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Being able to access a platform where you can work together as a whole team is important, especially when it comes to a new project. This is especially the case for software development teams that work with tight deadlines, countless variables and conditions that need to be met. In short, online collaboration is the craft of efficiently communicating with your team while working on a project.
Development teams need to understand every aspect of the product they are building, and ultimately, aim to create a finished product that is as useful and enjoyable to the end customer as it can be. But as we already know, every project can be as successful as its planning, organization and teamwork. It’s nearly impossible to achieve all of that without some sort of collaboration tool, as it offers many benefits that ease every step of the process.
Here’s what a collaboration tool can provide you:
But even if you know the main benefits of choosing the right collaboration tool, we still have to admit that different tools offer different features and solve different problems. So, according to him, the first thing you need to do is identify the problems that your team is facing and move on from there. Once you understand the problem areas, you’ll have a much easier time choosing the right equipment for you and your team.
In the spirit of the same, we have compiled a list of the best online collaboration tools for developers. They all offer different features, so there’s sure to be one here that will suit your team and your style of work. These are in no particular order, and the top choice depends entirely on your style of work and the requirement of the team.
There is virtually no team alive that hasn’t heard of this tool. Trello is one of the best-known collaboration tools all over the world, if not the most famous, and we can say with confidence that it has earned its place fair and class. Trello can quite simply function as your ultimate to-do list, but where its power really lies is in its vast customization options. This can work well for both large and small teams; Everything depends on how you set up and organize the workload.
The entire platform has a basic main board where you can get an overview of everything that needs to be done and the tasks assigned to each employee or team. This is also where you’ll find your productivity metrics, schedule, calendar, and more. The basic organizational system of Trello is the so-called “card”. Assign a task, color code it to know which category it fits into, share it with teammates and get a full range of useful collaboration features such as; Team chat, cooperative editing, and more.
Not only can Trello help you organize, but it’s also easy to integrate it with any other tools your team might need to complete the project effectively. Aside from the features we offer, one of the main reasons we’re taking this number one spot is because you can get it for free. Of course, there are paid-for plans that larger teams may need, but even in that case, it is very affordable.
Jira is a collaboration tool specially designed with software developers in mind. Like many other tools of this kind, Jira allows you to plan tasks by assigning them to your team. But, it also offers some additional benefits that specifically help developers. You can use it to track active sprints and sort your projects by stage of development. A special tab is included where you will be able to view all the software you are working on as well as track their release dates and completion rates.
Since the team behind this software is well aware of the fact that each team has a unique way of shipping software, they included some pre-built workflow “templates” as well as the possibility to import their own Is. Using Jira, you will be able to ship software faster and integrate the entire workflow with an existing roadmap. There are also separate code repositories that come with the tool, so you’ll never lose track of anything, nor a line of code left unneeded.
The basic version is also completely free, but it limits you to ten users and lacks some features that could make it a perfect choice for your business. However, when things go awry, even the paid plans won’t cost you an arm and a leg.
GitHub is open-source software that really needs no introduction. Next to Trello, it is probably one of the most well-known collaboration tools for developers. With GitHub, teams can quickly add co-authors to a single commit, as well as undo casual ones, and see who’s responsible for developing every piece of software. There are dedicated dashboards where you can view every open pull request, whether they are from upstream branches or forks as if they were part of a local branch. Very clear, huh?
One of the latest additions to GitHub is syntax highlight. This feature allows your team to be highlighted when viewed differently, and it also works on different programming languages. Apart from these options, GitHub also sports several other useful features such as the ability to update vulnerabilities automatically, shell integration, extended image diff support, and many more.
Considering the fact that GitHub is open-source software, it may lack some of the premium collaboration features that other tools offer. But, since it was primarily built for developers, it also has some features that no other tool can offer. Plus, it’s constantly being upgraded, so whatever it may lack now, it probably will in the future.
The fourth tool on our list is Confluence, and it comes from the same mind that gave us both Trello and Jira, so there’s no doubt in our mind that it will be the perfect tool for many teams. The basic interface is intuitive and allows users to access anyone by gathering their knowledge in one place and creating a board of easy-to-find answers. Using it, creating meetings and roadmaps becomes easier than ever, as it can all be done with just a click.
Confluence is truly versatile and has pre-built templates for project management, strategic planning, and productivity. This tool works hard, so you don’t need it. By eliminating all the tedious little tasks that you would normally have to do yourself, you’ll save time and be able to spend it elsewhere – possibly creating software.
Workaholics who can’t take their mind off their work will also be happy to know that Confluence offers a mobile version, so there’s a way to still stay active and collaborate with your team even on the go. Integration with other tools is also not a problem if you choose this software. There are so many ready-made ones available like Slack, Google Drive, Dropbox, Trello etc.
While these tools are the best, in our opinion, there are many others that can make work more manageable for the development team, but they are small-scale and not all-round.
We still think they are great for what they do, but as far as full collaboration is concerned, they should be used in conjunction with some other tool.
Google Suite – This tool provides some useful features for professionals working in teams and can help you create more efficient, well-managed workflows. It’s easy to connect to other Google tools you may already be using, and it offers some great security options.
RingCentral – RingCentral is primarily a well-rounded communication tool, but integrating it with a tool like Trello can really turn it into a full-fledged collaboration platform.
BitBucket – BitBucket is slightly smaller in scale, and its main function is to facilitate collaboration when working on source code. While handy, it’s probably best used in conjunction with other tools like Jira.
Working with a team is always easier when properly planned and the right tools are in place. No matter how good your team is at their work, if you are constantly working in a state of chaos, chances are that things are not going to happen on time. Hence choosing a good collaboration tool is essential; That way, you can get your products on time, and everyone can operate with a healthy mind, knowing exactly what to do and when.
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