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December 6, 2016
Collaboration is critical for businesses to thrive. Yet collaboration tools can often hinder the very thing it’s trying to foster — good communication and collaboration among coworkers. Whether you’re choosing a specific tool for collaboration or are trying to choose software and systems offered by cloud service providers, you need to know what makes for collaborative success:
Integrate Your Software & Systems as Much as Possible
Often the problem is having disjointed systems. This can happen when each one of your workflow systems features its own collaboration system or when no specific collaboration tool is in place. In either case, the best solution is to abandon all of the disparate systems used for collaboration and put a single tool in place that can handle collaboration across all your systems, workflows, and processes.
For security reasons, you shouldn’t use social media, text messaging, or free email platforms like Gmail or Yahoo!. Either choose a specific collaborative tool or opt for secure email services from a trusted cloud service provider. To learn more about choosing software, computer services, and cloud environments, visit Gregory Hanna’s author page on Amazon.
Consolidate to a Single Cloud Service Provider
Another common hindrance to collaboration is disparate cloud services that don’t integrate well. Data integration isn’t just important for collaboration, it’s also essential for leveraging data analytics, financial reporting, and producing business intelligence. If you aren’t using any data analytics or reporting for your insurance business now, you will be in the near future. Using a single cloud service provider allows for easier data integration, since all of your cloud is housed under a single roof. Plus, getting all your cloud products and services through the same provider is cost-effective.
Find & Eliminate Shadow IT
In the absence of a cohesive, fully-functional collaborative tool or system, employees tend to find their own methods to collaborate and communicate. This often means that your regulated and sensitive data gets shared in unsecured ways, such as on social media messages, in text messages, or via someone’s Gmail account. For any collaborative tool to be successful in your insurance business, you’ll need to establish policies for using these less secure means of collaborating.
Be Sure IT & the Business Have a Mutual Understanding
Finally, there is often a disconnect between what IT thinks makes a good collaboration tool and what your productive employees think makes one. You can solve this in different ways. First, you could invite your IT folks over to sit with your production workers for awhile and see what they need and how they use it. Or, you could opt for a collaborative service through your cloud service provider.
With the cloud products and services available today, it isn’t even necessary to have your own IT department. If you do, you can still opt to get additional IT services and products from a cloud service provider, without having to involve IT.
Getting the collaborative solutions you need is easier than you might think — and extremely affordable!
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