Companies use Instant messaging (IM) and chat software to facilitate communication between their staff members who may be located in different places and countries. Popular websites such as Facebook offer instant chat services for free. Good quality IM solutions provide useful features such as video calling, web conferencing, and VoIP. Advanced platforms offer IP radio, IPTV, and desktop sharing tools. Large enterprises have greater communication needs and therefore they typically invest in installing an internal IM server to serve their thousands of employees. You can read our detailed reviews of leading products in this category including the current anointed topper Slack.
Businesses nowadays base decisions on relaying real-time information back and forth, which is exactly how instant messaging & chatting became a top corporate utility. The nature of this software is a social-networking one, but unlike private communication, it helps enterprise collaboration, and supports daily business routines.
Instant messaging tools have the distinctive advantage of displaying relevant information in no time, which keeps business parties connected wherever they are. In that way, instant messaging tools extend a business’s online network, and turn collaboration into a remarkable business adventure (unlike conventional office interactions with professional tone, which are de-motivating, to say the least).
The best part of the adventure is that software markets are packed with outstanding platforms and it won’t be difficult to capture the best Instant Messaging software tools for enterprises, medium and small businesses.
A good way to start your search for the best chat software programs is to register for the free trials or demo offered by leading instant messaging software for business providers. This will give you a chance to test drive their key features free of cost and a general comparison of different products. You can register for the free trials of the following list of apps that have received the highest SmartScore rankings and user satisfaction rating in our instant messaging & chat software reviews: Jive reviews, Skype, and Jabber.
When choosing an IM program, make sure it has all of these features:
Long story short, best chat software should enable three activities: Private chat; sending/receiving files; and integration. The ‘heavy’ part of choosing one will be to focus on tiny nuances, because that’s what distinguishes one system from the other. Being completely honest, all IMs are built on the same concept and similar practice, which is why the decisive factor is almost always their appearance.
Let’s take a deeper look at the features you should expect from these systems:
Our detailed comparisons show that there are a lot of business benefits to be related to IM software, all because of the common conception that people need to be ‘put’ in one place when sharing their assignments. These systems unite strangers, build teams and coalitions, and come up with original solutions because few heads reason better than one head. At a corporate level, companies get to collaborate and learn from each other, which is priceless in terms of savings and competition.
In bits and pieces, this is what you will get from a reliable IM program:
There aren’t almost any downsides to connecting people and letting them communicate, unless you’re communicating with the wrong person.
Sharing information via IM services is a great idea for colleagues and business associates, but it can be misused in many ways if it falls into the wrong hands. Internet hackers won’t stop trying to use this ‘open port’ to your computer, and to extract sensitive and valuable information from it. What makes the problem worse is that messages can be intercepted without anyone having a clue about it, and you can only imagine what type of damage this could cause to your company. Therefore, take care!
Most IM systems are free, based on the vendors’ assumption that you’re going to buy extra sets of freebies and emoticons, or pay for security and customization. Free doesn’t have to mean insecure or low quality – browsing the web for some time will show you that there are many that do an excellent job without costing anything.
The paid ones, on the other hand, have more advanced features, high-priority support, and a stronger security policy, as they grant access only to registered users. Most of the time, vendors sell one-time licenses for unlimited usage, and they accept all payment options (bank wire transfers included). The price depends on the number of users/observers you want to include, and varies between $10 and $1000.
Post by Alex Hillsberg