If your want your business to run at maximum efficiency, then building collaboration software into your software stack is key to unlocking the potential of your teams.
There are various levels of collaboration software though, in that some are designed to fulfill certain functions, whereas others are designed to be used as a hub for your business processes to be built around.
In this post we’ll be looking at the latter: fully-featured collaboration software tools that can change the way your business operates for the better by coordinating your staff (and even your clients!) to make sure everyone is on the same page and working towards a common goal.
We’ve highlighted three excellent collaboration software tools with slightly different use-cases so you can find the right software tool for your business.
And as always, all our recommendations are based on ratings and testimonies from our Serchen community of real-world users, so you can be confident that these collaboration software solutions really work.
Free trial available
Interfacing brings your business a digital quality management system that helps digitize your processes and streamline operations, but that’s a lot of vague terminology, so let’s dig into what it means.
Interfacing operates as a BPM, a business process management software tool, designed for larger companies to automate tasks and model processes, data and outcomes.
Think of it as a way of a tool for building repetitive workflows with assigned tasks, timescales and rules, with data being routed to the correct places it needs to go along the way.
Interfacing’s system builds upon this principle by digitizing your operating procedures and keeping them in one place in the cloud for easy access and updating on the go, meaning you have one source of truth for your procedures, and thus a standardized practice.
This also creates a digital twin—a digital mirror of your business that allows for experimentation and changes to see how your efficiency is improved and compliance affected.
Changes to procedure are flagged, so reviews of process can be monitored and their effects ascertAIned, and with automated impact assessments, you can gain insights into downstream implications, and with AI modelling to determine impact patterns, you can reduce the risk of change to your business.
And when it comes to collaboration, your workforce no longer has to understand an entire procedure; with targeted content, you can make sure they have everything they need to get on with their role and the tasks at hand. With online content resources like forms, videos and images, you can ensure they know the latest procedure and how to implement it.
Plus, your employees gain access to discussion forums for collaborating on tasks, and with feedback and vote collection, you can see which processes suit your teams the best.
Digitization of procedure — keep track of all your procedures with Interfacing’s modeling tools, centralizing the process across your business and updating it in real-time when changes are made
Process analysis — use various reporting and prediction tools to understand the impact of your procedures and any changes you make to risk and efficiency down the road
Collaboration — use discussion forums, voting and feedback to understand your workforce and help guide them in the right direction through teamwork
What our community says about Interfacing:
Fanny — “The software is very user–friendly and simple to use and personalize. It simplifies the documentation of complete processes (roles and responsibilities, procedures, KPIs, controls, documents, tools, etc.) The connections between the different data items allow for simple process maintenance. The software manages the level of access per user. It enables the business to standardize its process documentation. The business can share the published processes to guide operations with its employees while the process can continue to evolve in its draft form, all within the same software. Interfacing is very responsive to its clients’ needs and is constantly evolving to answer their needs.”
Chad — “The central repository and web-based access made it very easy to collaboratively model, review and approve our software development process. I’ve worked with Visio and other process management applications and the depth of functionality and ease of use is not comparable with that of EPC.”
Alain — “Outstanding BPM features at affordable price Pros: Ease-of-use, powerful tool, comprehensive modules & features, simple navigation, multilingual support, KPI and dashboard integration, LEAN analysis, fast cloud application, in–depth Risks & Controls, great collaboration features, easy learning.
Price From: $83 per month (free trial available)
Most collaboration software focuses on internal communication, but for businesses that need to collaborate with people and organizations outside of the company, a client portal is required.
Clinked brings your business a white-label (I.e. it can be completely customized to reflect your branding) solution to bring in and engage your clients through online collaboration, while still maintaining all the key internal collaboration features you need to ensure teams are working well together.
For client-facing businesses, keeping your clients abreast of how projects are developing is a great way to add value to your product, and by investing in a client/partner portal, you can manage the information you share with your clients to include workflows, documents, communications and more.
But you’ll also need powerful internal collaboration tools, and Clinked provides them in spades.
With a centralized file database, users can upload documents to the cloud from wherever they are, and preview, annotate and approve files without having to download them. Users can also be notified of new files with push and email notifications, and all your documents are protected by bank-grade security for your peace of mind.
And with a host of dedicated collaboration tools, including task management, group events calendars and instant audit trails, you can keep your workforce concentrated on what needs to be done, with a paper trail of all the tasks that have been completed.
Client/Partner portal — bring your clients and business partners into the fold using the Clinked portal system to share important information and enable collaboration beyond the boundaries of your own business. With the ability to share files and workflows, as well as enable document editing and approvals from your clients, you can both be kept up-to-date on the latest developments and eliminate the need for time-wasting back-and-forths
White-label — Clinked brings you the platform, but you brand it to reflect your business. Create customized pages and impress your workers and clients with how your portal looks
Centralized file sharing — bring all of your documents and files together to create one source of truth, and allow your employees and clients to edit, preview, approve and annotate documents in the cloud without having to download and then reupload them
Project management — organize your tasks and workflows online to encourage collaboration, and make sure everyone’s on the same page with a shared events calendar and notifications on your activities
What our community says about Clinked:
Rachel — “No words could describe my satisfaction. Clinked always helps me with the robust digital file management, super–fast file sharing, hassle-free communication and other various help and support. Coming to its cost, this incomparable and professional software is available at lower prices, so it can easily be hired for personal or business needs. Overall working with the same is lots of fun!!! Highly Recommended!”
Janette — “We just love Clinked because it’s easy to use and saves us a lot of time and effort. Clinked offers an array of features via which we can easily manage all the work as well as share an online workspace. It’s one of the finest ways to ensure that everybody related to our workplace can access the files and stay in the loop anytime and from anywhere. There is nothing which we look for more as it offers everything for making our office work easier and smoother.”
Lala — “This software is absolutely spectacular for collaboration! It helps my team members and I stay on the same page, remain productive and deliver on tight deadlines. The shared calendar and the ability to use the global task manager tool to designate tasks to individual team members are tremendous features! When it comes to value coupled with functionality, Clinked is the best project management tool out there!”
Jira, Trello and Confluence by Atlassian
Price From: Free! (Free trials for paid products available)
Atlassian has a suite of excellent collaborative project management tools to its name — Jira are industry leaders in their own right, but there are fantastic other tools Atlassian’s made to improve your collaborative workflow.
Firstly, let’s look at Trello and Jira; it can be difficult to understand which tool is right for you, as they seem to perform similar functions. However, each tool has a preferred use case where it shines, and it’s possible to even use them in concert if your work process allows it.
Trello is the more simple to use tool, with its focus being on presenting a clear workflow for your team to follow. By using Kanban boards, you can easily see which jobs are being worked on by who, and which tasks will need to be completed in the future.
With customizable lists and intuitive features designed to keep your team in the loop about who’s working on what, you can set up quick workflows for your core processes and see them updated in real-time. You can also use custom layouts for other functions, such as brainstorming, giving you some extra utility from Trello.
Jira is designed for projects where custom steps need to be added to the workflow all the time. The classic case for Jira is software development, but any project that involves tweaking and granular levels of iterative development can benefit from Jira’s more complex workflow.
Featuring Scrum, Kanban and sprint boards, Jira gives businesses a finer control over their projects, at the cost of longer onboarding time. For teams that benefit from the increased customization Jira brings, choosing it over Trello is a no-brainer, but Trello provides a simpler workflow more applicable to most teams.
Lastly, Confluence is a team workspace built for collaboration, used by businesses as a central source of truth. With templates for common activities and reporting, you can quickly put together collaborative tasks for your teams to work on simultaneously, and include notes, reference materials and other content to keep them engaged.
You can even integrate your Jira and Trello boards within Confluence, for easy access for your teams, as well as many other third-party apps, such as common communications tools like Slack and Zoom. Think of Confluence as the hub of your teams, and Trello and Jira as specific tools for managing your team projects together.
Trello — easy-to-understand and fully customizable Kanban-based project management software, designed to get your team working together and in sync to hit your targets and be as efficient as possible. Easy to implement across almost every team thanks to its clear layout, quick onboarding, and Kanban management
Jira — a collaborative project management tool with more granular control than Trello, for project workflows that need frequent updating and iterative development. Used by lots of software development teams, it’s perfect for taking more control of your project management process by using Kanban boards, Scrum and sprint templates
Confluence — the hub of your collaboration efforts. Bring all your workforce together into one source of truth, ensuring all your information is up-to-date and accessible to all. With simple collaborative workspaces to record meeting notes, brainstorming activities and more, as well as conversation inspiring social messaging, you can keep your teams happy and engaged to get the most out of their expertise
What our community says about Atlassian:
Richard — “Fantastic user interface, easy to use and share. And works great on tablets/phones. Great free level, better corp/enterprise features. Use it for both work and home projects!”
Choosing the Right Comprehensive Collaboration Software For Your Business
Ultimately, the software that works best for you is the one that fits best with your current business practice.
Interfacing works best for large companies looking to create standardized processes for their workforce, with feedback and suggestions about how those processes can improve.
Clinked suits businesses that need open communications with their clients and partners, who want to add value and trust to their relationships with transparency of process, while also speeding up documentation, approval, and with some project management tools to help coordinate projects both internally and externally.
The Atlassian suite of tools, Trello, Jira and Confluence, work best for businesses that are looking for detailed internal project oversight, team coordination and communications tools to make teamwork a breeze and keep tasks managed.