Many organizations are planning and budgeting for 2021 technology needs. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, organizations were working on technology solutions to help their people and their customers or clients collaborate efficiently. The pandemic has caused a heightened focus on collaborative technology. In this article, we will share some thoughts about collaborative technology and invite you to answer some questions about how your organization is addressing the challenges of working efficiently in today’s business realities.

Collaborative meeting solutions that function well can dramatically increase efficiency. These solutions should work regardless of team members’ location (home or office), type of device being used (computers, tablets, or phones), and whether the communication is by voice, video, messaging, or content sharing. Webex Meetings and Teams, Microsoft Teams, and Zoom are examples of now widely-used collaborative technology.

Here are some questions you might ask yourself:

  • Do your team members and clients or customers find your collaborative technology easy to use and effective in doing business?
  • Is the quality of audio, visual, and screen sharing sufficient to meet the needs of your organization?
  • Is the performance of your systems consistently good?
  • Are your systems secure from hackers?
  • Are you able to take notes and “whiteboard” ideas for multiple users, and are these notes readily accessible later?

If your current phone system does not support modern collaboration solutions, you may need to modernize your calling platform, either by replacing your on-premise equipment or by migrating to the cloud. In either case, it is very important to make sure your meeting, messaging, and calling solutions are integrated.

In the pandemic-caused rush to increase the productivity of remote workers, many organizations have relaxed controls on purchasing, and vendors have lowered the burden on acquiring their collaboration solutions. This has led to users acquiring disparate technologies overly focused on immediate needs, rather than being part of a longer-term organization-wide strategy. Including IT professionals in the planning and budgeting processes is important in maximizing the return on your technology investments and protecting your systems’ security.

Want to learn more about collaborative solutions?

IT Infrastructure Services Associate Director

The modern way to communicate

This article was originally published in News & Views (Dean Dorton’s quarterly newsletter).

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