No matter where your team is, can manage them smart way using online videoconferencing spur collaboration.

Even if everybody is in the same building, which is becoming much rarer with the evolution of telecommuting and rising numbers of freelancers, sometimes it just makes sense for everybody to work on the same thing from different locations. There are great applications out there to help you and your team communicate, collaborate, and really get your project off the ground. Moving your head into the clouds, can actually be a good thing.

Cloud and You

Forbes magazine forecasts that businesses will increasingly shift their software needs into the cloud with 59 percent making that move by 2018. So even workplace staples like Microsoft office are moving into the cloud to allow greater access and portability.

The rapid evolution of software is service comes courtesy of the lotion in popularity and commensurate reduction in price of smart phones and tablets. Lacking the hard drive of a laptop or desktop, these devices require Internet access in order to operate their applications while maintaining a lightweight operating system on their solid-state chips. It is humbling to some who remember their first computer being nowhere near as powerful or having as much storage as the phone in their pocket.

Cloud-based software is not purchased in a box, and then installed on a computer’s hard drive. Instead PC Magazine tells us that the software as service is hosted on a vast network of servers in many different geographical locations. Users instead of working from their desktop, access their programs through the Internet.

This leads to improved mobility as programs can be accessed from anywhere, and on multiple devices. For instance if you are working on a project in Adobe Photoshop from the desktop at your office, you will also be able to work on that same project from your laptop wherever you happen to go, as the program and the work that you have stored there are located on servers. You can also share that work with other people who have access to that app.

Sharing is Caring

Collaborating on a project is a certain amount of diplomacy. Some people just don’t like to share, they want to be left in their comfort zone to work and complete their projects without being dragged into a meeting every 10 minutes. To be sure, meeting culture has gotten somewhat out-of-control. A Verizon white paper surveyed busy professionals who said that they are asked to attend sometimes as many as 60 meetings per month. For managers who understand the difference between motion and progress, and appalling statistic.

Frequent meetings can be disruptive, and not in a good way. They can cause disruption to workflow, setting back projects, causing confusion, and disrupt your team’s personal lives by pulling them away from family, or causing them to work longer hours in order to implement multiple sets of differing procedures. Using videoconferencing applications like Bluejeans can reduce the need for frequent face-to-face meetings, minimize disruptive travel, and yet still bring valuable communication and collaboration opportunities to your far-flung staff.

Bluejeans network online video collaboration is not just a sit and talk application, but instead allows sharing of documents and other rich content, multiple speakers, and the ability for replay meeting in its entirety when they feel they need a refresh. Meetings are still valued by nine out of 10 professionals as vital opportunities to contribute to the success of their company, and to have that contribution heard and recognize.

People love meetings – but they don’t love disruption to their workflow, or time away from their family. Some even admitted in a Verizon survey that they either dozed off or daydreamed. Making meetings interesting, and making sure that they are necessary, is the key to spurring collaboration and engagement among your most experienced and educated staff. It’s easy to use no matter where you are or what device you are on – from a room-based system at the home office, to a smart phone on the other side of the world.

Gigaom’s recent research shows that in excess of 80 percent of videoconferencing users feel much more engaged and involved with their teams and projects. Increasing engagement in experienced workers is a way to stave off higher turnover and quality errors that can harm your company’s brand.

A recent Gallup poll showed that worldwide 87 percent of workers port a level of disengagement from their workplaces and coworkers. Giving your team the opportunity to contribute, be heard and acknowledged, can reengage who might be showing up at the office but not bringing their A game. Giving everyone a chance to contribute to the success of the project and the company can boost the bottom line and boost morale at the same time.

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