Employees who work remotely need to be able to communicate effectively. However, it’s just as crucial for in-house team members to be on the same page, have access to the latest updates, and keep pace with ongoing projects.
Needless to say, since 2019, there has been a significant rise in workers using collaboration tools. By 2026, the global team collaboration software market is expected to reach $22.95 billion.
The difficulty for any SaaS business is not deciding to use collaboration software but deciding which is the best team collaboration software, as there are so many to choose from.
What is team collaboration?
Team collaboration is an approach to communication, team, and project management that focuses on teamwork, equal participation, and innovative thinking.
In other words, it’s all about working together on a project, concept, or process to achieve the best possible result.
Team collaboration is different from teamwork in terms of the roles within the team and leadership.
Collaboration is a gathering together of colleagues who join forces to complete a task or solve a problem. Group effort is the focus and finding the solution as a collective force. In a collaborative team, there tend to be no leaders. Instead, each team member is encouraged to contribute with their unique skills.
Teamwork is a complete contrast because the focus is more individual. Each team member has a particular responsibility, and their efforts enable the team to reach a common goal. Regarding leadership, teamwork requires someone to lead, coordinate individuals, and help them achieve a common goal.
According to Apollotechnical, more than 4.7 million people work at least half of the time remotely in the US. Across the world, around 18% of people work remotely full-time. Team collaboration plays a vital role in succeeding at work for many people.
Team collaboration is essential because:
- It encourages better problem solving
- Team members can develop their skills
- Remote teams become more efficient
- It gives a broader perspective, and employees develop a big-picture outlook
- It supports knowledge sharing
- Promotes a healthy company culture
- Employees can create a big-picture outlook
- Improves employee happiness and engagement
How to improve team collaboration?
Improving team collaboration isn’t a one-person job. It’s not something that will happen overnight, either. It takes time and effort from more than one person.
There are several things you can do if you want to encourage collaboration in your SaaS business.
- Create a supportive work environment: Team members should feel safe and unafraid to share their ideas. Every team member should feel their contributions are appreciated.
- Encourage clear communication of expectations: For a team to be collaborative, they must know precisely what is expected.
- Use online platforms to facilitate communication and increase collaboration: Team members may work from various locations, but modern technology provides the tools to stay in touch.
- Work with your employees' strengths: Myers-Briggs is an example of a personality test you can use to help your employees learn more about themselves and other team members.
- Encourage brainstorming: Hold brainstorming sessions during which team members can share ideas. Regularly ask them for new ideas and what they think.
- Invest in automation: Free up time by investing in tools and software that automate recurring tasks. This allows employees to focus on more exciting tasks.
- Create overlap areas: Employees can be just as productive when not sitting at their desks all day. Unplanned interactions during lunch, while getting coffee, or waiting for a meeting to start can be great for exchanging ideas. Encourage team members to step away from their desks, take a break, and find someone from a different department or team to talk to.
- Encourage socialization outside of work: Organize outings and team-building activities so team members can see each other as human beings rather than just a job title.
- Consider mistakes as learning opportunities: Mistakes are bound to happen, but the important thing is how they’re handled. Employees shouldn’t be called out and criticized. Instead, mistakes should be viewed more as an opportunity to learn, assess why the mistake occurred, and make better plans moving forward.
- Lead by example: Collaborative team leaders should cooperate with others and not fall into the trap of “Do as I say, not as I do.”
What are the leading modern SaaS software solutions for team collaboration?
Success for your modern SaaS business boils down to having the right tools to make collaboration possible. With the right combination of tools, a team can be exponentially more productive and able to focus on the most critical work.
There are various types of software solutions you can use to improve collaboration in the workplace.
1. Live chat support
With live chat support, team members benefit from immediate support and access to information. Conversations can be made in real-time, regardless of where your employees might be.
2. Instant messaging
Instant messaging tools are another type of collaboration tool. It’s possible to designate different channels for different teams and use directories so employees can find and send messages to each other directly. Instant messaging tools allow team members to be on the same page even in different locations.
3. Cloud storage platforms
Cloud computing has become a critical part of most business collaboration tools today. It allows the smallest of businesses to run powerful tools without buying expensive servers and storing vast amounts of data on-site.
Cloud storage platforms allow you to securely back up files to keep them secure and store them remotely. Team members can access documents in real time for editing and collaborating.
4. CRM systems
Collaborative CRM systems allow an organization to collect, organize, and share customer information across multiple teams. Various company divisions can include sales, customer service, marketing, technical support, vendors, distributors, and external customers.
5. Video conferencing
Using video conferencing software, seminars and meetings are possible anywhere. It can be used as a replacement for various face-to-face team communications and can be a one-on-one conversion to a conference with hundreds of participants.
Thanks to the improvements and innovations in video conferencing tools, increasing numbers of companies are choosing to stay at least partially remote following the pandemic, according to McKinsey.
How to choose the best team collaboration tools for businesses?
Knowing which team collaboration tools to use can be confusing with many choices. Each offers a unique range of tools and functions, but if you don’t know what to look for in the first place, you’ll feel overwhelmed.
Rather than choosing what seems popular instead of suitable for your business, here are some things to be aware of.
1. Ensure private and secure team space
Look for team collaboration software that provides a central location where information can be accessed and team members can post and organize information relating to tasks and projects.
However, it’s just as important, if not more so, for the team space to be secure. Tools should protect confidential corporate and customer data and comply with privacy and security regulations.
Minimum requirements include access and identity management tools and enterprise-grade data encryption, whether the system is in use, transit, or rest.
Before purchasing your team collaboration software, check the vendor’s site for its compliance, privacy, and security practices.
2. Provide a powerful team chat
Communication between team members is vital. How are they going to collaborate if they can’t communicate properly? Being part of powerful team chats is especially critical for remote team members.
All team members should have ample opportunities to communicate and collaborate effectively.
Discussion forums are another platform that team members might make good use of. It is a place for them to share their expertise and opinions and give feedback.
3. Allow testing video and audio calls
Video calls play a vital role in team communication and collaboration. Capabilities should include screen sharing, schedulable virtual meetings for small and large groups, and one-on-one calls. You never know when a spur-of-the-moment chat is necessary.
The option of video and audio calls should include the ability to test the system, as there is no point in having the feature if the quality of the rings isn’t good.
4. Cross-platform integration
Whatever collaboration tool you choose should be a part of your organization’s more extensive digital ecosystem. It should be compatible with your business solutions and allow for solutions integration, better synchronization, and seamless workflows.
The benefits of cross-platform integration include:
- Teams have access to more functions and tools than stand-alone software offers
- Team members can move from one task to another with no disruption to their workflow
- The integrity of the data is not compromised
5. Include features that you need
A one-size-fits-all solution doesn’t exist because every business has its demands and needs. One collaboration tool might work for other companies, but there’s no guarantee it’ll work for yours.
You want a collaboration tool that includes features you need, but first, you’ve got to determine what your teams and organization need.
Consider team workflows. Are there any common bottlenecks? Do the teams encounter issues in the course of their work? Identifying these things will help you decide on the tools needed for the team to be more effective and efficient.
Other things to consider include:
- The size of your business
- How many members there are in each team
- What projects do your teams handle
- The industry you work in
7 of the best team collaboration tools for businesses
Now that you know a little more about team collaboration tools and what to look for, let’s introduce the top 7 best tools for businesses.
Filestage is a review and approval software. It allows you to share content, set due dates for tasks, and then wait for any feedback to come back to you. It works with various file formats such as PDFs, images, videos, live websites, audio, and interactive HTML. Filestage also integrates well with a range of apps.
- Allows you to share files and videos using any device
- Unlimited reviewers
- Reduce repetitive project management tasks
- Will enable users to leave feedback in real time
- Storyboards, scripts, and treatments
- Approvals and change requests can be tracked in real-time
- Easy to upload, share files, and comment on
- More than 99% uptime with 24/7 monitoring and response
- 256-bit SSL encryption keeps your data safe
- Check off feedback once it’s been completed
- Resolved comments can be hidden, leaving only the remaining tasks in view
- The software can be used for internal and external approval
- Review steps in the pro plan are limited
- Bugs with notifications and integration with Google needs improving
A 7-day free trial is available.
Latest product updates
- You can change the order of review steps
- Videos can now be looped in Filestage
- Hover over a filename to see the full name of the file
Slack is a popular collaboration tool with thousands of users worldwide. It’s available for desktop and mobile devices and offers many features. You can use the platform to send direct messages and files to groups of people or just a single person. It’s also possible to organize conversations into different channels, for example, general chat, technical support, or specific projects.
- Send DMs and files
- Makes remote work really easy to ace.
- Organize conversations into different channels
- Supports video calling
- Drag, drop, and share files directly within the platform
- Compatible with Google Drive, Box, and Dropbox
- Free version available but with limitations
- Wide set of options and tools
- Beautiful user-friendly design as well as UX
- Its ability to save and archive all threads of conversation that occur on the platform is game-changing for many companies.
- Very customizable
- Apps and integration help us streamline work effortlessly.
- It can be expensive to use, although the free version is pretty impressive
- The quality of video calls and audio could do with some improvement
- Fast-paced communications can be hard to keep track of.
A free plan is available, but you’ll only see the last team messages of the past 90 days, and it only integrates with 10 other apps.
Paid plans include:
- Pro - $7.25 USD per person/month when billed annually; monthly billing is $8.75 USD per person/month
- Business - $12.50 USD per person/month when billed annually; monthly billing is $15 USD per person/month
- Enterprise Grid - a customized platform for more complex enterprises. Price available from the Sales department
Latest product updates
- Member profiles can now be deleted when an account is deactivated
- Domains can be claimed and verified to ensure members only collaborate with external partners
- The sidebar made it much simpler
Proofhub is a project management, communication, and collaboration tool that brings everything together under one roof. It allows teams to collaborate on files, share real-time feedback, keep work organized, and communicate. It is a tool that also integrates with various other popular tools, allowing you to access everything from one central resource.
- Kanban boards and custom workflows
- Makes it easy for project managers to assign tasks and subtasks to team members.
- Project planning options include project timelines and Gantt charts
- Multiple project views
- Real-time discussions take place in a dedicated space
- Group chat
- Online proofing and file sharing
- Available via the web or a mobile app for iOS and Android
- All the tools you need in one place
- Unlimited users
- Using Custom Reports, visualize all finished and unfinished milestones.
- The manager has complete control
- Fast and easy communication
- No option for recurring tasks
- No budgeting function
- It misses having more options in background templates.
Proofhub is available for a flat fee, with no contracts and unlimited users, and you can cancel at any time.
- Ultimate control plan - $89/month billed annually, $99/month when billed monthly.
- Essential plan - $45/month billed annually, $50/month when billed monthly.
A 14-day free trial is available with all the features.
Latest product updates
- Improved welcoming process for new sign-ups
- Proofhub is available free for schools
- Slack and Zapier integration
Chanty claims to be able to increase productivity by 55%. That’s a massive claim, but judging by some online reviews, it seems pretty successful. This easy-to-use collaboration tool offers dozens of features and requires no training.
- Kanban board view
- Teambooks — for a more organized communication
- Allows you to create, assign, and set due dates for tasks
- You can effortlessly turn messages into tasks
- Multiple third-party integrations
- Video and audio calls and voice messages
- White and dark themes
- User-friendly software
- Multiple app integrations
- Allows for conversations and instant messaging
- Possibility to transfer files and links of any format up to 100 MB
- The app can be a little slow sometimes
- It could be expensive depending on the number of users
Chanty offers a free plan for teams with up to 10 integrations and 10 members with up to 20GB file storage per team. There’s also a business plan for unlimited members and additional features.
Business plan - $3 per user/month
Latest product updates
- Pin messages to get back to
- Ping colleagues or team members for a quick answer or solution
5. Google Workspace
Formerly known as G Suite, Google’s Workspace is one of the better-known collaboration tools. It combines a selection of applications from Google that non-profit organizations, schools, and SaaS businesses can use.
- Effective cross-app Cloud search functionality.
- Provides each user with a professional email address.
- Word processing
- Voice and video conferencing
- Integrate complete apps like Slack, Freshbooks, and SurveyMonkey, or opt for add-ons such as Google Translate and Zoom for Google Calendar.
- Cheap and easy to use
- Google Vault within G Suite is ideal for managing your business data.
- Integrates well with a range of other Google tools
- The security dashboard helps pinpoint compromised areas in your G Suite account for added protection.
- If you’re not already a Google user, it’s possibly a poor choice
- Not as many features as other collaboration tools
- Poor customer support
- No free option
Google Workspace is available for no charge for 14 days.
- Business starter - $7.2 USD/user/month
- Business standard - $14.4 USD/user/month
- Business plus - $21.6 USD/user/month
Latest product updates
- New integrated view for email
- Upgrade to Duo experience
- Improved notifications when editing Microsoft Office files
Monday means more than just a day of the week; it’s the given name of a collaboration tool that offers numerous project and team management features. It’s a very visual tool that has a free option. You can use it to plan, track, and collaborate in a visually simple manner.
- Drag and drop functionality
- Ease of use
- Integrates with Slack, Google Drive, Trello, Dropbox, and many others
- Native mobile app for remote and on-the-go work
- Team collaboration
- Timeline management
- Includes a range of ready-made templates
- Quickly see where a project is using charts or dashboards
- Access available for all team members
- Automation feature
- Easy-to-follow interface along with easy tutorials
- 24/7 customer support
- The basic plan has limited features
- Some essential integrations, such as ActiveCampaign and Canvas, are missing.
You get to use Monday.com for up to 2 seats for free. However, the features are limited. There is also a free trial for 14 days that allows you to trial the Pro plan. Paid-for plans include:
- Basic plan - $8 per seat/month or $24/month when billed annually
- Standard plan - $10 per seat/month or $30/month when billed annually
- Pro plan - $16 per seat/month or $48/month when billed annually
- Enterprise plan - For teams, businesses and organizations (Custom Pricing)
Latest product updates
- New app to launch Google Ad campaigns
- More secure Work forms experience
- Expanded Monday work docs settings
Mailbutler is an all-in-one email extension tool for Apple Mail, Outlook and Gmail. It allows you to email quickly and includes features such as snooze, sends later, mail tracker, notes, templates, signatures, and more. It integrates directly into your existing mail client, so users don’t have to learn to use any new software.
- Email tracking
- Email signatures
- Email templates
- Undo send
- Attachment reminder
- Useful scheduling feature
- Simple to use with lots of productive features
- Helpful tracking feature
- Improves efficiency
- There were bugs, to begin with, but they seem to have been resolved
A 14-day free trial is available. If you like it, you can choose from the following plans:
- Tracking plan - $4.95 per user per month
- Professional plan - $8.95 per user per month
- Smart plan - $14.95 per user per month
- Business plan - $32.95 per user per month
Latest product updates
- Per recipient tracking
- Time presets return
- Template and signature analytics removed
- Send Later working hours option added
All SaaS companies can benefit from using the right team collaboration software. Not only will it boost productivity, but it will also improve output and promote teamwork.
Before making your final decision, align with management and key stakeholders concerning needs and expectations. Consider their needs and your budget, and pick a product that meets both. Test the platform firsthand by requesting a free trial and schedule demo sessions to help get your questions answered.
What is team collaboration?
Team collaboration is a project management and communication strategy that prioritizes teamwork, innovative problem-solving, and equal involvement to accomplish goals.
How to improve team collaboration?
Create a supportive work environment. Communicate expectations. Use an online platform to communicate. Work with your employees' strengths. Encourage team members to brainstorm. Invest in automation for your business. Create overlap zones.
What are the benefits of using collaboration software?
Collaboration platforms increase productivity in various ways, both on-site and remotely. The significant advantages are time and resource savings, enhanced communication, new idea generation, and improved team morale.
Why should I use online collaboration tools in 2023?
Online collaboration tools should be used in 2023 because they will improve the efficiency, transparency, and clarity of your work and collaborations, regardless of where you work. Many tools are beneficial to particular sectors and team configurations. Additionally, many products are helpful for specific teams and industries, so it's easy to locate a tool that feels custom-made for you and your requirements.