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Businesses are increasingly shifting towards the virtual trend, as most business operations are now being conducted online. Bookkeeping and budgeting are also often performed through popular apps and tools available online. The low setup costs and environmental concerns have driven businesses towards adopting the paperless office trend.

One of the major obstacles that a business owner faces when running a virtual company is the effective engagement of employees to boost productivity levels. According to Michael Watkins, author of the First 90 Days, “Communication on virtual teams is often less frequent and always is less rich than face-to-face interaction, which provides more contextual cues and information about emotional states — such as engagement or lack thereof. The only way to avoid the pitfalls is to be extremely clear and disciplined about how the team will communicate.”

Fortunately, the advancements in technology have led to the elimination of various communication barriers that halt the company’s progress. Here, we have compiled the best communication tools and messaging programs available online that can help businesses establish strong communication with their employees. Effective messaging programs allow you to keep all of your communication with the team in one place.

1. Slack

Slack is one of the most popular team chat apps on the online market. It was launched in 2013 by the same team that created Flikr. Since its launch, it has become one of the most popular group chat apps.

Slack does not only offer exceptional chatting facilities, it has an extraordinary tool known as Slackbot that acts as your personal reminder. You can set any type of reminder on Slackbot. It offers customizability and flexibility to its users, so you can set your own personalized themes. It hosts powerful emoticons that will add a lively feel to your conversations. The Slackbot tool has led to the immense popularity of bots over the past few years. It offers you the ability to start projects, approve an invoice and crunch numbers. Slack has recently introduced an option where the user can turn an ordinary message into a mini-channel relating to one topic.

You can form multiple teams to keep office groups, reading groups and other groups separate.

Furthermore, it offers you the ability to invent your own chat bots through its integrations. It works on IOS, Android, Windows, Linux, and Mac, and comes at a price of around $8 per month.

2. HipChat

HipChat is a popular messaging program that offers incredible features to its users. It allows you easy and fast access to your group chats, enabling you to remain in touch with your teams wherever you go. You can form separate chat rooms on HipChat, which could either be public or private. If you want to invite a contact into a particular chat room, you can send them a link.

If you are looking for an app that offers fast messaging, HipChat is an ideal option. HipChat offers Trello and JIRA integrations, enabling you to turn your message into a Trello card or share updates regarding JIRA projects on your conversations. It offers a simple user interface, so it is easier for users to adapt to the application. The team that invented HipChat also launched Stride, which allows you to conduct video and audio calls, along with screen sharing for the easy management of remote teams.

3. Twist

If you are looking for an app that offers threaded conversations, Twist is an ideal option. It is often very easy to miss messages that pop up in a general chat session and that is exactly why Twist turns the conversations into a thread, allowing you to track each message. This ensures that you do not miss out on any important information. If you want to say something, you will either have to post your comment on an existing thread or make a new one. It also offers a traditional chat experience through the ‘Messages’ tab. This allows you to send direct messages to your contacts. It comes at a price of around $6 per month. Plus, you can utilize the integrations to create your own chat bots.

These are the top 3 messaging programs that allow you to manage your remote teams in an effective manner. Other popular team chat apps include Microsoft Teams, Flock, Discord, Cisco Spark, Mattermost, ChatWork, Ryver, Zoho Chat, Google Hangouts Chat, etc.

Check out America's Best Bookkeepers
About Complete Controller® – America’s Bookkeeping Experts Complete Controller is the Nation’s Leader in virtual accounting, providing services to businesses and households alike. Utilizing Complete Controller’s technology, clients gain access to a cloud-hosted desktop where their entire team and tax accountant may access the QuickBooks file and critical financial documents in an efficient and secure environment. Complete Controller’s team of  US based accounting professionals are certified QuickBooksTMProAdvisor’s providing bookkeeping and controller services including training, full or partial-service bookkeeping, cash-flow management, budgeting and forecasting, vendor and receivables management, process and controls advisement, and customized reporting. Offering flat rate pricing, Complete Controller is the most cost effective expert accounting solution for business, family office, trusts, and households of any size or complexity.

 

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The workplace is quickly transforming from physical office spaces where employees interact face to face to digital workplaces. Business virtualization has drastically changed how employees communicate within the workplace. Today, the virtualized digital workplace allows a wide range of communication options for companies.

Using tools such as instant messaging is the best way to have effective communication in the workplace. Technology can make communication within the workplace easy. For example, using instant messaging instead of email streamlines the communication process.

Creating an Effective Digital Workplace

It is important for companies to focus on creating a digital workplace that is effective and easy for employees to communicate. Organizational communication must be based on a holistic set of communication channels. It should have tools and resources that enhances employees productivity and allows them to work coherently.

Messaging as an Effective Communication Tool for Virtualized Workplace

Effective communication is possible by including instant messaging as a communication tool. This messaging provides a collaborative space for employees where they can use different options to chat with their co-workers. Messaging is perceived as one of the most useful business communication tools that helps keep teams together.

Messaging is a useful tool for communication between busy employees and managers. It makes it easier for employees, supervisors, and managers to share information about projects in real time, which indicates that the virtualization of a business is beneficial in the short and long term.

Messaging is ideal for businesses that operate in different geographical locations. A difference in time zones is one of the biggest challenges for companies. However, messaging helps in establishing an efficient communication channel that bridges the gap between each time zone. Messaging has its benefits because it helps employees stay in contact with one another in real time.

Benefits of Using Messaging in Your Business

When companies use messaging programs, it provides businesses with a lot of benefits. Some of the main benefits are discussed here:

Reduces Communication Time

Messages are a super fast way of communicating with your peers. It reduces the internal churn of emails and voicemail. When your company has an interactive messaging system in place, it does not require the manager or supervisor to visit their employees.

 Easier to Contact Remotely Located Employees

Business virtualization is becoming a new trend. The system of instant messaging makes it easier for managers to stay in contact with employees and fellow managers located in a different country and time zone. It helps employees stay connected with suppliers and customers. Customers can contact a company with their complaints efficiently if they are using messaging services provided on an official website. Messaging in the organization gives business the added benefit of making the employees more productive, as they receive important instructions promptly. The operations are more agile and efficient without any extra costs.

Less Intrusive than a Phone Call

Messaging for your business is less intrusive than a phone call. It is much faster than an email. A significant benefit of using a messaging system in your business is that it allows managers or supervisors to detect the presence of their employees in a digital workplace.

A status message is an elaborate tool of messaging that a user can change according to their needs. It is an efficient way to check which employee is available. The ability to detect the presence of an employee is a valuable tool for a company; it is a faster way to resolve issues as they arise. Managers find messaging an essential medium for getting feedback and information from their staff.

Input from Different Experts

The best value of instant messaging comes from collecting information from different people located in different locations. It helps in speeding up the slow and inclined processes. Instant messaging helps greatly reduce response time. Thanks to messaging in the virtualized workplace, methods are speedy and errors in communication have significantly decreased. Experts can continuously monitor a project and alert employees when they see a mistake.

Brief and To the Point Communication

The nature of messaging is to be concise and to the point. The messages are short, making it easier for employees to interact, communicate, and share information about a project. A messaging system is the best alternative to email. Employees or managers can forget to check their email, but instant messaging reduces wait time considerably.

Check out America's Best Bookkeepers
About Complete Controller® – America’s Bookkeeping Experts Complete Controller is the Nation’s Leader in virtual accounting, providing services to businesses and households alike. Utilizing Complete Controller’s technology, clients gain access to a cloud-hosted desktop where their entire team and tax accountant may access the QuickBooks file and critical financial documents in an efficient and secure environment. Complete Controller’s team of  US based accounting professionals are certified QuickBooksTMProAdvisor’s providing bookkeeping and controller services including training, full or partial-service bookkeeping, cash-flow management, budgeting and forecasting, vendor and receivables management, process and controls advisement, and customized reporting. Offering flat rate pricing, Complete Controller is the most cost effective expert accounting solution for business, family office, trusts, and households of any size or complexity.