What to Consider when Looking at Free Collaboration Tools

Are you being bombarded with emails, calls, or LinkedIn messages from sales people about their "Free Collaboration Tool Trial"? It can be overwhelming trying to figure out which free trial is going to be suit your needs within your organization. What happens if you pick the wrong solution? Here are the top things to consider when looking at free collaboration tools:

1. How quickly can you get up and running?
  • A free solution won’t do you any good if the vendor cannot deliver in a timely manner.
  • Ask yourself: What resources will be required to implement this new tool?  Is there anything to install, can your users install without administrator capabilities?

2. Does the solution meet your needs now and going forward?
  • Introducing a new application to your team that doesn’t do what they need it to do will cause you to start at the beginning again. Make sure the new solution can replace an outdated solution that doesn’t accommodate for your needs during a crisis. Keep in mind, this solution should be able to grow into your long-term strategy. 
  •  Ask yourself: If your company finds value in the solution, how likely would your company plan on keeping it?

3. Are there any hidden costs or limitation?
  • Most vendors are truly providing free services of some sort, but it's only for 30 days or 90 days. You need to read the fine print. If it’s only a 30 day trial and you end up needing it longer, then what would the costs look like? Also, you need to consider what potential limitations some free trials may have. Again, make sure the solution can accommodate your needs.Use this opportunity as an extended POC (Proof of Concept) to evaluate a new hosted collaboration platform.
  • Ask yourself: Is this the full featured solution that you would have if you purchased the solution?
4. Is this a new platform or are you unlocking features of an existing platform that you’re already using?
  • Some companies might have a collaboration suite that they’re already licensed for but don’t have enough licenses or capabilities.  See if your current vendor has an available offer that can meet your needs versus implementing something new.
  • Ask yourself: If they don't have the license or capabilities that we need, is this the right solution in the long-term? 

Still not sure what free collaboration tool is going to best fit within your organization? Contact C3 Technology Advisors today or visit our Work From Home page to speak to an expert. 


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