Cisco Blogs

Which Collaboration Applications Are Right for Me?

September 3, 2015 - 5 Comments

As a member of the Sales Engineer Organization,  I spend lots of my time staying close to midsized customers observing how teams that do great work are leveraging applications to collaborate.   The number of choices available can make choosing the right tools an interesting journey.

Is there one solution to meet all needs? Midmarket organizations face these questions.   As I talked to several midsized companies this past year, I heard how improving team productivity is top of mind.  Keeping employees connected across their various workplace resources and devices is increasingly important.  Making customers happy with proactive service and quick response times is paramount to an organization’s success.

In the world of collaboration, consider the parallels between how online meetings and physical meetings take place.  Don’t you find it to be more effective to have the right setting for the meetings you attend in person?  A large group in a small space never works right.

For example, with physical meetings:

  • Large groups require large spaces, structured seating, the ability to share media, and the ability for participants to interact with presenters.
  • Fast moving small teams need rooms that are available on-demand and the ability to do real-time content tracking.

One-to-one interactions require privacy and rich-media sharing with the ability to call in additional participants as needed.

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These three meeting types – and the environments where you have them — are very different.  The same goes for how users engage in environments like Cisco WebEx, Spark, and Jabber.

How does this resonate in life beyond work? You may use a telephone call for one type of interaction and a text message for another. You may share information via e-mail or post it to Facebook. It’s about having the right tool for each interaction so you can have the best outcomes.   The number of popular applications in the smartphone market attests to this.  Different apps are chosen depending on generation age and interaction type.

  • Cisco WebEx: Purpose-built for structured online meetings that are scheduled in advance and require clear interaction across a group of people. Such as having a weekly staff or project team meeting.
  • Cisco Spark: Enable fast-moving teams to interact collaboratively in a one virtual workspace space quickly; captures real time and non-real time interactions persistently for internal or external team members to see. Spark is great for working w/a team on projects to track conversations, decisions, and share materials.
  • Cisco Jabber: Enables highly engaging one-to-one interactions with the ability to connect with others fast. Ideal for quick real-time interaction with co-workers when you need to make an immediate decision and get a quick answer.

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The reason Cisco developed WebEx,  Spark, and Jabber is because we want you to have the right tool for the different ways you collaborate.

Learn more about Cisco Collaboration options for midsize organizations.

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  1. Short and simple - thanks!

  2. Wow... this is a really interesting way to look at these three products (WebEx, Spark, and Jabber). I've recently struggled to figure out Cisco's Collaboration strategy for these three products (and what I should be recommending to my company). We’re big WebEx and Jabber users today and I’ve been wondering what Spark brings to the table. Do we replace WebEx (actually CWMS) or Jabber with Spark? We have groups that use Jabber persistent chat rooms for some of the things Spark does, but I’m always leery of forcing an application into a use for which it’s not optimized. Thanks for the alternate frame of reference!

  3. handy quick summary. Thanks for posting.

  4. Great Summary

  5. Great summary - the biggest challenge we have in Cisco, let alone our customers is working out which products to use and how - its a very personal choice I am doing more and more in Spark and Jabber its much easier tomanage and to find things than email but that my preference thanks for sharing