Small businesses around the world continue to adapt to a new normal workplace as remote and hybrid models dominate many sectors. How do teams communicate effectively from remote locations? Workplace collaboration has never been more important to success, and businesses seek innovative software tools to boost their collaboration efforts and maximize their communication.
What is Zoho Cliq?
Zoho Cliq is a workplace collaboration application that offers customers text, audio and video chat capabilities, as well as individual channels to keep conversations separated. Customers can migrate to Cliq from competitor tools like Slack while they integrate their communications operations with other business functions linked to the Zoho One suite of products.
Changing Communications Market
Zoho Cliq offers unique business solutions in two markets: The instant messaging software market is expected to reach $75 billion by 2025, and the internal communications software market could be worth $1.78 billion by 2027. Both markets were separately robust and growing in 2019, but the global pandemic changed the game as demand for remote communications services skyrocketed around the world.
“Large things changed the lines between the instant messaging software market and the internal communications software market,” Senior Marketing Analyst for Zoho Cliq Prason Selvanayagam said. “That line kind of blurred when a lot of instant messaging software started getting into the B2B sector, and a lot of internal communication software market players started incorporating a lot of B2C capabilities into that product line.”
Even now that many world marketplaces have reopened, and the world anticipates the post-pandemic society to come, many workplaces have retained a hybrid business model, as employees work together from in-office and remote locations. As a result, both the ICS and the IMS markets continue to grow and adapt to new demands. In fact, the ICS market is growing at three times its pre-pandemic rate, which already reflects a healthy rise. Gartner predicted that by 2022 three-quarters of small businesses would conduct work completely remotely.
“Just one month into the lockdown, the global remote workforce doubled in the U.S. alone from the 30% audience of workers who were working remotely just doubled,” Selvanayagam recalled. “At the same time, because of this sudden change, 60% of the companies around the globe did not have a long term strategy for internal communications software. And just because of working remotely, the employee productivity increased by 25% when they’re closely connected by an internal communication software.”
Zoho Cliq Product Journey
Cliq joined the Zoho family of products in 2017 as a business collaboration tool, joining a market that included competitors like Slack and the then-recently launched Microsoft Teams. When Cliq launched as a new product, it featured typical chat messaging software.
The goal, however, was a product that teams not only used to communicate and collaborate, but also relied upon to develop and create small widgets and programs that can be used to speed work and boost productivity. Since Cliq’s inception, the focus has shifted to productivity and building internal communication tools designed specifically with remote and hybrid workplaces in mind.
Zoho Cliq Features
Cliq can be used to communicate through a variety of ways, from audio and video calls to instant messaging to sharing screens or media files. A few of the most popular Zoho Cliq features include:
Zoho knows that effective collaboration is the cornerstone to every team’s success, and Cliq is designed to boost collaboration efforts on multiple fronts. Users can create teams and channels within their organizations, and Cliq also can be used for group calls and meetings for as many as thousands of people. With Cliq, teams can create custom widgets, send reminders and automate their messages.
Remote Work Tools
Remote work features were introduced to Cliq in 2020 with the goal of bridging the gap between remote and physical workplaces, creating the ultimate hybrid workspace. With a quick glance, team members can see who is available, who is not available and who is already in another meeting. They also can see what meetings are scheduled by which team members, as well as stats of everyone’s productivity.
Hybrid Work Tools
Hybrid workplace tools are some of the newest features of Zoho Cliq. The tool features asynchronous capabilities so colleagues working across different time zones can collaborate seamlessly by not only recording calls and meetings that can be sent to team members, but also sending video clips and screen recordings. Zoho Cliq also features synchronous capabilities to help hybrid teams collaborate better with whiteboards and meeting functionalities.
Part of the Zoho One suite of business software products, Zoho Cliq is available as a desktop app, a web browser app or a mobile app for iOS and Android. The product also can be used with Google Gear, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. The tool continues to grow in popularity, evidenced by the data its use generates. Since introducing the remote and hybrid work features, Zoho Cliq has experienced 300% growth in the use of daily messages and 400% growth in use of meetings.
Zoho Cliq Customers
Four out of every five Zoho Cliq customers come from the small business space. The tool is of particular attraction in the finance and healthcare sectors, which must take security and privacy even more seriously than the average company.
Customers are loyal to Zoho Cliq for a few primary reasons. Zoho Cliq stands apart from the competition thanks to its admin controls, a capability not found in even its largest competitors. Customers can set and give privileges for the users of their own organization rather than contacting the host company to make changes.
Customers also prefer Zoho Cliq because of its cost competitiveness, as the software offers a greater value for its price than competitor products. Plus, because Zoho Cliq is integrated into the Zoho One suite of productivity software solutions, small businesses can combine more functions for seamless operations.
“What drew us to Cliq instantly was its tight integration across major products in the Zoho suite,” Kingsgate Logistics IT and business analyst Jason Greenwalt told Zoho. “This integration made sure that we did not have to switch multiple tabs to keep up with ongoing discussions.”
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