Online tools for creative teams are essential for success. As a web-based creative or at least one who does a lot of your work through the internet, it is likely that, at some point, you will have the chance to take advantage of a collaborative opportunity. It might be working on a single project or a longer-term partnership that helps two or more creatives strengthen one another’s efforts. But what is the benefit of having such a relationship based online rather than simply getting in touch over the phone or in-person? Here are just a few ways.
Quicker, smarter communication
Ideas might be going off in your brain at a rate of a thousand per minute, but when it comes to collaborating, you need to be able to share those ideas, as well as to communicate any needs you might have to your allied creators. To that end, making use of team communication software like slack, Trello or Chanty can ensure that everyone is communicating in the same place and always on the same page. If you lose track of how you’re communicating to different members of the partnership, it can become rife with misunderstandings and errors.
An eye on each other’s work
Sometimes, simply trying to tell someone about an idea or your progress isn’t a great way to effectively collaborate. Sometimes, it’s better for them to get a good look for themselves as you explain it. To that end, there are a host of software solutions that allow for screen sharing across multiple devices. As such, your creative collaborators can take a look at exactly what you’re working on, allowing them to offer feedback or, in some cases, allow them to directly control your device to make their own input. This technique is something I often use as I can control the information flow and talk at the same time to keep it as clear as I want. Just sending a PDF tends to people just keep reading ahead and such.
Sharing resources with ease
You might not want your allies to be looking directly over your shoulder when you’re working, but it might be a hassle to have to constantly grant and wait for permission to be able to access what are supposed to be shared resources. Rather than having an increasingly complicated web of email attachments going back and forth, tools like https://www.templafy.com/digital-asset-management/ can make it a lot easier for people to share, store, and edit shared resources. So long as the person logging into the service has the right credentials, they can access everything they need without having to bother anyone else. Other popular services like this is Dropbox or Googles different options.
Creating a shared-knowledge base
To keep the freelance creative happy, then it’s important to make sure that everyone is able to share knowledge freely and to create a shared database where that knowledge can easily be found. The aforementioned communication software not only allows for managing different conversations, but different notes can be shared and pinned to conversations that other members of the chat or group can refer to at any time. Another way to better share knowledge is to have members of the team hold private webinars through facetime technology that others can sit in on, too.
Brainstorming and designing
When it comes to the actual planning of collaborative projects, then the project management software mentioned below in the next section, is likely to be the solution that you’re after. However, before they get more organized, creatives tend to work with a flow that they can then pick more solid ideas from. As such, brainstorming software such as Mural or SimpleMind can allow you and members of the team to throw up ideas, serving as a canvas to better discuss plans from, whittling them down until you find the ideas that work for everyone involved. Mind maps is a tool I use very often, both in professional projects and for personal. I use them for idea making, goals and setting a structure. Using mind maps as an online tools for creative teams is something I highly recommended!
Tracking projects together
Aside from the creative work that has to be done together, let’s not forget the practical and administrative tasks that keep any collaborative project afloat. If someone isn’t pulling their weight here, it can drag the whole collaboration down. As such, project management tools such as Trello can play a big role in making sure everyone else is playing their role, too. Members of the team can take a look at the project map, seeing what everyone should be doing, allowing them to hold one another accountable, and to lend assistance where needed more quickly.
If you’re looking for a fruitful collaborative relationship with another creative, then it’s wise to have an organized approach to how you are going to work together. This is precisely what the right suite of digital and internet-based tools can offer you. You need to get all parties to agree to use them, of course, but if you can, it can dramatically improve collaboration and communication. If you have your own favorite online tools for your creative teams, feel free to share them in the comments bellow!