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The future of business file sharing

Do Cloud apps mean simple file sharing just isn’t enough?

Over the last few years, it has become commonplace to share files using the Cloud.  It’s easy to see why. It cuts down on server costs, files are accessible from anywhere, you can share information without having to worry about email size or firewalls, and it’s simple to share business documents with external stakeholders.

For all these benefits, some businesses have been reluctant to entrust their data to the Cloud. But this is now changing — advances in security mean that more and more organisations are incorporating Cloud file sharing into the way they work.

Even those businesses that don’t sanction the practice increasingly find employees are bypassing their IT departments and signing up to Cloud file sharing solutions on their own initiative.

It’s fair to say that we’re at a tipping point when it comes to business file sharing. But the irony is that many companies — now reassured that file sharing is secure — are opting for outdated solutions for sharing information.

Beyond simple business file sharing

What’s changed is the growth and improvement in Cloud-based tools. Where it was once a challenge to offer a secure file sharing solution, secure and multi-functional collaboration software packages are now commonplace.

These not only allow you to share your documents, but allow you to use online tools to work on them with internal and external partners.

This means you don’t have to ensure all users of your file sharing system have the same third party software, such as project management packages, databases, blogging software and more. Instead, these are all included within the collaboration software itself — you don’t just get to share the information you need, but you have the tools to work on it in tandem.

To give a few examples, online collaboration software will not only have file sharing at its heart, but it can give you access to:

  • Archived files and backups
  • Special collaborative documents that multiple users can edit, without ever having to make a duplicate copy
  • Commenting and approval systems for each file or item of data 
  • Automatic email updates whenever a document has been altered by a team member 
  • Flexible access privileges that make team and external working simple and secure 
  • Integration with project management tools, databases, survey software, blogging tools, task lists, spreadsheet editors and more.

Whether you’re using an office PC, or logging in from the train using your tablet, you immediately have all the tools you need to work with colleagues and partners. No more gaps in your workflow — you can carry all the productivity tools you need with you, as long as you have an internet enabled browser.

Over the coming years, we believe many businesses will adopt simple file sharing systems when what they really needed was a collaboration solution. Smart business leaders have already realised that the future of file sharing involves adding Cloud-based tools into the mix — and they’re set to enjoy a major advantage until the rest of the market catches up.

So if you’re planning to introduce Cloud file sharing to your business, ask yourself what extra productivity it will bring to your business. For further insights, download our free guide Beyond Business File Sharing – 8 features that take you further below. After all, it’s not just sharing information that brings productivity to your work — it’s what you do with it!

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