Today, many companies actively use chat programs for business due to the coronavirus pandemic. Regardless of the size and scope of activity of the enterprise, members of the staff can use team messengers to optimize their work.
Why Should You Use a Chat App?
Using the office chat programs can significantly increase team productivity. After all, this relieves you of the need to visit colleagues personally to relay some information or organize a meeting to discuss every smallest question. It is even more convenient if you have remote employees. In this case, the corporate messenger becomes an indispensable working tool, without which the project’s progress can slow down significantly. There are a number of convenient programs that were created specifically for internal corporate communication.
Features to Look for in Enterprise Messengers
Developers from all over the world offer a ton of great group chat apps. The features of such programs can be very diverse. Nevertheless, you should always focus on the needs of your company. For example, a small company where employees are hosted in an open space does not need a multifunctional video chat.
The functionality of corporate chats can vary dramatically. The main feature of this kind of application, of course, is the ability to correspond in real-time. Another useful capability is sending images, voice recordings, and files. Some enterprise messengers provide task tracking, agendas, and calendar services integration. In a single program, you can correspond with colleagues, organize meetings, set work tasks, and track their implementation.
Last but not least, the feature is end-to-end message encryption. Many modern messengers use data protection protocols so that corporate correspondence would be safe from interception.
Benefits of Team Chat App
In everyday life, most people use various communication apps. With their help, you can conveniently chat with friends, exchange images and files. The same is true for team chat software. However, the functionality of such programs is usually wider and the requirements are determined by the amount of work.
It is more convenient to discuss project issues with your team in a group chat. Here you can also share documents, files, and useful links. Of course, like any tool, corporate chats have their drawbacks, especially if the program was chosen incorrectly. Still, it is very hard to ignore the benefits of this type of correspondence. These are speed, ease of use, and data protection.
Evaluating the work of this or that application is difficult. Much depends on the specifics of use. If security and confidentiality are in the first place for your company, then it is better to choose programs with the highest level of data protection and a good message encryption system.
If you want the team to consult with experts from all over the world, then it is better to take a closer look at open communication platforms. If employees are torn between project management and communication, then there are a considerable number of programs that combine the advantages of both. The choice is large, you only need to determine which functions are the most suitable for your company and implement team chat into your business processes.
TOP Twenty Two Examples of Group Chat Software for Teams
One of the most popular instant messengers today. The developers put the focus on the speed and security of correspondence. This is a fairly simple and free messenger that provides the opportunity not only to exchange messages but also to create chats, groups and channels.
Also, with its help, you can share photos, news, videos and documents of various formats. The service can be synchronized with all of the user devices, including smartphones, PCs and tablets, has versions for all the common operating systems.
This is a corporate messenger, often called the best team chat app. The program has excellent functionality, which can additionally be enhanced with a wide variety of plugins.
Besides personal communications, you can create thematic group chats, conduct audio, and video conferences, create and manage tasks, control the calendar of events, and integrate with other useful services (Google Drive, Twitter, Google Hangouts, DropBox and others) Has clients for iOS, Android, desktop operating systems, and web application. Basic subscription is free but limited while paid plans start at $6.67 per employee/month.
Convenient service that combines two main functions: managing project tasks and communication between employees in the process of project implementation. The developers claim that the program promotes staff involvement, increases the satisfaction and productivity of the team as a whole. With the help of this service, you can conveniently communicate with colleagues, control the time spent on the task, create subtasks and generate analytical reports.
The platform has a web, desktop, and mobile client. The free version has limited functionality while paid plans start at $5 per user/month.
4. Google Hangouts
Google’s communication platform with the possibility of video conferencing, formerly a feature of Google+. This messenger stands out for its ease of use and accessibility. It synchronizes perfectly with other Google products, there is also the opportunity to broadcast the webinar on Youtube.
There are versions for all the major platforms. Most of the functions are available free, you can expand the possibilities when buying a paid version of G Suite, the price starts at $5.40 per user/month.
5. Cisco Webex Teams
This is a program for team collaboration developed by Cisco. Several directions are united in this service: a messenger for correspondence, audio and video calls, file exchange, planner, and scheduler. You can chat with colleagues securely, share files, display your screen, hold online meetings and create to-do lists. Has clients for Windows, iOS, and Android.
There is a limited free plan. The cost of the paid plans starts at €12.85 per host/month (“The host is any individual who may schedule and conduct Webex meetings”). Separately, we must note that the company created a number of video conferencing devices to support Webex capabilities.
This is a self-hosted communication solution designed for secure team collaboration. Developers describe their product as the main alternative to Slack. After all, there is all the necessary functionality: receiving and sending messages, files, documents and images, the ability to track the history of correspondence, setting up notifications for any connected gadget.
Among other things, the program has a large set of modules for integration with Jira, IRC, Hubot, Giphy, Jenkins, BitBucket, Twitter, Redmine, etc. Mattermost consists of Linux/Docker-based servers and clients for iOS, Android, Windows, Linux, and macOS. The usage fee starts at $3.25 per user/month.
This app is more than a work chat. This is a collaboration tool that integrates a group messenger, task management, document exchange, video conferencing, and contact storage. ChatWork can be opened in a browser and has versions for Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android. Limited basic usage plan is free while the premium plans begin at $4.00 per user/month.
Rocket.Chat is an open cloud- and self-hosted corporate chat software. Developers call their product a safe environment for team correspondence. The service provides an opportunity for the company to control all communications securely. You can customize the interface and choose modules that implement the required functionalities. Has clients for desktop and mobile platforms. The community version is free, and the cost of the Professional/Enterprise version starts at $3.00 per user/month.
All-in-one collaboration platform that helps to manage communication between staff members, partners, and consultants. Using this tool, you can manage projects and tasks, keep a calendar, hold video calls, share files and, of course, communicate in real-time. In 2017, the program was nominated as the “Most Recommended Project Management Software” by Capterra. Separate apps are available for macOS, Windows, iOS and Android. All the basic functionality is available for free, while premium access costs $8.00 per user/month.
A part of enterprise Office 365 subscriptions, Yammer is an enterprise social network, designed to help to establish effective interaction and smooth collaboration. Using Yammer, you can create thematic chats, search for information, and conveniently manage tasks. Thanks to the integration with the Bing engine, you can search for people, companies or text. Service has clients for macOS, iOS, Windows Android, and provides direct integration with Office 365. The cheapest Office 365 corporate plan that contains access to Yammer – E1 – costs $8 per user/month.
Internal chat software. The developers claim that this product promotes thoughtful communication and provides space for the development of a knowledge base. This program was designed with the aim to support the detailed professional discussion of projects. With it, you can jointly edit documents and discuss changes in one place. Has versions for Linux, Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android. The free version is limited and fully functional paid version charges $5.00 per user/month.
12. Zoho Cliq
Cliq is a corporate messenger that optimizes working hours and resources. The program provides convenient bots that help with task control, as well as the ability to create a list of commands and connect integrations. Other important features include document sharing and notification settings. Has desktop and mobile versions. There is a basic free plan, while the unlimited version’s usage fee starts at €2.7 per user/month.
Glip is a real-time team with task management and file exchange capabilities. There are such functions as collaborative document editing, data archiving, convenient synchronization with Outlook, calendar management and video calls. With Glip, you can develop corporate productivity and simplify the organization’s internal communication process. The service works on Mac, Windows, Android, iOS. There are a limited free version and extended paid plan costing $5 per user/month.
One of the most popular chat programs for work, Flowdock has a very diverse functionality. With its help, you can communicate with colleagues and teams, receive emails, share documents and discuss team projects. It is possible to instantly add files by dragging and dropping into the chat window. Flowdock integrates easily with many tools, such as Capistrano, Heroku, Kiln, Mercurial, and Jenkins. Has apps for Linux, macOS, Windows, Android, and iOS. The cost of the paid version starts at $3 per user/month.
This is a secure open-source corporate messenger. All the conversations use end-to-end encryption. In general, this is an excellent messenger with a set of useful features, such as sharing media, anonymous communication, correspondence with users that are absent in the contact list (searching by e-mail, phone, social network profile). Works great both on smartphones and desktops. The app is absolutely free.
Signal is considered to be one of the secure instant messengers to date. The combination of customary chat functions and the highest possible security makes this service quite popular among organizations that are worried about informational safety. Chat encryption is performed using Signal Protocol, which was also used for other well-known instant messengers. The program runs on all possible operating systems and is free of charge. According to the developers, the project was created for people and is supported by grants and donations.
Completely free chat and networking platform designed for community collaboration that is integrated with GitHub. It allows developers from all over the world to discuss projects and create new products. The program has open rooms, embedded files, open-source repositories, as well as the ability to integrate with other services such as GitLab, Jenkins, Heroku, Sentry, HuBoard, Pagerduty, etc. The service is offered as a web application, though there are desktop and mobile clients.
18. Microsoft Teams
A corporate chat app that extends the standard features for collaboration in Office 365. The application provides the ability to chat with colleagues in real-time, access the frequently used files and documents, make video calls, and set up notifications. Has clients for Windows, macOS, Android and iOS. The basic usage plan is free, while extended functionality is available starting at the Office 365 Business Premium subscription ($12.5 per user/month).
One of the newest instant messengers based on the XMPP protocol. Using this service, you can safely chat with colleagues, exchange media files, and create group chats. The program is developed under Android and costs $1.9 in the Google Play Store.
One of the most secure team communication tools based on Matrix protocol. In addition to the standard chat capabilities, there is also the possibility of exchanging files, voice messages and video conferencing. The program has a web app, clients for Windows, Linux, macOS, iOS, Android, and is free.
Discord is a communication platform, initially aimed to provide text and voice messaging to gamers. In addition to the usual messaging, video calling and file-sharing capabilities, using Discord you can broadcast music, demonstrate your screen, and create dedicated channels. The service has clients for all major platforms and is free.
This is a work collaboration platform with the function of a corporate messenger. Developers position the program precisely as a space for convenient communication. There are a number of useful features such as setting up personal notifications, processing emails, sharing files and documents. Using this product, you can comfortably organize a working correspondence, breaking it into groups according to directions. Convo can be installed under Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, and as a Chrome plugin. The main functionality of the service is free but you can order advanced features for an additional fee which is estimated by the company upon request.
Tips for Choosing a Group Chat App
Programs created for working correspondence have a number of criteria that you should heed when choosing a service for your company. If your company works on a project and there is a need for tracking tasks, then it is worth taking a closer look at applications that, in addition to the standard messaging, provide project management capabilities.
If your company often holds workshops or online meetings with partners, then you should opt for a messenger with video conferencing. Choose a program for your specific needs, based on your field of activity, the format of cooperation, financial opportunities, and used devices.
Group chat is a great way to quickly share information, clarify contentious issues, and discuss a project. If you want to increase team productivity, then this is one of the easiest ways. Indeed, with the help of a good program, you will avoid many unpleasant situations and misses in the project, speed up data transfer and the process of discussing the tasks.
Many services and apps aimed at the enterprise segment have chats as an addition. For example, an award-winning Nimble CRM expands its functionality using the built-in messaging, including group chats, integration with email and Twitter. With it, you can conduct corporate correspondence both within the team and with partners or potential customers.
Team collaboration tools can be a great way to build relationships in a team. After all, communicating with each other on working moments, company personnel support and help each other, provide advice, and share insights. Timely support has an important role in the team.
Messenger functionality can also greatly facilitate the workflow. For example, the ability to keep a calendar and track events is of high importance. With a notification, your employees will no longer miss important appointments. Some programs provide access to mail or may have so-called “open rooms” where you can chat with customers from around the world and discuss ideas. A properly implemented working chat brings many benefits.
Every day we use dozens of programs, such as social networks, email agents, navigators, image editors, and a variety of messengers. The ability to chat with colleagues in real-time provides several advantages. A modern employee can no longer imagine a workflow without corporate chat. This is the comfort that changes the attitude towards work correspondence.
Take a closer look at the functionality, determine the pricing policy and select the best group chat software for your company. Your team will be pleased with such an innovation, we assure you.