An essential mission of every business is to increase profit via customer satisfaction improvement. But could it be considered as a simple task? Obviously, it couldn’t.
10 January 2013 2
Online Collaboration – A Competitive Advantage for Small Business and Start-ups
Teamwork is essential in any workplace. It’s evolving with Internet availability and the emergence of online collaboration. There are many advantages it provides businesses, especially small businesses and startups that have limited resources. With online collaboration, smaller businesses and startups can gain a competitive advantage over similar businesses and benefit in many ways. Some of the ways that they can benefit from the online collaboration include the following.
Saves time and money
Small businesses and startups do not have enough financial resources to hire and relocate specialists. Some of the best expertise may be found in a different part of the world and relocating and compensating them may be costly. It is cheaper to hire and work with them online. With online collaboration, small businesses can hire or outsource a team of experts from different parts of the world and bring them together on one online platform.
It also reduces costs when it comes to hiring people to work in various parts of the world. For instance, if several projects are being implemented in different areas, a business will need a project manager for each of those regions. With online collaboration, it is possible to have one project manager for managing multiple projects.
Improved team communication
Because small businesses and startups are looking for ways to reduce costs, it’s good for them to have some part of their employees working from home. In this case, they don’t need to rent a big office to accommodate all their employees. Instead, they can continue working as a team with online collaboration tools, for example, have shared dashboards. Many dashboard tools have implemented Kanban boards, because of the simplicity and efficiency of the Kanban method.
Kanbanchi is one of such tools that supports the Kanban method entirely.
With online tools, communication between employees is greatly enhanced. One may argue that Skype and email may work. These do not have features that can help share project details for every team member in an efficient manner. Together with collaboration tools, they make online collaboration more effective. some of the features that email and skype lack are task tracker, reportings or bug tracker.
Good for handling emergencies
Online collaboration is not only meant for remote working, companies that do not hire freelancers could benefit too. There may arise an emergency when employees are not at the office, and their coordination is needed. Rather than have to call them to come to the office, which is time-consuming, it is better to get them to collaborate online. There are situations when an employee may go to another country or is out of the office attending other businesses such as meeting a client, without an online collaboration tool, work can stop until the employee returns to the office. With online collaboration, especially for smaller businesses that do not have extra resources to hire additional people to fill in, work can be continued and all operations may be running. Any delay will make other businesses gain an advantage over them.
Just as the case with the project manager using an online collaboration tool to manage several projects and saving the company’s money, with online collaboration, there is no need to employ a dedicated accountant. Employees that are not required on a full-time basis can be hired on an hourly basis. This is a great way for small business and startups to reduce costs.
Online collaboration can be very beneficial for small businesses and startups as it offers ways for them to reduce costs and hire experts from various parts of the world. They can then focus remaining resources on competing against their competitors. Of course, it’s not enough for successful management, but it’s a good starting point.
If you want to try online collaboration for your team, you may start with Kanbanchi, because it’s free, easy to use, has an intuitive interface and is fully integrated with Google Drive.