Collaboration - What is it and Why is it needed ?
Collaboration is simply a series of conversations to achieve a goal. It involves gathering people, asking questions, collecting answers and ideas, surfacing information, getting feedback on interim deliverables, and the like. It is the way most work gets done.
We have been collaborating since a long time using today’s business tools – email with attached documents. Collaboration has been slow, difficult and ineffective. Knowledge get fragmented across many places – individual emails, different versions of presentations, excel files and word documents – stored in different desktop applications, shared drives or document management systems. Employees spend up to 1/4 of their day searching for information, according to research firm IDC. The cost of this unproductive time can be as much as 25% of your staff costs. This means the bulk of work doesn’t leverage the specialized knowledge that exists right there in the company, because there is no good way to find it.
Collaboration solutions, based on wikis and other Web 2.0 technologies, also known as Enterprise 2.0 solutions are focused on solving these problems. With the right collaboration solution, group productivity and organizational effectiveness can be dramatically increased, and decision cycle times can be greatly reduced.
Blogs make the process of publishing thought, sharing opinions and creating conversations turning into highly effective idea machines. Wikis allow departments and teams to collaborate in a distributed way, saving time and money. Bookmarking lets people access links they have saved from across the Internet, helping them discover related information more efficiently. Videos enable sharing tacit knowledge and expertise. Tagging removes the need for a single editor to work out what every piece of content means and categorize it accordingly and in turn help users find the information they are looking for based on the experiences of others like them, reducing effort. RSS, drastically reduces the amount of time required to constantly check websites to see whether they have been updated and reduces email overloads.
Cyn.in combines the capabilities of these collaboration tools and other social applications into a seamless platform. This document is designed to highlight best practices in using a collaboration solution like cyn.in to achieve business results.