About Distributed Teams
It's a simple fact that most organizations have employees
in different geographic locations that need to work together. Whether
they're at corporate headquarters, branch offices, at home, or on
the road – people across town, time zones, and the world might
need to work together on the same project. Regardless of work location,
a timely exchange of information between people and groups is critical
for any organization.
Information access can be a major obstacle to success for most
distributed teams. Geographic, and even firewall related, separation
often leaves teams without a central location to store important
team information. As a result, people tend to store information
on their own computers, a local office system, or even as attachments
to their email, making it even more difficult to break down these
barriers to information access.
Differences in time zones also have the ability to obstruct
a project's success and progress. When people on the same project
work at different times of the day it can interfere with a team's
ability to determine in a timely manner the availability of individual
team members, state of shared workinprogress documents, status
of projects steps and milestones, and who has what project responsibilities
and are those responsibilities being executed on.
Information duplication also creates problems for distributed
teams. Significant time is wasted if team members work independently
to create their own versions of similar documents, or if teams members
work on different versions of the same document. People need to
have access to the most current information and be able to see what
other members of their team are working on in order to prevent duplication
To increase team efficiency and effectiveness, team workspaces
in Novell Vibe provide a centralized area where teams can create,
store and share information in a variety of ways (i.e., documents,
wikis, blogs, tasks, etc.). Team workspaces make it easy for anyone
to create their own team area and to allow anyone in the organization
to be a part of the team.
As a browserbased product, all information in Novell Vibe
can be accessed from any location with an Internet connection. Information
can be uploaded to and access from Novell Vibe from both inside
and outside the organization's firewall, including from mobile devices.
So, as soon as you store information in Novell Vibe, it becomes
accessible to everyone who needs it. Not only does this realtime
information sharing cut down on duplication, but it greatly facilitates
collaboration efforts. You can allow shared documents in Vibe
to be accessed and edited by other team members. And whenever a document
is edited, Vibe automatically versions the document, providing
you a record of and easy access to all previous versions of the
Novell Vibe also lets you assign tasks with due dates to individual
users, multiple users, entire teams, or all users in your Vibe
environment. The progress of each task can be tracked, and assigned
users can update their own progress each day until task completion.
You can also set up workflow notifications in Novell Vibe
that let users know when they need to take a certain action on a
project. Notifications can be displayed when the workflow moves
into a desired state, after a specified time period has elapsed,
or when the workflow moves out of the state. This allows for users
and managers to keep track of what is going on with the different
stages of a project. Workflows can also let you know if people are falling
behind in the project, notifying you if a workflow has remained
in a certain state for an extended period of time.
Also, to make it easier to stay current with what's going
on with people in other locations and time zones, Novell Vibe
lets you follow specific people, folders, and workspaces. When you
follow a person or place, it posts regular updates on your personal
dashboard about what's happening with those people and places.
Novell Vibe provides a centralized, team based environment
with browserbased access from any Internet connection. With Vibe,
you no longer have to store your information on individual computers.
Instead, you can use central workspaces where all team members have
secure instant access.
Novell Vibe lets individual users create their own teams without
requiring IT assistance. Users can also create projects the moment
they're needed, instead of waiting for IT to set them up. Team leaders
can add and remove team members as needed, greatly simplifying project management.
Task folders and “following” in Novell Vibe can be used to
manage work and follow project progress. Workflow notifications
and reminders can keep everybody on top of project progress, enabling
projects to be completed in a more timely manner. With team documents
stored in a single centralized location, team members can have instant access
to the information they need, streamline document sharing and editing,
and simplify document version control. All of this combined functionality
works together to save you time, travel, and money.
Click here to view the full list of use cases.
Disclaimer: As with everything else at Cool Solutions, this content is definitely not supported by Novell (so don't even think of calling Support if you try something and it blows up).
It was contributed by a community member and is published "as is." It seems to have worked for at least one person, and might work for you. But please be sure to test, test, test before you do anything drastic with it.