With the majority of us working from home, or in some cases partially doing so, it has never been as crucial to make sure that communication your team is missing out on from now being in the office, is being maintained virtually.
To that end, we all have a number of chat apps open on our computers and browsers and sometimes just the management of these functions is a job in itself, especially as some chat providers offer services that cater to a specific need, while others do some things more efficiently.
This leads to a great deal of our overall communication perhaps suffering during these tough times and as such, you’d do well to check out all the options available to you and your colleagues.
With this in mind, here is a round-up of five top chat apps you should consider using at your workplace.
If you want a chat app that works seamlessly with other apps and services (calendar, notes, and more) then Spike offers this in abundance. Frankly, if you were an alien who landed on earth without a clue as to how any tech worked, you’d still be able to make use of Spike’s interface, that’s how intuitive their service is.
We particularly like the way Spike blends all your communication in one place, which ably assists your efforts to bring your tasks together in one easy-to-manage space. This helps reduce the clutter that can quickly mount.
Spike works on all major platforms and is aesthetically pleasing as well as hugely effective, it’s style AND substance rolled into one. For this reason, we’d rate it as perhaps one of the best Slack alternatives around.
Though originally built with gamers as its bread and butter, Discord has become an increasingly popular option for workplace communication.
The Discord service isn’t necessarily a cut above the rest but the key feature, and one that offers its users a real additional benefit is the always-in audio that has proven very useful during the coronavirus pandemic.
This feature has allowed office communication to actually feel a little like the ‘real thing’, with users getting to experience as close to a real service as possible, and the service is pretty much free. With additional priced options not being all that relevant for the office environment anyway.
Not as well known as the previous two chat apps, Chanty is beginning to get noticed in the crowded marketplace that is the chat app industry.
Chanty’s messaging app uses AI tech to constantly improve the service offered and we particularly like that the whole platform is very much project-based, which is kind of where a great deal of office communication occurs.
One downside comes from the fact that the free service offered by Chanty doesn’t offer the full suite of tools you’ll get from signing-up as a paid user.
Workplace by Facebook
As part of Facebook’s ongoing push for world domination, they offer a chat app by the name of Workplace and it’s an interesting option your business could benefit from.
Perhaps unsurprisingly Workplace by Facebook offers a very ‘social-media orientated style of office communication, with a type of news feed, personal pages, and private as well as public chats.
You also have a great option here with their virtual live-streaming events, acting as a possible alternative to the dreaded Zoom. This chat app ticks many boxes though is not available on a free-basis.
These guys have been operating since 2014 and as such are a fairly mature player in the market and as such their chat app project is a smooth and pleasant affair. Flock is fast, effective and the free service is good enough to use without considering forking out for the paid option.
Flock is well integrated with a number of the third-party partners you no doubt spent most of your work-days in front of, i.e. JIRA, Asana, and Google calendar. So basically you can look to condense your operations to within one platform.
It’s a very user-friendly option and one that is growing steadily in the industry and could well be an option for your business to consider as a company-wide alternative to whatever you currently use.
In many ways, HipChat looks, and feels, like Slack and that isn’t necessarily a bad thing as HipChat is in some ways smoother than the competitor they are so clearly attempting to outdo.
HipChat offers you a chat room, drag and drops file-sharing and a pretty stable video chat facility that may actually be better than that offered by Slack.
As with Slack, HipChat integrates well with most third-party products and their free option is pretty solid, though their paid service is one that you might want to unlock in order to feel the real benefit of this chat app provider.
Even prior to the COVID-19 crisis there was a growing push towards home working, in some countries this is more prevalent than others, and now one can imagine that being out of the office will become a reality for most of us.
Workplaces will have to adjust accordingly and the coming months could be an ideal time to work out which service works best for your company’s needs and finding a great chat app that seamlessly brings your workers closer than ever may well be worth its weight in gold.
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