Many companies, especially startups, are constantly trying to figure out the best way to communicate with co-workers who either right next to them or across the country. Either way today you can find tons of alternatives, but which one is the best fit for what your corporate needs are. By finding just the right way of communication you can optimize communication including reducing drastically unnecessary emails. The following are some of the option out there, and the ones that are being used by entrepreneurs all across the country.
The first one we are going to take a look at is HipChat. It has been around since 2010, when Chris Rivers, Garret Heaton and Pete Curley founded it, as well as other apps like HipCal and Plaxo Pulse. Even though it was later acquired by Atlassian in 2012, it still has all the main features its founders instilled in it. HipChat is a web service for internal or private chat and IMs. It also has one-to-one and group or topic chat, as well as cloud-based file storage, video calling, searchable message history and inline image viewing. You can use HipChat on your desktop or laptop on any of the three major operating system, and not to mention Android and iOS devices. It runs on a freemium model that will allow additional features where you have to pay $2.00 a month. As of 2014 it is said that more than 60 messages are sent per second and it is only on the rise. With this app, you can build functional rooms and automate several activities to ensure the communication on your team is effective, even the smallest of companies.
Slack, besides having tons of features that lets you upload links and files, keep track of conversations and is very easy to learn. Some companies have been known to switch to Slack and are thrilled with the change. You can also easily search for anything you like. Additionally, you can also create a Google Hangout from within the chat rooms. This is a great feature that lets you get closer with your team. Some companies have been known to use it for training, internal projects, brainstorming and in general keeping track of progress and performance.
Campfire is yet another alternative, that will give your operation even more security by giving the option of generating password-protected group chats. Campfire has an excellent suite of add-ons and extras that allow you and your company to personalize and customize it as much as possible. You can use it for customer service, development and design.
Most apps are perfect for internal communication, while Basecamp can help not only with communication between staff members, but also their customers. With this project management app, it is easy for companies to keep track of the what’s going on in each of the projects, while keeping everyone in the loop, along with all of the client’s information updated. Basecamp is quite easy to use and it bridges the gap between your employees and clienteles.
Although Redbooth, is considered to be more a task tracking application, it integrated a chat software that opens the door to many companies using it to not only keep track of the activities in the company, but also allowing communication between all of the teams involved in the projects. Its features help companies maximize productivity by allowing employees to focus on the tasks at hand concentrating on assigning, keeping track and chatting about those tasks.
By tying together each of the tasks to particular project, which is exactly what Wrike does. You can share documents, collaborate and discuss projects and tasks easily. By setting clear goals, Wrike allows you to prioritize and align expectations on your team. This app not only helps increase performance, but creates a transparent level of communication that stimulates accountability on the team. You can easily message other team members and tag the particular task or project, so that you can share information with its context and make the communication more effective than ever.
Kato.im, is another one that stands out when it comes to internal communications. It can easily integrate with GitHub and other services that can provide context and previous conversations on the particular topic. Offering one simple platform with the capacity of using all of the task and project management tools for your company.
Finally, a very popular app in companies these days is Microsoft Lync, which is one of the few that integrates so many synchronous and asynchronous communication tools into one all-comprehensive one. It blends video, phone, IMs and collaborative work spaces, in a way that will let all of your employees increase their productivity. This app has actually recently been upgraded to Skype for Business, allowing all of the tools for video conferencing from Skype to become the new chat for Microsoft Lync. With this tool you can keep communication up to date independent of the size of your company. Big or small, the most important thing at the end of the day is to choose a platform that adjusts itself to your company’s needs and allows you to increase productivity and optimize communication.