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What is business collaboration?

October 27, 2023
Daria Trut

Daria Trut

Categories: Reviews

Business collaboration is about making connections in and out of your company to spark creativity, tackle problems, and hit those shared targets. The recipe for successful collaboration is simple – be open, honest, and productive in your communication, so everyone wins!

Covid-19 has pushed remote collaboration forward, thanks to less face-to-face meetings. And lots of businesses are ready and up for this change, as working from the comfort of one’s home can make us happier, save us money, and even level up our productivity.

Digital tools have been making remote work a breeze, and they’ve shown us that teamwork can thrive no matter where we are. The takeaway here is that miles apart doesn’t mean less heart in getting the job done.

And business collaboration isn’t just about your in-house team. Many businesses are making friends with other companies, clients outside their organization to hit shared goals and come up with fresh ideas. So, when you’re thinking about business collaboration, remember to look beyond your team and consider joining forces with those outside your company walls, too.

Types of business collaboration

The Information Age has touched pretty much every corner of our lives, from healthcare to education. Just like Millennials who’ve grown up with smartphones in their hands, companies aren’t looking to go back to a less connected time. And that’s where open innovation steps in.

Open innovation has come a long way from its early days in IT and healthcare partnerships back in the 70s. Now, the world is all about creating partner ecosystems that work together to create something valuable. This new style of collaboration isn’t just a fresh take on managing resources, it’s a way to drive innovation on a large scale.

This shift is leading to a focus on the long-lasting goals, making participants  worry less about protecting intellectual property, and more about collective strategizing. It’s less about looking out for number one and more about ensuring the whole team makes it across the finish line.

There are four key types of collaboration we see today:

  1. Business collaboration: here’s where companies join forces to share resources, knowledge, and skills. That results in new products, improved efficiency, and a wider market reach.
  2. Academic collaboration: when companies and academic institutions team up, knowledge and research get shared. This leads to innovative solutions, turning academic research into real-world products, and training the talent of tomorrow.
  3. Government collaboration: help from the government can be presented to your team through things like funding programs, setting up rules, or even providing platforms for collaboration.
  4. Non-profit collaboration: teaming up with non-profit organizations can be a real win-win. It helps you tackle social and environmental issues, and in turn, boosts your company’s reputation. It can also attract customers with social consciousness and those who support sustainable development. 

Teaming up with

Each type of collaboration is like a unique flavor, each with its own importance and benefits. By embracing open innovation and actively seeking collaborations, businesses can tap into a sea of resources, knowledge, and new perspectives. This can level up innovation, toughen up resilience, and ultimately, pave the way to success in the interconnected world we live in.

Internal collaboration

Internal collaboration is about teams within the same company bonding together to tackle a task or brainstorm ideas. It’s like a place, where everyone brings something different to the table across all departments. The beauty of internal collaboration is in its power to build a solid team spirit as well as open and friendly atmosphere. That helps completing projects or reaching shared goals. And the best part is that what is shared stays within the team, keeping any confidential info within an organization.

There are many ways to get involved in internal collaboration within a company. You can team up on a project or seek wisdom from a colleague who’s been around longer than you. Companies can put in place mentorship programs or shared online experiences to help internal collaboration. Think of it like setting up a cozy online lounge where employees and leaders can share updates, knowledge, and insights about the company. It’s a great way to keep everyone in the loop and make everyone feel like part of the team. To further optimize this collaborative environment, use asset management software, as it facilitates the organized tracking and utilization of resources, ensuring seamless coordination and enhancing overall organizational efficiency.

In today’s data-driven business environment, best accounting software plays a vital role in promoting internal collaboration. You can handle financial transactions, monitor expenses, and generate comprehensive reports. This financial transparency empowers various teams within an organization, including finance, sales, and procurement, to access real-time financial data and collaborate more effectively.

External collaboration

External collaboration is all about reaching out beyond your company’s walls for projects or valuable insights on how things are done. You could be connecting with suppliers, clients, other organizations, or even competitors. By using external collaboration, you can level up your business processes, like collecting feedback or reviews from customers on a particular product line. It can come in handy, especially when your company doesn’t have the power or resources to get a task done.

There’s a few ways to collaborate with the outside world, for example, chatting with customers directly or sending them an email. A great way to do this could be asking customers for their thoughts on a product or service through an email survey. You can use survey generators to craft tailored questions, customize survey templates, and seamlessly distribute surveys via email. The insights gathered can then be used to make the customer experience even better and answer more effectively to their needs.

Portfolio collaboration

Portfolio collaboration is forming a dream team. A larger company plays the role of a coach, guiding a group of smaller partners, each bringing their own unique skill and talent to the table. Their job isn’t just to supervise. Take big pharma companies, for example. They’ve successfully built dream teams by partnering with smaller biotech firms. This strategy lets them get their hands on intellectual property rights, research paths, or specific drug candidates.

Take big pharma

In return, these smaller biotech firms get to use the big companies’ resources, infrastructure, and expertise. This partnership allows them to step up their game and compete more effectively in their markets. So, it’s a win-win for everyone!

Ecosystem collaboration

Ecosystem collaboration is about realizing that no organization is an island. Instead, they’re part of a bigger, interconnected family, or ecosystem. This ecosystem is like a neighborhood, filled with customers, suppliers, competitors, regulators, academic institutions, non-profit organizations, and more. It functions on certain rules and norms that shape how everyone interacts.

The value of these ecosystems is set by their collaborators or customers, claiming that innovation is now a group project, not just the job of one company.

Ecosystem collaboration is now known across a wide range of industries and sectors. In the tech world, companies in the same field might join forces in an ecosystem to create compatible products, standardize data sharing, or tackle cybersecurity issues together. For example, ecosystem collaboration is a fundamental element of contemporary mobile app development. Through cooperation with other participants in the ecosystem, developers can craft a more comprehensive and user-friendly experience for their customers.

Strategic alliance collaboration

A strategic alliance is like a dream team where two or more organizations join forces to reach a common goal. These partnerships can be like a short sprint or like a marathon, depending on what you’re aiming for. In such collaborations, the partner organizations share their insights and secrets, often stepping in where the other can’t. These team-ups can help hit various business targets. Sometimes these partnerships come with a rules set that outlines each party’s roles. If someone disagrees, the escalated argument or case can be taken to a courtroom.

Network collaboration

Network collaboration is when individuals join in to chase their personal dreams. It can happen in person or online, and often brings together people who might not have crossed paths before. Everyone in this collaboration brings their unique perspectives or experiences to the table. Over time, it’s expected that people make new friendships as well as professional contacts to help reach their goals.

You’ve probably seen network collaboration in action on social media. Lots of platforms are encouraging this type of collaboration, creating a place for people to meet for all sorts of reasons. It could be for job hunting, chatting about the latest breakthroughs in a certain industry, or just about anything else. The ultimate aim of network collaboration is to provide everyone in the network with helpful resources so that people bring something valuable to the table!

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Cloud collaboration

Hasn’t working together in person become a thing of the past? Cloud collaboration is on the rise and it’s all because of the amazing flexibility and broad usage it offers. The survey from McKinsey says 80% of businesses are now using collaboration apps in their operations.

And it’s not just about working together on the same project, it’s also about automating the daily tasks, like budget requests. They sync up perfectly with crucial business applications for swapping data. The best part is making all the important info easily accessible to everyone, no matter the department or project. Such apps let you chat instantly, all while knowing your company’s data is safe. 

Marketing collaboration

Collaborative marketing is when companies become a single force in order to pull off some really awesome marketing strategies. This can be as simple as sharing a cute social media post together, or as impressive as co-creating a product or throwing a big event.

What’s so great about this? Well, when companies team up, they can really play off each other’s strengths to take their marketing to the next level. And this lets them reach more people, get their brand noticed, find new customers, and acquire more leads.

Remember when Uber and Spotify joined forces? You get in an Uber, connect your Spotify, and play your favorite tunes during your ride. Not only does this make your ride more fun, it gives both Uber and Spotify a ton of exposure and makes them look amazing. How’s that for a win-win?

Benefits of business collaboration

  1. Employee engagement: engaged employees actively contribute to their teams and company. A collaborative workplace motivates engagement, leading to better productivity and customer satisfaction
  2. Learning and skill development: collaboration allows employees to learn from each other organically, expanding their collective skill set. This helps in effectively solving new challenges.
  3. Workflow efficiency: collaboration can level up problem-solving, making production faster and more efficient. It encourages open communication, ensures even workload distribution, and reduces workplace stress.

What is TrueConf Collaboration role in business?

Did you know

Upgrading your business collaboration with software like TrueConf is way easier than you might think. The solution has customizable public and private channels, just like your favorite messaging apps, but it’s all neatly packed into the TrueConf app. It works for any type of business.

Each team member can jump into groups, and they can choose whether to get notifications for each chat. This keeps everyone in the know and in line with the company’s plan. When you’re working on a specific project, all the chat happens right in the relevant group.

Don’t let messy data and confuse communication. When you manage your info strategically in a collaborative environment, it’s adding fuel to your business. Did you know that 66% of employees are willing to have a single platform for workplace collaboration to cut out the chaos? It’s time to make a change. Make business collaboration a breeze with TrueConf.

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