With rumours floating around the legalit sector that there will shortly be an acquisition made within the collaboration platform space, US software developer HyperOffice (www.hyperoffice.com) has unveiled a new version of its communication, collaboration and mobility suite which aims to unite the social and structured philosophies of collaboration in a single, unified interface accessible from any Internet connected PC or mobile device.
“Social networking is no longer just a consumer tool. It is fast becoming the preferred way of communicating, collaborating and connecting with business contacts and colleagues,” said Farzin Arsanjani, President, HyperOffice. “But while the demand for social tools in businesses is intense, serious market gaps remain. Enterprise social tools like Yammer are thin on collaboration capabilities, while collaboration software like Google Apps and Office 365 don’t see social tools as essential to their suites,” Farzin added.
“We believe social collaboration and structured collaboration belong together. The benefits cut both ways – socialization becomes subordinate to productivity, while the silos of collaborative structures are broken,” he added. “HyperOffice is the first ever coming together of robust social and collaboration technologies. It is not a Swiss knife of tools but an environment where the social layer drives engagement, and structured collaboration features are accessed in the natural flow of conversations.”
The new social capabilities are deeply integrated with HyperOffice’s suite of communication and collaboration tools with seamless connections between the “social” and “collaboration” layer. The new version also includes tablet computer access, where workers can connect and participate in social conversations from the road.
• Business social networking – Detailed profiles with users’ personal information, skills, groups and reporting managers.
• Collaboration activity streams – A single wall where employees and teams can keep track of activity of interest across their collaboration network – colleagues, groups, documents, projects, tasks and more.
• Social conversations with dynamic collaboration objects – Teams can have conversations on social walls and attach live collaboration objects like documents, projects, tasks, calendars and more from across the system. Objects are not copies, but live instances that change in real time as a document is changed, a task updated and so on.
• “Follow” the collaborative network – Employees can follow people, groups and even specific documents, projects, tasks, calendars etc., and get updates right on their activity wall.
• IM – Internal instant messaging and presence.
A video of HyperOffice social capabilities can be seen here
A video of structured and social collaboration components coming together in a typical business situation can be seen at here
“I started seeing benefits of social networking in HyperOffice right away,” said Erich de la Fuente, CEO of EDF Communications, a strategic communications and public affairs firm with a global footprint. “As before, I set up the project structure – define the project, add tasks – in the shared projects section. But rather than sending everyone emails to get started, I initiate the effort by posting a message on our team wall, and attaching the project to it. From then on, all conversations around the project happen on the wall – questions, clarifications, exchanging ideas – and we also access and update the project from there. Not only is it easier to keep in the loop than email, I’ve also noticed my teams are a lot more involved. And it’s all there in a single place for future reference. No scrambling here and there for context,” Erich added.
“Our social walls are a vast improvement over email,” said Jenna Balegno, Executive Brand Manager at Canter Companies, a full-service investment firm based in San Diego, CA specializing in real estate ventures. “Our business involves so much back and forth communication between a number of people who might be in various locations. Using email to accomplish these conversations was unproductive and resulted in overloaded inboxes. I am sure everyone can relate to this,” she added. “We are now increasingly moving internal communications to HyperOffice social walls. Every conversation thread is right there in a single place, around the specific document or project it relates to. Having this ability to communicate more efficiently has been a game changer for us,” she concluded.