Friday, September 02, 2005





Groupware Proves to Be a Versatile Employee








Information Technology

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Groupware Proves to Be a Versatile Employee

Author: Joe Miller



Groupware



Groupware is a software or hardware that manages documents on which organizations and groups collaborate. Groupware, of some form or another, has become a much sought after technology among businesses. Each groupware package includes tools which are meant to meet the needs of a business. Don�t be alarmed that when your business begins its search for a groupware package that 5,590,000 indexed pages will greet you on Google, 3,820,000 on Yahoo, and 950,316 on MSN. The fact is the market knows that your business needs a groupware package.

In today�s Information Age, business collaboration is only harnessed by the speed and efficiency of its technology. Businesses, large and small, maintain some sort of groupware technology in order to manage document sharing quickly and efficiently. Since groupware is meant to manage documents on which organizations and groups collaborate, the groupware package you choose must be able to work the way your business does.

Thomas Edison once said, �There ain�t no rules around here. We�re just trying to accomplish something.� Whether we like it or not, this is the case in much, if not most, of business collaboration. In other words, the ideal collaboration process would be organized into a regular process, and records of drafts would be stored in files in a way that you would always know where they are. But, the real collaboration process generally involves an ad hoc process of emails whirling back and forth in a cyclone of copies and drafts, saved across multiple email accounts and hard drives. When deadlines draw near and it�s time to merge the changes, it is almost impossible to organize drafts and records in order to have an accurate point of reference.

A Versatile Employee



When deadlines come due, the versatile survive. Businesses need a document manager that can handle the ad hoc jumble that accompanies document collaboration and groupware. Digital Thread technology has stepped up to the challenge and proven itself to be one of your most versatile employees.

Since documents are saved across multiple emails and hard drives by multiple users, businesses need groupware that tracks documents across multiple emails and hard drives and works with multiple users. Groupware with Digital Thread technology is able to do that. Digital Thread also creates digital signatures each time an email is opened with a new draft attached, telling you where it is saved and when the last set of changes were made. When it comes to bringing everything together in the end, Digital Thread creates a version history flow chart and displays merging options.

There is a way to sift through the millions of groupware packages available, and to find technology that works for your business. Because businesses need to manage the ad hoc nature of document collaboration, they need to search for a content management tool, or groupware that is built specifically for ad hoc document management.


About the Author

Joe Miller is an author of informational articles and Online Advertisements on business software. View Informational Articles on Groupware.

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Groupware Proves to Be a Versatile Employee
Groupware Groupware is a software or hardware that manages documents on which organizations and groups collaborate Groupware of some form or another has become a much sought after technology among businesses Each groupware package includes tools which are meant to meet

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Groupware as a Document Manager: Collaboration Series #3








Information Technology

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Groupware as a Document Manager: Collaboration Series #3

Author: Joe Miller



This article is the third of a series of articles exploring specific aspects of groupware. The brief informational articles in this series discuss some of the technologies associated with groupware, as well as some of the characteristics of groupware. Some of these characteristics may go hand in hand with business collaborative needs. Other characteristics go beyond what some groupware providers have to offer. The purpose of these articles is to equip the groupware user or investigator with helpful knowledge about the product in order to enable more effective use or to lead the investigator to the groupware service he or she is looking for. This third article explores groupware as a document manager, and provokes a critical approach to finding the right groupware to meet your business�s needs.

A good litmus test to determine the value of groupware as a document manager consists of the four A�s: Ad Hoc Management, Accountability, Accessibility, and Affordability.

Is Groupware a Document Manager able to Handle Ad Hoc Collaboration?

A document manager is organizational software that tracks and organizes documents. In today�s fast-paced business world, most of the document collaboration that takes place is ad hoc. In other words, documents are continuously fired back and forth in B to B and B to C communication, consisting of multiple individuals. As drafts of documents and presentations are passed back and forth, they are archived in email boxes, saved on hard drives, and passed through servers. If groupware is to be considered an effective document manager, it mush somehow be able to track and manage documents, even in an ad hoc setting.

Is Groupware an Accountable Document Manager?

In other words, as a document manager, can groupware account for the documents and their versions? Can it answer the who, what, when, where, and how questions that inevitably arise? Finding groupware that utilizes Digital Thread technology informs users where a document is saved and which version they are viewing. All tracking information is then collected into a digital flow chart displaying the version history of the document.

Is Groupware an Accessible Document Manager?

Often, document manager software systems require IT infrastructure and limited usability. Unless everyone with whom a user collaborates is a user too, the groupware isn�t very beneficial. However, groupware technology uses existing IT infrastructure and opens up accessibility to everyone with whom a user collaborates. Digital Thread still ties together document versions made by non users. Non-users receive digital signatures with attached document versions. Non-users cannot, however, access a version history, nor can they receive digital signatures in projects with other non-users.

Is Groupware an Affordable Document Manager?

The easy answer to that is �yes, it can be.� In other words, groupware packages are produced in the business market in the millions. Just check out the search engine results page of any search engine after searching �groupware.� As of today, Google results include 4,870,000 indexed pages, Yahoo yields 4,820,000 indexed pages, and MSN yields 961,866 indexed pages.

Sifting through these results is impossible, though this article hopes to simplify that process through helpful information about effective features and technologies needed to meet today�s business needs without costing too much. Groupware without an expensive IT infrastructure is available with simple installation and affordable set up. The cost of time, training, and setup are minimal. Groupware is meant to work for the business. Don�t get stuck looking for products that work the other way around.


About the Author

Joe Miller is an online advertiser and author of informational articles on business software. More information on Groupware or Document Manager is available at NextPage.com.

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