Communication is the key to everything. At Samepage we like to say great conversations lead to great content. Unfortunately, in today's world of flexible work schedules and distributed teams, it can be difficult to have the informal conversations that help more work forward. Now there are a number of chat applications to help you communicate no matter where your colleagues are. These are 5 of the best in no particular order:
Slack is the top group chat app for business if you're measuring by hype. Just about everyone is familiar with the platform, so I won't take too much time covering it here. Slack's interface is straightforward with channels and users on the left-hand side. You can set up the channels as you like giving your team lots of flexibility.
And who doesn't love Slackbot? Slack's party piece is the openness of the platform. Dev teams love that they can build custom integrations for Slack. And for large organizations Slack recently released their Slack Enterprise Grid, which allows administrators to connect and administer several Slack instances across an organization.
HipChat first caught on with these great commercials starring Lumbergh.
The team behind HipChat, Atlassian, makes several popular team collaboration software JIRA and Confluence. HipChat and Slack have very similar functionality - with the added bonus that if you use other Atlassian tools they easily integrate with HipChat.
Ryver set their sights on Slack from day 1. Ryver is designed for Slack users - just about all of the functionality in Slack is there - but it's 100% free. There are no premium versions, no tiers, no tricks, just free team chat.
Besides being free, Ryver offers threaded topical discussions that they say help teams cut through the flood of messages on other services and have more productive conversations.
If you're already using Yammer it's probably because you work for a PC shop... not that there's anything wrong with that. Yammer is Microsoft's team chat platform.
It's best for those already using Office 365. That's pretty much all there is to it.
We saved the best for last ;). Samepage has a slightly different philosophy behind chat - threading conversations alongside your team's work. With Samepage you create teams, and each team has a chat room we call team chat.
Then we have Team Pages, which are workspaces for teams to share files, track tasks, and even create documents in real-time. There's a live chat thread right next to each page so your team can discuss items right along side.
Do you use a group chat app at work that's not one of these? Have you tried on of these in the past and love it? Leave a comment below to share your favorite group chat tools.