4 Key Software Tools to Improve your Interdepartmental Communication
So, you’re convinced that having a cohesive internal communications plan is crucial to growing a successful company. You realize its power to engage your workforce (remote or otherwise), lead to improved performance, client satisfaction, and ultimately, better results. While it may seem straightforward to have a streamlined process in place, executing an internal communications strategy can be a complex challenge even for well-established companies.
Whether you’re a new company looking for platforms to help you communicate more quickly and effectively, or an established organization that is ready to expand internationally and wants to unify your team scattered across different parts of the globe, using cloud software is an efficient and cost-effective way to promote internal communications. From recording and sharing training demos to holding meetings and videoconferences online, you’ll be amazed at just how much you can get done in ‘the cloud’ - at a fraction of the cost you’d spend otherwise. This frees up precious time and resources which can be put to better use, perhaps to grow and nurture your client and customer base.
Regardless of your company’s size or the stage of growth you’re in, here are 4 great cloud software tools and some of their key benefits:
Manage projects - Wrike is a project management platform that allows you to track, manage and coordinate tasks. Projects can be broken down into folders, tasks and activities, helping project managers gain a clear visibility of the overall picture as well as zoom in on the minor details. You can juggle multiple projects, set deadlines and track progress ensuring that all team members are on the same page.
Engage your team - It promotes collaboration by allowing you to view, comment and edit documents in real-time. You can communicate with your team by using the @ feature to alert members of edits, new documents or to ask for updates. You can even synchronize tasks into calendars such as Google, Outlook and iCal, to help you keep track of project milestones and deadlines. This can help your remote workforce to stay on top of various projects and schedules even if your employees are working across different timezones.
Prioritize work - When an organization is dealing with many complex projects with competing deadlines, priorities can often become muddled and unclear. Wrike can help your team cut back on unnecessary admin by prioritizing work especially for teams overburdened with endless meetings and emails. Using Wrike’s forms, organizations can reduce time spent on projects, minimize miscommunication and ensure progress is visible to all involved.
Break down boundaries - RingCentral is a cloud-based communications platform that allows your team to stay connected on a single network no matter the location. Users can host and join video conferences, business meetings, events, interviews and demos without having to meet up physically. It drastically reduces setup costs including office resources, hardware and software, training and maintenance, which means your company’s time and resources can be allocated elsewhere.
Easy access - It allows users to easily migrate from their cloud or landline system, and integrate into their system of choice, be it Salesforce, Microsoft, Google, Dropbox or others. It provides a range of communication options (from internet faxes and SMSs to mobile and desktop apps) that can be accessed from devices such as deskphones, laptops, tablets, PCs or mobiles, providing a great deal of flexibility and value for money.
A connected team - RingCentral can help your team communicate and be productive even when they work in different time zones. For instance, it allows you to record training calls and demos and share them later with team members who are not present at the time. This is a resourceful way to engage your team and saves money in terms of training costs.
Sales and marketing data in one place - All of your sales and marketing data can be viewed in one place, thanks to HubSpot’s platform. From tracking new leads to sharing information in your sales funnel, having all the data in one places make it easy for marketing and sales departments to be aligned, and also allows them to easily generate reports and share data in real time with senior board and management members.
Record and share calls - Customer or prospect calls can be tracked and recorded in real time allowing your sales or support teams to review their own performances and improve their messaging. These calls can also be shared with the rest of the team for training purposes. In addition, HubSpot can help with your recruitment strategy by tracking calls with candidates, and these recorded calls can be passed onto the HR manager, department director, COO or CEO at different stages of the recruitment funnel, ensuring a smoother hiring process.
Train your team - A wealth of training materials including blogs, videos, online exams and phone call simulations are available to not only train your sales team but also to be shared with other departments. In addition, HubSpot tracks every interaction you have with clients and prospects through its analytics system which shows you data such as open, click and conversion rates, as well as the platforms that people are using to find you, ensuring the entire team is brought up to speed on the latest campaigns.
Google has a series of cloud-based apps (Gmail, Calendar, Google +, Hangouts, Google Drive etc.) which are particularly useful to new and growing businesses because of how simple they are to navigate and use.
Communicate - You can contact colleagues via Gmail or Google+ and organize meetings and video conferences over Hangouts. With an upgrade, you can have your own business email with a unique domain name. Furthermore, a shared calendar allows you to view your team members’ schedules so you can easily organize meetings via automatic email invitations.
Collaborate - You can view, manage and store all your documents (e.g. PDFs, word docs, videos etc.) in one place - Google Drive. You can share and edit documents, presentations, spreadsheets, forms and drawings, and invite multiple users at different levels in your organization to view and comment on your work in real time. These can be viewed over any device, so you can access everything on the go by simply signing into your Google account.
This is only the tip of the iceberg! New and continually evolving developments in cloud software have dramatically improved the potential to work more efficiently and meet deadlines as it allows colleagues to be aligned and connected in real time without the need to meet in person.