gone. With the rise of the digital workplace, this isn’t too much of a surprise.
This change means that project management has to evolve. You must find new ways of connecting with remote employees, to ensure that they can contribute fully to the successful completion of your projects.
This is not easy to achieve. Especially when you consider that one survey found that 39% of employees believe that people in their own organisation don’t collaborate enough.
The solution is surprisingly simple – online collaboration software.
What is online collaboration software?
If you haven’t heard of online collaboration software, you soon will. The value of the market is set to exceed £6.7 billion by 2024 and is fast becoming an essential part of many organisations’ workplace strategy.
Put simply, it provides a secure, online workspace for individuals from inside and outside an organisation to collaborate with each other.
In this blog post, we’re going to explain the reasons why using collaboration software can help you to win at remote project management.
Increased security when sharing files
With 269 billion emails sent daily, there is no denying that this is still the most popular form of communication.
But is it the safest way to share documents that contains sensitive material? The answer is a resounding no.
The data backs this up. One survey has suggested that the number of ransomware attacks targeting companies increased threefold from January 2016 to September 2016, affecting one in every five businesses worldwide.
So how does collaboration software reduce this risk? Leading providers regularly have their security credentials independently tested to the satisfaction of Government departments, local authorities and major enterprises. Most email systems have not had the same level of scrutiny.
Also unlike an email, which can get forwarded to anyone, you get control over who can see, upload, modify and delete your content. Only those that you have invited into your online workspace can do this. In fact, you can take this even further by only allowing certain people or groups of people to see certain content.
Work anytime, anywhere
The standard 9 to 5 in the office is fast becoming obsolete. It is clear that people want to have more control over when and where they work.
Employees and employers both seem to agree on this. One survey has stated that 67% of employees wished that they were offered flexible working while another has found that flexible working is set to become the main way of working for 70% of organisations by 2020.
Collaboration software can help facilitate flexible working. Most vendors should allow you, your team members and stakeholders to access your online workspace anytime, anywhere as long as they can access a web browser and have an internet connection.
There are numerous reasons why this is advantageous. For example, project meetings can now take place at any time remotely using in-built web conferencing, rather than when certain people can make it into the office. This leads to increased efficiency, as people spend more time working than travelling to meetings.
Edit documents together – in real time!
Working on documents with team members in the office is usually simple. You arrange a time to meet up and go through changes together.
But how does this play out when working remotely? Email is usually the way. Countless emails flying back and forth with numerous versions of documents. This makes it nearly impossible to know which document is the correct version and who has made changes.
When it comes to overcoming these issues, online collaboration is a game changer. Unlike email, it allows your team to edit just one version of a document. Changes are fully audited so you can see who has changed what and to avoid multiple people editing at the same time, you can even ‘lock’ the document.
That’s not all. Once changes have been made to the document, you can then ask for a comment or approval from one or more of your team members. Rather than having them scattered across various meetings, phone calls and emails, they are all listed in one place – in your online workspace.
Choosing the best online collaboration software for your business
It can be confusing trying to choose which software is right for your organisation. To help you, we have created a guide that contains the ten most important questions that you should be asking a supplier. Click below to receive your copy via email.