10 Sep 2015

Collaboration – 3 Steps for selecting the right tools

2017-05-16T17:04:17+00:00 September 10th, 2015|Collaboration|Comments Off on Collaboration – 3 Steps for selecting the right tools

I often get asked for recommendations for team collaboration tools.  The advice I give seems overly simplistic to me, but since I get enough compliments about it, I’ll share it here.

I could expound ad nausea on this topic, but I’ll attempt to be brief and offer 3 key steps in selecting a tool or tools:

There’s a plethora of options, most of which overlap (but few play well together), which unfortunately makes things more complicated.

3 Steps to Selecting Collaboration Tools

Objectives

First, determine what problem(s) you’re trying to solve.  Do you want to improve communications between engineering and marketing?  Perhaps you need a better way for new employees to find internal answers more quickly.  Or maybe you need better ways to communicate across geographies and time zones, but everyone’s email is overflowing.

Put Stakes in the Ground

Next, think of the givens that you can’t change.  For example, perhaps your company management uses PowerPoint religiously for presentations and finance folks use Excel.  If the engineers use Google docs, then you may have to think about whether you need to use both, or which constituents could more easily switch over.  The choice of desktop productivity tools could have a real impact on what collaboration tools you use.  And if knowledge management is a goal, consolidating formats and repositories will make it easier to build an knowledge repository.

Take Small Steps

Then, take small steps.  Don’t rush out and sign-up for a whole bunch of tools because you think you’ll need one in each category.  For example, if you solve doc collaboration, then you may find it better to use a shared spreadsheet for task management than a dedicated and unintegrated point solution.

Then, you can start to narrow down choices. They all have pros & cons, and everyone will have subjective preferences.

For example, at WaveMaker, we needed to solve geo and time zone spread of team and we use MS Office for most of our docs. Thus, we went with Yammer (as better tool than email) but it’s weak for doc collaboration, so we also use online SharePoint (because MS Office doc collab is key and Yammer is now owned by Microsoft, even though still poorly integrated). We use Salesforce.com for CRM, but found Chatter also lacking at doc collab, which was more important to us than CRM integration.

And when you move to a cloud storage solution, here’s a comparison of main methods for cloud doc collaboration.

10 Sep 2015

10 Reasons Why You Should Not Upgrade To Windows 10

2017-05-16T17:17:44+00:00 September 10th, 2015|New Technology|Comments Off on 10 Reasons Why You Should Not Upgrade To Windows 10

After upgrading to Windows 10, I discovered a bunch of shortcomings…

10. OneDrive placeholders no longer supported.  What?  How do you now use that 1 TB cloud storage you planned on using as virtual storage for your MS Surface?

9. Search in Windows 10 Start is slower

8. Battery system tray icon no longer lets you switch power plans.  It’s now embedded several clicks in the UI.

7. All of a sudden, my monitor overscanning stopped working.

6. If you set OneDrive to not start upon Windows 10 startup, good luck figuring out how to start OneDrive manually (hint: look for OneDrive.exe in Programs)

5. Edge is Win 10’s new browser, but it doesn’t support all SharePoint capabilities like “Open with Explorer”, and guess what…you can’t install another IE version (clever IE download site confirms you already have the latest version)!

4. OneDrive folder selection won’t let you proceed unless it thinks you have enough free disk space, even though existing disk space is used by previously-synced OneDrive files.

3. Media Center is gone from Windows 10.  No longer available.

2. Mounted VHD in Windows 10 keeps randomly unmounting (worked for years with Win 7 – 8.1), and then OneDrive cannot complete synching if the mounted drive is not available long enough.

 

And the #1 reason why I should not have upgraded to Windows 10 is….

1. Where’s the benefit?  I see zero advantages over Windows 8.1, only regression.

 

The good news (if you upgraded) is that you do have 30 days to revert back to previous version of Windows (7-8.1).  Click on Start > Settings > Update & Security > Recovery > Go back to Windows xx.