It continues to amaze me how people are now able to collaborate with each other and work on a project or business together and not be in the same space, state, or even country. The power of the web has been able to bring people together like never before. It continues to fascinate me how this works and that it is actually producing good results.
Collaborate, the web app that I am reviewing today, does exactly what its name says. It gives you the power of the web to collaborate with others, whether it be on a work project or something else where you need to communicate over the web. I was very interested in it because in my work as an online educator, I have teachers that are in many different areas of our state and some that are even out of state. This platform gives me the ability to communicate with them and to be able to work together effectively as if we were right there working in the same office. I was eager to try it out to see how it would work and whether or not this would be a long term solution for our group.
At its core, Collaborate is a chat app that works great on your desktop or mobile browsers for real-time communications with your team. You can create what are called “rooms” within the web app, which act like chat rooms. For example, let’s say you want to separate out your administrative team from the rest of the people that work for your company, you would set up a room for the admins and then another one for the rest of your workers. Once your rooms are set up, you can now start to invite people that you want to be a part of that group so that you can start to collaborate with them.
Collaborating With Your Team
When you are ready to start collaborating with your team members there are a handful of different things that you can do in the rooms. Like a standard chat room, you can type messages for the rest of your group to see. You can also add tasks for your team to see and you can even assign them to specific members so that they can get it done. You can also share a link as well as upload documents to share with your group. One last feature that is worth mentioning is that you can share your location with your team members too, which can come in handy if you are working with people who are always mobile and on the go.
Since Collaborate is made for business teams, they have added some nice features for them. For example, with a paid plan you can now connect to Evernote, Box, Google Drive, and email to get files from those services to share with your team. You get also greater storage and bigger file sizes when you pay for a plan. They start at $10/month and go all the way up to $100/month. The free plan that you start off with is very limited, in that you can have 5 members in a room and you have 500mb of file storage.
Simple Yet Effective
The funny thing was that as I started to write up my review of Collaborate, I didn’t realize how simple the features are. But, in my opinion, that is not a bad thing. They make it really easy for teams to get started and using the app to their liking. What I appreciate about Collaborate is because you aren’t bogged down with so many features, it seems like even people who are not as tech savvy can feel like they can use it.
One of the things that I have noticed that if people are not used to always using technology or if it is overwhelming, they won’t stick with it. With Collaborate, they give you enough features to make it worth using, but yet not overwhelming for people. I definitely felt like they gave the user groups the right amount of features where you can effectively collaborate with a group of people and not feel like you would be losing out on features by using the app.
Collaborate works great for small as well as big teams of people. I think they did a fine job with the app and made it so that the main focus is on collaboration, task management, and file sharing. The web app is clean and simple and works very nicely. I like that they have an iPhone app to go along with it as that let’s people who are mobile have the freedom to not always be at a computer to still work with team members.
I know there are other apps that have been around longer and have similar features, but what drew me to Collaborate was its simplicity. I don’t need the fancy social aspect or anything else that will bog me down from getting to what I really want to do, which is to communicate with my team of workers throughout the school year. If you are looking for a way to stay in touch with your team and reducing interoffice email, this may be a solution you will want to try out.