With eyes now focused on the 2014 FIFA World Cup, everyone will be waiting to see 32 soccer teams from across the globe play the games of their lives. The teamwork involved both on the field and behind the scenes to ensure such an event is a success relies on a huge amount of collaboration. On the field alone, 11 players all have to work towards one goal to achieve success and the same is true for the workplace.

Collaboration is a team sport. It means many different things to different people, but collaboration essentially involves a group of individuals working together across boundaries to achieve a common goal. In today’s workplace, the network of people that an individual has to work with on a regular basis extends far beyond their own organization’s four walls and includes customers, partners and contractors. One of our customers, for example, works with more than 1,000 other companies in its Huddle workspaces. For people to get their jobs done effectively and be truly productive, all relevant parties have to be able to seamlessly work together on content regardless of where they are based or the devices they are using.

The extent of external (cross-firewall) collaboration was highlighted recently in Forrester Research’s “How Collaboration Improves Customer Experience” report. The analyst house surveyed 4,827 North American and European information workers, which Forrester Research defines as those who use a computer for at least one hour a day. Of those questioned, 57% stated that they regularly communicate or collaborate with customers, colleagues or partners, and only 12% work exclusively with their colleagues.

Figures from Huddle’s client base support the fact that the majority of organizations now collaborate with external parties:

  • 85% of companies that use Huddle, use the service for external collaboration
  • 47% of organizations using Huddle, use it for external collaboration with more than 5 other organizations
  • 21.4% of companies that use Huddle use it for external collaboration with more than 10 other organizations
  • Companies that use Huddle, use it to collaborate with people from eight other organizations on average

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