Top Internal Communication and Collaboration Tools

From text-only chat to live video calls, these programs stand out as powerful and affordable solutions for any small business looking to ensure employees and managers can easily keep in touch with one another.

  1. BlueJeans by Verizon
    Everyone has a preferred way of attending online meetings. BlueJeans, a cloud-based video communications platform, gives attendees the flexibility of joining video conferences using a web browser, desktop app, or mobile phone, all while making meetings more productive with a wide range of collaboration features that are available across platforms. These include the ability to host meetings in conference rooms and town halls, share screens, and record meetings.

BlueJeans makes it easy to combine workflows. For instance, you can schedule meetings with Outlook and Google Calendar and integrate the software with other popular business apps and services. All content is transmitted with AES-GCM 256-bit encryption, and conversations can benefit from BlueJeans’ real-time closed captioning for hearing-impaired users. Users who don’t have video- or audio-capable devices can phone in to join meetings.

Plans for BlueJeans Meetings start at $9.99 per host per month if billed annually. The Pro version, which supports up to 75 meeting participants, starts at $12.49 per host per month if billed annually. [Could your business benefit from video conferencing? If so, check out the video conference services we recommend for small businesses.]

  1. Windstream Enterprise OfficeSuite UC
    Are your employees always on the go? OfficeSuite UC is a 100% cloud-based UCaaS (unified communications as a service) system that’s fully accessible anytime, anywhere. In addition to audio, web and video conferencing, OfficeSuite offers unlimited nationwide calling, toll-free phone service, and digital faxing. It also has useful mobility features: mobile twinning, which makes all incoming calls ring your desk and mobile phone simultaneously; hotdesking to enable incoming and outgoing calls from any phone; and virtual voicemail, allowing you to receive notifications and messages from any phone, online, or by email.

Built into OfficeSuite UC are integrations with third-party applications like Salesforce, Skype, Google’s G Suite, Slack and Microsoft Teams. UC also features contact center services to help users create queues for calls and chats, as well as live and historical agent activity and the ability to record calls. Contact Windstream Enterprise for pricing information.

  1. Cisco Webex
    Businesses that rely heavily on meetings need full-featured communications software. Cisco’s Webex offers HD video conferences with collaboration and file-sharing capabilities for all types of meetings, including presentations, sales demos, online training sessions, web-based events, staff meetings and remote tech support.

Webex is fully accessible on mobile devices with the Webex mobile app for iPhone, iPad, Android and BlackBerry. The basic version of Webex is free and supports up to 100 meeting participants, but it’s limited to a single user, and meetings can only last up to 50 minutes. Premium versions start at $14.95 a month and include phone call-ins, file transfers, 5GB of cloud recording storage and live 24/7 support.