A study by the International Workplace group said that every week, 70% of employees are working at least one day a week somewhere other than the office. With this growing trend of workplaces becoming more flexible and dispersed, collaboration on projects becomes increasingly tricky. The timely delivery of a project on budget and having reached the end goal is threatened by poor communication. 

How do you bring together and empower teams to work together remotely and effectively in a digital environment? 

 

You may be considering an Online Chat solution. Slack, Skype, LiveChat, or Zendesk are proving to be popular tools in the market. 

Chat allows your organization to work closer together and more effectively with other teams. Chat is intended for any communication, live Chat, sharing of files and voice and video calls. It creates a real-time in-person feel between team members and inspires collaborative conversations.

 

chat bubbles - Is chat or community software better for your business?

Whenever possible, Chat is an email alternative. Chat works well in environments where teams are known, people know exactly who to contact and files can be shared easily. Chat can help people talk together in single, group chats, or calls. The benefits of Chat are: 

  • Less email
  • Group discussions are easier to follow than long email threads
  • Instant answers to quick fact-checking questions that remove roadblocks in workflows 
  • More collaboration between team members

As a project manager, excellent communication is key to your successful project, but is a chat tool the right tool to pull your team together?

The #9 most common problems with Chat tools

If you are trying to improve internal communication and are thinking of using Chat as a workable solution, you need to be aware of these setbacks.  

  1. Onboarding is challenging. A new tool comes with a steep learning curve. If people encounter difficulties early on, adoption rates will below.
  2.  Everyone needs to use the tool, or it's not worth it. All in participation is required from the team. You can't start a strategic discussion if not everyone is using the tool.
  3. Security and data leaks are a problem. Some chats are vulnerable to data leaks and are easy targets for hackers. Your personal and business information can easily be made public.
  4. Privacy becomes a real issue. Chat's that you think are private, are not and are easily shared with others. 
  5. Chatting uses informal language that can sometimes lead to misunderstandings, become harmful and damaging. 
  6. The per-user cost can be very high. While it seems like a useful tool, the per person cost can add up! It is not sustainable for some businesses. 
  7. Programs are glitchy and buggy. Notifications get missed, chats are not sent, important messages are lost. 
  8. Constant interruption can become distracting and annoying, causing disengagement and users to log out.
  9. The backlog of unread messages is unclear if you have been offline for a while.

 

two people chatting on their laptops

Community Software is more than just 'Chat'

Instead of limiting your organization to a chat tool, expand the possibilities with Community Software, a productive digital environment where your organization can thrive. A social intranet is an internal website that helps your employees stay connected and engaged with your business. Essentially is a digital workspace that is fully integrated with your business tools and helps your employees get the job done! 

Within a social intranet, employees can contribute to business-wide discussions, communicate ideas to their teams, search easily among content and be able to collaborate easily with other colleagues.

What does Community Software give you that Chat doesn't? 

  • Onboarding is seamless 
  • Security features are excellent
  • Promotes connectivity and ideas 
  • Adoption rates are high 
  • Affordable per-user cost 

Onboarding is easy

Reduce spending your time individually emailing employees and get your people empowering each other. Community Software connects organizations and employees anywhere in the world, from any device. Community software is ideal for collaboration and effective communication. Talk, share ideas and train employees from a single place.

It is secure 

Community software can offer a safe online environment. It is unparalleled by any other communication software on the market for its privacy and security features; you can be assured your data is safe.

Connects your team and their ideas

Improve areas of your business by bringing people together. Capture the creativity of your members and bring them to live like real-world solutions. It supports every step of ideation: from the collection of ideas to implementation.

To chat or not to chat?

Instant messaging can be a powerful tool when rolled out across teams. An investment in Chat only is probably not the best solution and will not solve all of the problems you are experiencing. 

Online communities are robust and responsive spaces that help you achieve your business goals. With community software, you can connect staff, employees and stakeholders, empowering them to complete your projects. With this collaboration software, you can listen and react to your community and create meaningful connections. 

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