If ever there was a good time to get feedback on enterprise employee sentiment on workplace collaboration software, it’s now. Unify Square on Tuesday released a report examining the most utilized features across workplace workstream collaboration application platforms, app usage trends and how they’re impacting productivity, employee behavior, security and more.
A significant key finding in the “Overcoming Challenges of Workstream Collaboration” report is that employees use collaboration applications in both expected and unexpected ways, indicating more of a love than hate relationship with the digital workplace. Unify Square, a collaboration and communication management platform vendor, queried more than 500 enterprise employees from late January to early February. The survey primarily looks at the use of collaboration software within the business, but also answers questions about remote usage.
Unify Square’s survey looks at the workstream collaboration (WSC) category, and for purposes of its report views the unified communications (UC) market merging with WSC as digital workplace communications evolve. WCS goes beyond UC, which integrates telephony, digital meeting solutions, IM, email and voicemail, enabling teams to communicate in context by integrating chat, voice, video and meetings with business workflows and external applications.
The report notes that WSC functionality includes: persistent chat, awareness and discovery functionality; group collaboration that can be split into public and private channels, and/or organized by topic; integration with other applications and platforms, including existing UC and bots; enterprise-wide scalability, and channel/workspace connectivity between organizations; and persistent file sharing and document management.
Other key findings in the report include:
- Thirty-nine percent agree that one of the chief benefits of collaboration apps is fewer emails, yet 74% admitted they haven’t seen a significant decrease in emails since they started using these apps.
- Forty-three percent believe that preventing distraction caused by collaboration apps is a shared responsibility between themselves and management.
- Forty percent wish organizations enforced stricter rules around collaboration app usage; nearly 60% believe that stricter rules would help improve work-life balance, and 42% believe a more enforced set of rules would help set expectations on usage for employees.
- Enterprise workers in the tech industry download collaboration apps for personal use without IT’s approval 37% more than any other industry.
The report finds that, today, approximately 90% of enterprises use some type of collaboration platform, for internal communications. The most preferred collaboration platforms among respondents: Microsoft Teams (31%), Microsoft Skype for Business (27%), Google Chat (21%), Cisco WebEx Teams (15%), and Zoom (13%).
The worldwide market for social software and collaboration in the workplace is expected to grow from about $2.7 billion in 2018 to $4.8 billion by 2023, according to Gartner.