How To Know Which Intranet/Collaboration Service Is For You: An Insider’s Simple But Effective Tip

remindo.jpgA few weeks ago, I was emailed about yet another collaboration/Internet service – Remindo. Prateek Dubey, Marketing Manager had emailed me and suggested I check it out. Many of the services I look at are based in Silicon Valley (or Alley). This one is based in Mumbai.
The service looks good but frankly, at first blush, there are dozens of other services that could compete equally well: HyperOffice, WebOffice, Google Apps (which I use), and so many others.
I wanted to know: what made Remindo different from its numerous competition? Prateek shared this:
Imagine life before facebook. You had to reach out to your friends and family to find out what was going on in their lives – and if you didn’t bother – you would never find out. Now you just log in and you are passively updated on everything that’s going on with them. Its a subtle difference, but has a huge impact on your social life.

We have done something similar with the live activity stream in Remindo. Updates from all work activities reach you, instead of you having to follow up individually with team members. Truth is, Remindo is more of a senior managers’ tool than anything else.
Very soon we are introducing a feature in which people will be able to hold discussions on milestones/tasks and even exchange large files under the same thread. This is potentially game changing because it fits so well with how people like to communicate and collaborate in real life (and even facebook!)

I wondered how can a busy business professional know which service is best for them. How can they know which service is best for their company?
Prateek readily acknowledged that the field of collaboration/Intranet’s is a crowded space, but he said that it all comes down to the first 10 minutes of using the system.
He said that, If half of your team says “this is simple” and start having fun almost immediately, you know you have a winner on your hands. Nothing is more frustrating than paying for a software and later finding out that you have to keep pushing your team to use it.
The third tip he gave was to watch out for how responsive and friendly the support staff are – even in the free versions. Simply because no software is perfect or will ever be, but when things go wrong, knowing that there are thoughtful people on the other side will really put your mind at ease. They will never stop fanatically improving the product and they would love to hear from you.