Information Systems for Business and Beyond (2019)

Collaborative Systems As organizations began to implement networking technologies, information systems emerged that allowed employees to begin collaborating in different ways. These systems allowed users to brainstorm ideas together without the necessity of physical, face- to-face meetings. Tools such as video conferencing with Skype or WebEx, collaboration and document sharing with Microsoft SharePoint, and project management with SAP’s Project System make collaboration possible in a variety of endeavors. Broadly speaking, any software that allows multiple users to interact on a document or topic could be considered collaborative. Electronic mail, a shared Word document, and social networks fall into this broad definition. However, many software tools have been created that are designed specifically for collaborative purposes. These tools offer a broad spectrum of collaborative functions. Here is just a short list of some collaborative tools available for businesses today: • Google Drive. Google Drive offers a suite of office applications (such as a word processor, spreadsheet, drawing, presentation) that can be shared between individuals. Multiple users can edit the documents at the same time and the threaded comments option is available. • Microsoft SharePoint. SharePoint integrates with Microsoft Office and allows for collaboration using tools most office workers are familiar with. SharePoint was covered in greater detail in chapter 5. • Cisco WebEx. WebEx combines video and audio communications and allows participants to interact with each other’s computer desktops. WebEx also provides a shared whiteboard and the capability for text-based chat to be going on during the sessions, along with many other features. Mobile editions of WebEx allow for full Information Systems for Business and Beyond (2019) pg. 153

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