Communication · Collaboration

What tools are you using to communicate in work groups?

Ami Ben-David CEO at Workgroup

April 19th, 2016

I'm interested in what tools you use to communicate between people working together on a task, both inside and outside an organic team or company.

John Anderson

April 19th, 2016

Slack works great.  It's fun to use and helps people stay connected, even when working on multiple projects, or multiple Slack teams.

Sedef Onder Managing Partner + Strategist, Clear Inc.

April 19th, 2016

Basecamp and webex enable sharing of files / documents / links; real-time instant messaging communication; desktop sharing by team members during meetings and calls; audio- and visual-recordings of calls/meetings for those who missed and want to listen in after, and more.

Our teams have been pretty happy with these and nearly always on the same page.

Aaron Davis Product Marketing Manager at Igloo Software

April 27th, 2016

Full disclosure - I work for Igloo.

Within our platform we integrate with Slack, Office 365, Salesforce Chatter, Skype for Business, to name a few. For growing organizations, it's really important to balance the need for teams to work with the tools that make them the most productive with the need to reign in fragmentation of hundreds of cloud solutions that causes operational complexity as you grow. One thing that's been effective for us and that we continue to experiment with is the idea of a personal dashboard. Employees here are encouraged to build a personal dashboard around the services that they want to use. Kind of like a command and control center for your day. 

For example, as a member of the marketing team, I need to interact with the sales, product, development, customer success, and support.  So I built out a dashboard that includes the marketing Slack channel, the sales Chatter feeds, and support's Zendesk queue to name a few. As we grow and scale, we are looking to solve the fragmentation of services/tools across groups by integrating them in a meaningful way. For now, the dashboard concept - a command and control center for  helps me manage my day more effectively and gives me a bit of a respite from inbox hell. 

Ami Ben-David CEO at Workgroup

April 20th, 2016

Matt, thanks for the detailed feedback, but it's even simpler than what you describe.

You log-in with your email address, which is your user identity. From there on, you have all your workgroups available forever on the app/website.

When you create a new workgroup and invite someone, they get a link by email.

When they click the link, they go directly to the workgroup, (because having access to the link - proves their email identity). One click - they're in.

So zero setup, but with a permanent and secure identity, and all your workgroups are always available to you - with full history, search, file uploads etc.

It's really like a very very simple to use Slack, with no setups or team limitation.

Stephen Lynch Head of Strategy & Consulting at RESULTS.com, Award Winning Author, Speaker, Strategic Planning Facilitator

April 26th, 2016

Disclosure - I work for RESULTS.com

We used to use Slack but we got tired of having information in multiple places and decided to build that functionality into our management dashboard software. That way employees can not only have group and individual communications (as you can with any messaging tool), we can now have conversations about specific goals: e.g. conversations about a specific project or task, or conversations about a specific metric / KPI.

We also track all the conversations that occur in virtual meetings - as part of the agenda and record of what was discussed and decided

Having a history of all these conversations creates an audit trail to track the quality of decisions made at every level and their impact on each person's goals.

Malcolm Baker Business Consultant at Gopha

April 25th, 2016

We use Slack for general stuff and Gopha (www.getgopha.com) for the more official, one way provision and curation of info to the team.

Wendy Robertson Innovation Strategy and Customer Development

April 20th, 2016

Slack for sure. It provides the kind of encouragement people need to share without being overly formal with great results in terms of organizational memory and communication. The big hurdle is trusting it and not doubling up in other channels like email. 

Matt Tabin Co-founder 2amigOS! Consulting Group, CTO at Zaahah

April 20th, 2016

For our project communication tools we prefer using Assembla in combination with HipChat, although we have explored moving to Slack. Rather than get into a long discussion on which chat app is better, I would say that both work quite well for daily team interactions. However, when it comes to getting outside people to use the chat apps it becomes another story. 

We find that it's hard to keep clients paying attention to apps like HipChat, Slack or even Skype. Especially enterprise level clients. Either there is a corporate policy disallowing there use, or they are already using something else company wide and don't want another app running and pinging them. Plus, you'll find people that just constantly forget to open the app, as you cannot enforce policy on clients (yes, there are email notifications in these apps, but it defeats the purpose of a chat app).  

This is why we use Assembla, too. Not only is it actually a great project management tool, but it also allows us to be more transparent with the client. They are able to see what features are currently in progress and take part in discussions on the actual tickets. The client themselves can be pinged by the developer working the ticket for any additional information needs, or to just make sure the task is clear. We have them interact with our QA people to ease UAT testing. On top of this, Assembla provides code repositories (we use Git), and that allows the client to see their actual code being delivered. In the end, there are no surprises, and it keeps the whole team engaged; and that is key.


Eric Miller Chief Executive Officer at Avi-on Labs

April 20th, 2016

Definitely Slack for internal. It works great for external if you can get your partners to participate, we find that hard unless they happen to use slack already. 

We usually end up on skype or email for external. 

Basecamp is ok for a document repository and to dos, we use if for some discussion that needs a more permanent accessible record. 

We have over 5,000 messages a week on slack so information gets buried there pretty quickly, but people use it anyway because it is easy. 


Marc-André Launière Conseiller en gestion / Travailleur autonome

April 20th, 2016

Slak is really good.  Basecamp works well too.