According to new statistics, 60% of the working population in the UK are now working from home. Perhaps unsurprisingly, many are set to continue working remotely for the foreseeable future. For those business that had already implemented a robust cloud infrastructure, the switch to remote working as seamless when government recommendations to work from home came into force.
For those businesses that hadn’t yet moved to cloud computing, the process of moving to remote working was one that was difficult to navigate, causing setbacks. This likely caused disruption and, as a result, there was a widespread realisation that a comprehensive cloud computing network is critical to business continuity.
Some months on, teams are expected to perform at the same level, regardless of where they are working. By picking the right collaboration tools, you can help each person in your business to contribute with great teamwork and communication.
How does cloud computing help team collaboration?
Collaboration doesn’t just mean finding ways for your workforce to work on tasks together.
Collaboration means using software and platforms that empower team communication. In turn that enforces a culture of connectedness, enabling team spirit to thrive – preventing team members from working in silo or productivity declining.
By choosing the right software, leaders can ensure that everyone in the business:
- Is working towards a shared vision or goal
- Understands their responsibilities and roles relating to tasks
- Is given complete transparency over work and projects in which they are involved
- Is provided with the opportunity to help the business innovate with the contribution of new ideas
Cloud computing enables these things to happen in real-time, regardless of where each team member is working from. It provides them with the means to continue being productive, proactive and forward-thinking without encountering technological barriers that stall progress.
Below we will outline some of the tools that can help every business open up various avenues for communication, laying the foundation for collaboration.
Office 365, or Microsoft 365, is an extremely popular line of cloud-based subscription products.
Millions of businesses rely on the features of Office 365 to communicate, collaborate, create documents and manage multiple aspects of their business.
As well as including the core Microsoft applications such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Office Outlook, the flexible model can also offer the additional applications that are suited to the needs of your organisation.
Learn more about Office 365 solutions for your business, here: Office 365
There are several packages available when choosing the licence for your business; we provide more insight into some of these applications, below
With its primary function to facilitate and promote productivity, Microsoft Teams successfully creates a digital workspace where team members can send instant messages, make calls, video chat and share files – increasing the collaborative capability of a business.
Simple to use, Microsoft Teams gives a one-pane view of who is available and who is busy, allowing for better decision making when it comes to the most appropriate way of contacting a team member. It also integrates with individuals Outlook calendars, letting individuals pick meeting times that are suitable for all involved, rather than wait for everyone to weigh-in on the most convenient times.
Now featuring a sleek, new interface – Microsoft SharePoint Online is a cloud-based, collaborative document management and storage system.
As well as being used to improve internal comms and efficiency, its external sharing capability also means it helps enhance outward collaboration too.
With Microsoft SharePoint, you can easily create, manage and share documents, and protect data and document access using user-access permissions.
Multiple team members can edit, communicate and collaborate on documents in real-time, creating a more efficient environment. Documents do not have to be sent back and forth to be edited or revisited multiple times, instead of being worked on as a project, getting thing right, the first time. Organisations can also use Microsoft Teams within SharePoint too.
The intuitive nature of Office 365 software means that when using Microsoft Outlook to send documents as attachments, it presents you with the most recent documents that have been worked on – further increasing efficiency, reducing time spent searching through folders.
Yammer is a social network for businesses, helping employees to connect and communicate. It can also enable employers to share important information, announcements and company news across departments.
The best way to think of Yammer is like a cloud-based company message board. It helps to build trust company-wide, whilst also serving as a space for leaders and employees to celebrate one another, keeping company culture alive and team spirit at the forefront of the organisation.
Microsoft Project is a flexible project management tool that assists businesses in organising and managing tasks through planning, scheduling, communication, documentation and evaluation.
Using Microsoft Project, teams can plan and delegate work against calendars and workflows, create bespoke dashboards and subfolders, assign tasks to team members and collaborate in real-time.
Using this platform, teams can involve a large number of individuals in projects all working in real-time while experiencing enhanced communication and collaboration. The project view means that’s teams can view and work on projects concurrently, no matter their location.
Although the tools discussed in this blog are critical to improving the success of your businesses ability to collaborate, communicate and improve efficiency, it’s just a snapshot into all of the applications that are available through the Office365 suite.