In today’s work environment, having the right tools to support team collaboration and communication is essential.
The dynamics of dispersed teams and remote workers has stretched the concept of teams well beyond geographical locations. And although team members may be separated by distance, the fast paced nature of information and deliverables requires them to work together closer than ever.
Fortunately, there are many tools available to support your team and bring them together.
With that in mind, we created a list of the top nine tools to support your internal communication and team collaboration. Categories include email, video, social networking, project management, and more.
The goal is to find a solution that can bring your team together on a user friendly platform to communicate and collaborate towards a common goal. The tools on this list were chosen because they're easy to use and allow you to onboard your entire team without long periods of training.
Online Tools for Internal Collaboration and Communication
You might only need one of these tools or you might find a combination of tools works better for your workflow. This list shows what's available so you can create a specific toolset for your particular needs.
Gmelius for Team Communication and Collaboration
If you happen to be on the Google network of Gmail or G Suite - Gmelius is for you.
The main advantage in using Gmelius is that it combines several of the features on this list of tools without requiring you to jump back and forth between different platforms. Once you install, all the features are available directly from your Gmail inbox.
Gmelius supports Google Chrome, Opera, Safari, and Brave browsers as well as Android and iOS for mobile devices.
What makes Gmelius great?
- Turns your Gmail inbox into a light CRM and work-hub for team communication and collaboration.
- Easily manages group inboxes like support@, sales@ or any other shared inbox right from Gmail.
- Track your emails: find out who opened your email, when, and from where - also let’s you know if your recipient clicked on your link.
- Creates shareable email templates for repetitive messages and adds private notes to provide context to your conversations.
- Turn your emails into tasks and them to shareable Kanban boards to track projects.
- Share email conversations, Gmail labels or your entire inbox.
- Shareable Sequences to automate your email drip campaigns.
Gmelius pricing is available in four different tiers, which includes the free version with unlimited email tracking and email scheduling.
Premium tiers include the Sales, Team, and CRM plans:
Sales, known as the Automation Suite is $9 per month and includes Sequences, Single-stage campaigns, Unlimited email templates, and more.
The Team version comes in at $14 per user/month with all the collaboration features including shared inboxes, labels, and boards.
The best value tier is CRM, perfect for Business Automation, which will run you $20 per user/month. It has everything in Sales and all collaboration/team features. It also includes multi-stage campaigns, team activity reports, and more.
Calendar for Time Management
Connecting and sharing your digital calendars in a smart way helps you improve your productivity and time management.
With Calendar you can share and sync schedules with other users. The time slot features enable event creation and invitations in a matter of seconds.
What makes Calendar great?
- You can use the desktop or app dashboard to access your calendar as well as connect other calendars like Google, Outlook, and Apple.
- Smart scheduling leverages a machine learning algorithm to learn your schedule and help automate event creation, invitations, revisions, and cancellations.
- Your calendar will protect you from any pre-existing or conflicting meetings being scheduled at the same time.
- Calendar automatically transcribes every meeting.
- It allows you to visualize your time spent across each meeting type.
Price: Calendar offers a free plan for individual users. Business plans start at $10/month after a 30-day free trial.
Customization and various calendar views are included in the free basic plan. The paid versions include more features, such as meeting transcriptions and a suite of analytics tools.
Zoom for Video
Hardware, software and network development has made video communications more accessible. Zoom improves online collaboration and team communications using video.
Zoom’s cloud platform has an easy to use meeting software that integrates video conferencing, simple online meetings, and group messaging for small and large organizations alike.
The ease of use, sharing capability, and price point makes Zoom a standout amongst other conferencing vendors.
What makes Zoom great?
- Up to 100 interactive video participants and 10,000 view-only attendees can be part of a meeting.
- Everyone in the meeting can have their video feed on, unlike other services which limit the number of cameras that can be turned on at the same time.
- Participant can join a meeting instantly on browser enabled devices with HD video and HD voice, and dynamic voice detection functionality.
- Has multiple sharing capabilities including screens, desktops, and apps. Users can also send text, image, or audio files.
- Can host both scheduled and instant meetings and record them with local or cloud storage with SSL encryption and AES 256-bit encryption.
Price: Although the free version is limited to only 40 minutes on group meetings you can host up to 100 participants.
At only $14.99 per month/host the Pro version also gives you 100 participants, but the meetings can last up to 24 hours. The Business and Enterprise version are $19.99 each with the added benefit of more hosts, participants, and customization options.
Huddle for Project Management
Managing projects across borders requires a secure and robust platform. Huddle is used by global enterprises and in the highest levels of government agencies.
Yet, small organizations can also afford the services the company offers.
Huddle ranks as one of the most secure collaboration solutions in the industry.
What makes Huddle great?
- Manage tasks, content, approvals, and team communication in one accessible space with a real-time activity personal dashboard.
- Automatic version control so everyone gets the latest version of a file. Previous versions are also stored if you need to roll-back.
- Every document has its own comment stream. Using @mention, individuals or entire teams can stay connected to conversations.
- Control access to files by setting permissions for individuals and teams within and outside of the organization.
- It has data protection compliance with the US - EU Safe Harbor and US-Swiss Safe Harbor frameworks for the collection and use of personal data.
Price: Huddle has a pricing structure which starts at $10 per user/month. Each tier requires a minimum number of users which is 10 for the Starter, 15 for Huddle, and 20 for Huddle Plus.
With each tier you get more storage, file size for transfer, and team workspaces.
Workvivo for Community Experience
Providing a social experience for employees to feel connected and engaged lies at the heart of the Workvivo internal communication platform.
Workvivo connects employees across geographic and organizational boundaries through a high engaging community experience.
What makes Workvivo great?
- Intuitive personal activity feeds ensure people are ‘in the loop’ and allow employees to post content, images and video across the business.
- Collaboration spaces provide focused interactions and free-flow of ideas.
- Public ‘shout-outs’ present wide recognition for a job well done.
- Pulse surveys allow HR and IC to be on top of employee sentiment and engagement.
- Integration to leading communication, collaboration and content management platforms allow for best of breed technology mix.
Price: Workvivo offers a demo and a free trial, during which you can get the details on their premium version.
Slack for Messaging
As messaging apps go, Slack is on top of the food chain. Simply put, it is a chat room for your entire organization. But it is much more than that.
With Slack you can organize your communication for group discussions, share information, send private messages and integrate a host of applications to manage your entire workflow in a single platform.
What makes Slack great?
- Private and organization wide messaging which can be created for small and large groups.
- A drag and drop feature to easily share PDF, image, document, and spreadsheet files.
- Incorporates feeds from social media into apps and blends them together with conversations across different channels.
- Large number of third-party service integration.
- Robust archiving capability for messages, notifications, files, and projects.
Price: Slack has a free version with one on one voice and video calls and 10 integrations. The pay version starts with Standard at $6.67 per user/month with unlimited integration, search history and up to 15 participants for voice and video calls with interactive screen sharing.
The Plus is $12.50 per user/month and it has the same features as the Standard plus more storage, uptime guarantee and 24/7 support.
Samepage for Intranet
Organizations use Intranet software to keep a tight rein on their activity. Samepage provides a platform for sharing all communications with everyone within this ecosystem.
Teams across an organization can create channels and use the built-in tools to communicate and collaborate.
What makes Samepage great?
- You can create cross-team comms channels as secure spaces to organize departments, projects and people.
- Allow members to collaborate in any open team and stream live updates from previous conversations.
- Search for team content, conversations, and people across all projects on any device and share them on your desktop or a file sharing service.
- Communicate using instant messaging via text, voice, or video with members or guests.
- Bring in guests outside of the organization with limited access.
Price: Samepage has a free version with extended features including 10 teams, direct voice/video calls and more.
The Pro version comes in at $7 per member/month and it provides unlimited teams and sub-teams, extended admin capabilities, and advanced integration to name a few of the features.
SnapComms for Push Notification
Push notification allows organizations to distribute information quickly and effectively to small or large groups. The technology makes it possible to keep your staff in the loop in real-time for any development of a project or the organization as a whole.
SnapComms can even deliver visual push notification directly to the desktop, mobile, or digital signage with news ticker.
What makes SnapComms great?
- It makes critical cut through notification to reach employees no matter what device they are using.
- A panic button delivers full-screen emergency alerts to computers, mobile devices, and large displays.
- Has detailed reporting with proof of delivery for each message and it stops the notification on other devices once it is acknowledged on one device.
- Delivers internal video to mobile devices.
- Has mobile gamification capabilities.
Price: SnapComms has a free 30-day trial version. If you want the premium version, the cost of the license fee is dependent on the number of users, hosting solution, and SnapComms’ Channel purchases.
Dropbox for File Sharing
Having a reliable depository for all your data in one central place means you and your team will know where it is at all times.
Dropbox is a proven platform for storing this data and making it available anytime, anywhere.
What makes Dropbox great?
- It has a great value proposition for the amount of storage it provides and you can get as much space as you need.
- 256-bit AES and SSL encryption are used to ensure your data is protected at all times. The protection extends to unlimited file recovery and version history.
- Intelligent synchronization lets you access your files in your account from your desktop without taking up any space on your hard drive.
- Share your workflow with teams, partners, and customers and track the progress of their engagement.
- Take control with the admin console for audit logs, and remote cleaning of devices.
Price: Dropbox has plans for individuals and teams. The individual Plus plan gives you 1TB of storage for $8.25 per month and 2TB for $16.58 per month with the Professional.
For teams it starts with the Standard plan for $12.50 per user/month for 3 TB and $20 per user/ month for as much space as needed.
Evernote Business for Knowledge Management
With all the data being generated, organizations need a knowledge management tool as part of their internal communications and collaboration solution.
Evernote Business keeps track of all your information so it can be shared from anywhere, including offline.
What makes Evernote Business great?
- Captures ideas in notes, pictures, and recorded memos so you can stay organized from anywhere.
- Find words in handwritten notes, images of whiteboards, Post-It notes, and to-do lists scanned into Evernote.
- Share the notes with clients and teams from anyplace.
- It can manage personal moments or the largest of projects.
- Use your smartphone as a scanning device and turn the images into searchable documents.
Price: Evernote Basic is the free version for taking simple notes. With Evernote Premium you can organize everything for $7.99 per month for yourself.
If you want to add your team you will need Evernote Business starting at $14.99 per user/month.
Kudos for Employee Engagement
Making employees feel connected to the place they go to work requires effective communication and engagement. Recognizing their accomplishments is one way to do it.
Kudos is used by Shell, Marriot, DHL Express and other big brands to share feedback with their employees to lower turnover and boost performance.
What makes Kudos great?
- Easy to interpret information and statistics to see individual performance with an engagement dashboard.
- Build continuous real-time feedback to know what employees are thinking year-round instead of the yearly review.
- Get to know your workforce by taking polls and surveys for measuring employee engagement and sentiment.
- Use social tools to announce accomplishment, employee profiles, post newsletters, and general messages and status posts.
- Meet your goals and drive business ROI by acknowledging team members.
Price: You sign up for a demo and free trial.
Choosing The Right Tool for Internal Communication
Keep in mind there is no such thing as the perfect tool, nor one that will solve all your communication issues. When choosing the right tool consider the way your team collaborates and the final goals of your workflow.
You will more than likely have to combine tools to arrive at a solution that works for your team. When possible try to use a solution that combines key features and has a low learning curve so your team can get straight into the benefits.
The goal is to implement solutions which allow your team to focus on their main tasks without having to worry about the tools which will help to make it happen.