24 Free Online Collaboration Tools for Your Business

When you want to discuss new ideas, stay organized and keep up to date with communications between different departments of the company or with your customers, email has its limitations.

Collaboration is a broad concept; Online collaboration tools are integrated into a number of applications, including project management software, corporate social networking brainstorming, brainstorming, knowledge sharing and unified communications , to name a few.

If you are looking for specific tools that make it easier to collaborate on projects by sharing tasks, messages, and files, see the list of applications under online project management tools.

1. ezTalks Cloud Meeting

ezTalks Cloud Meeting is a free video conferencing software that offers HD video conferencing plus unlimited meetings to remote colleagues, customers, suppliers and partners. Irrespective of your devices, it is possible to connect to a video or an audio conference call from a Mac, PC, Android or iOS gadget. Meeting coordinators make utilization of the hearty application or screen sharing capacities to share the whole screen. ezTalks Cloud Meeting will allow you to communicate with just about anyone at any time of the day without the fear of missing another conference while on the go.

2. Bitrix24

Bitrix24 offers a full scope of coordinated effort instruments, including a social intranet, gathering and videoconferencing visit, venture and archive administration highlights, and a client relationship administration arrangement.  Offered for no more than 12 users, Bitrix24 also gives you the flexibility to host the solution on your own servers.

3. Calliflower

Calliflower was the first teleconference service on the Facebook platform. Today it is a secure, robust audio conferencing service that allows you to organize and save your group calls in an affordable way and collaborate with the document sharing feature. Some of their servers are located in Canada.

4. Coggle

Coggle is a conceptual mapping tool and a free online workspace that will help your team collaborate more effectively. It can be used on your web browser and therefore requires no downloading or installation. Coogle allows you to comment on branches and chat with your collaborators without leaving the chart you are working on.

5. Conceptboard

Conceptboard provides a flexible online workspace that simplifies collaboration between marketing and remote teams. It focuses on visual content and brainstorming activities. Something other than a whiteboard, it can accelerate imaginative work and concentrate dialogs, document sharing, errands, note taking, aggregate visit and video conferencing. Conceptboard is browser-based and is accessible from any laptop, tablet or phone connected to the Internet.

6. Confluence

Confluence is an application that centralizes all the knowledge necessary for effective collaboration. Its core features include unlimited workspaces, blogs and threads, file and hyperlink sharing, managing content permissions, and assigning tasks. Upgrading your subscription gives you access to more advanced features, such as team calendars and a knowledge base. All paid packages include a free seven-day trial.

7. Crowdbase

Crowdbase is a knowledge management platform that centralizes and organizes the knowledge of a team in a single secure location. Any member of the team can view data or links, ask questions and share files through third party integration. This way, teams can easily find and transfer information and knowledge. Packages start at 10 users and a free 30-day trial is offered.

8. Evernote

Evernote is a note-taking application that facilitates the sharing of knowledge and collaboration within a project. Because the free base version installs on up to two devices, you’ll need to purchase one of the paid plans to take advantage of more storage space and advanced features such as offline access, instant messaging Work Chat), document search, PDF annotation and presentation tools.

9. Feng Sky

Feng Sky is the cloud-based version of Feng Office, a free collaboration platform that combines all the functionality needed to manage projects, tasks and documents, as well as managing communication and collaboration with colleagues, Customers and suppliers, among others. Data may be stored on request at a Canadian data center. If you prefer, you can also host the solution on your own server or ask for help from a system integrator. Feng Sky is accessible from the web browser of any computer or mobile phone.

10. Glip

Glip simplifies teamwork with built-in chat, task, calendar, and file sharing and video conferencing, all in one place. Now integrated into the RingCentral solution, Glip was developed based on the premise that conversation is the basis for collaboration. While some call features require a subscription to RingCentral Office, Glip can be sold as an individual solution. It allows you to share files and create tasks and appointments directly from the chat stream. Thus, each user can easily see the context of professional activities and related conversations. Glip also integrates with your favorite applications and offers an attractive pricing structure.

11. Google Hangouts

Google Hangouts promotes collaboration through instant messaging, text messaging, chat groups, teleconferencing, and video conferencing. It also allows you to make free phone calls anywhere in Canada and the United States, and even works within Gmail. It is especially interesting when combined with Google Docs for sharing and editing documents. In addition, it can be installed on several types of computers, as well as on Apple and Android phones and tablets. You must have a Google+ account to access it.

12. Huddle

Huddle is a cloud-based substance and joint effort stage that offers a full scope of components incorporating record imparting to full form control, coordinated effort dashboard and shrewd suggestion innovation that consequently introduces content that interested. It is available in 15 languages. There are no free passes, but you are entitled to a 14-day trial period.

13. Igloo

Igloo was founded at the Center for International Governance Innovation in Waterloo, Ontario. It allows for the sharing of information and teamwork more effectively. There are two options: a preformatted “social intranet” that uses blogs, forums, wikis, and click-words and “like” buttons, and an extranet to share information outside your business. The intranet option is offered free of charge, but has some restrictions. The level of support you receive depends on the support contract you choose, but it is mandatory for all clients.

14. Jive-n

Jive-n is a social intranet used to inform and mobilize your mobile workers wherever they are. Designed to enhance communication and collaboration, Jive-n accelerates the integration of new employees and increases sales efficiency. This platform can be deployed in the cloud, in a traditional hosted environment or on your premises. You can also add extensions and third-party modules such as Google Docs, Microsoft SharePoint, Microsoft Office, and Microsoft Outlook. Support options vary depending on the package chosen.

15. Join.me

Join.me is one of great screen-sharing and online meeting tools recognized for its user-friendly interface, which facilitates meetings and webinars. Mobile apps for iOS and Android devices let you share documents, whiteboards and presentations wherever you are. Simple screen sharing is offered free of charge, but you have to buy a package.

16. MangoApps

MangoApps is a collaborative platform that combines social networking for employees, corporate intranets, agile project management, team collaboration and messaging tools into a single, seamless product. It can be used online or installed on a computer. MangoApps includes more than 35 ready-to-use integration functions for Box, Dropbox, Google Apps, Office 365, Twitter, LinkedIn, and more.

17. MindMeister

MindMeister is an online mapping and collaboration tool designed to foster collaboration. It gives you the ability to not only revert to an earlier version, but also assign tasks and track progress. A number of apps allow you to access and share your mind maps easily with Google Chrome and Twitter.

18. Minutes Depot

Minutes Depot is a collaborative tool that focuses on managing and sharing the corporate log book. Designed by a Canadian company that is stable in Quebec City, Minutes Depot keeps the logbook online and easily shares it with all authorized users, such as shareholders and accounting staff. It therefore greatly simplifies the creation, monitoring and electronic signature of key documents such as agendas and minutes of meetings.

19. Redbooth

Redbooth is an all-in-one collaboration and communication platform that gives you access to your group projects in real time. With shared virtual workspaces, everything – from discussions to documents and files – is easily organized in one place. Redbooth enables teams to communicate via HD videoconferencing or business chats, and even use the application to improve the efficiency of meetings in the conference room. Redbooth integrates with Evernote, Microsoft Outlook, Box, Drive, Dropbox and Zendesk tools.

20. Skype for Business

Skype for Business is integrated with Microsoft Office. That’s why you can hold all types of conversations – instant messaging, audio and video calls – organize online meetings, share screens and files in one place. Up to 250 people can attend meetings, but if you only need toll-free calls for up to 25 people, you can start with the free Skype version. Skype for Business is available as a stand-alone or as part of an Office 365 package, which includes Microsoft Office, Exchange, and SharePoint. The mobile app works on Windows phones, and on iOS and Android devices.

21. Slack

Slack is a free communication platform where you can create channels (chat rooms) that include a search function for specific projects, groups and themes. You can download files and link them to a particular channel to allow all participants to leave comments. Slack incorporates with numerous applications, including Twitter, Dropbox, Google Calendar and Zapier, which offers several reconciliation conceivable outcomes.

22. Socialcast

Socialcast is an enterprise social network that easily creates secure online communities where employees, business partners and customers can chat, post messages (e.g., status and progress reports) and include links and attachments. It is free for up to 50 users and works with Skype Enterprise.

23. Stormboard

Stormboard is an online platform for the exchange of ideas and collaboration that allows you to formulate, organize and prioritize your ideas with visual notes. You can then assign an idea to a user and match it with a due date. Designed by an Edmonton company, it uses smart models based on the best business processes and offers advanced reporting capabilities. A free version is available for up to five users.

24. Thoughtboxes

Thoughtboxes is a space that allows you to create and share “to-do lists”, notes and ideas online. You do not necessarily need a lot of functionality if you only want to organize your ideas as a virtual Post-it using any device with a web browser. Each “box” corresponds to a group of ideas and you can use the drag-and-drop function to organize them. The basic version is free, but you will need to acquire a higher version if you have to manage a lot of ideas.

Please note that this list is only a starting point and excludes applications that are neither free nor low cost. When evaluating online collaboration tools for your organization, you will probably consider many other factors.