If you still associate the phrase "Go, Team, Go" with high school cheer squads, you haven't spent much time in the digital workplace. Today, teamwork and its siblings — enterprise social collaboration and social software — are the cornerstones of productivity.
While many discussions about the state of enterprise collaboration focus on the relative virtues of tools like Slack, HipChat and Yammer, new research from Bitrix24 identified eight significant collaboration trends. The study was based on a survey of 1,295 companies as well an analysis of more than a million Bitrix24 corporate accounts.
Keep in mind that Bitrix24 is a collaboration vendor itself. It offers a collaborative suite that connects CRM, instant messaging, collaboration and task management into one package.
It is an initiative of four-year-old Alexandria, Va.-based Bitrix Inc., a company owned and managed by its founders: CEO Sergey Rizhikov; President Dmitry Valyanov; VPs
Alexey Sidorenko and Vadim Dumbravanu; and CTO Yury Tushinsky.
CMO Dimitry Davydov told CMSWire the survey queried Bitrix’s customer base and acknowledged the responses are from those who already deploy Bitrix24’s social collaboration, communication and management tools.
“Bitrix24 is unique," he said. "We don’t think there is a single best way to collaborate.
"Yammer was really popular three to four years ago and [Microsoft] pushed the idea that enterprise social networking was the best way to collaborate. Today, there is Slack with its contextual chat model and there are things like Asana, which enables everyone to collaborate on tasks and projects. We offer our own tools that are like Slack, Asna and Yammer, all in an integrated, single place.”
Top Collaboration Trends
So what did the Bitrix24 survey discover?
IT Companies Love to Collaborate
Among survey respondents, IT companies represent the biggest group of collaboration software users (28 percent), followed by consulting (16 percent) and marketing and advertising firms (16 percent).
There's a Small Team Focus
The vast majority of collaboration tools are used by small teams (2-10 people).
Tools Connect Remote Workers
Most companies that use collaboration tools have at least one remote employee, although this is growing rapidly.
One third of all users report that they access tools from both home and office. Almost half of all users (48%) state they collaborate from any place that has internet access.
Collaboration is Still in its Infancy
Although collaboration software has existed for more than two decades, the vast majority of respondents have used their current tools for less than two years.
Multiple Collaboration Tools
Only 22 percent of survey respondents stated that every single employee uses the same collaboration software in their companies.
Price Limits Collaboration Options
One third of respondents chose their current solution because it was free (31 percent) or priced "affordably" (11 percent).
Collaboration Goes Beyond Chat
The most popular collaboration tools are actually tasks, projects and workgroups. Online documents and shared calendars are widely used collaboration tools.
Davytov expects the next step in enterprise collaboration is artificial intelligence. “There is a lot of potential in artificial intelligence, not only in bots, but in other ways too as the bots are limited in chats. Using artificial intelligence users will you will get suggestions and reminders about things to do with a lot of routine things that we do now manually ending up automated,” he said.