At many companies, the productivity benefits of collaboration software have been long apparent: easier communications with colleagues, more effective brainstorming with remote team members, and the ability to share content, files and other resources with anyone, anytime, anywhere.

But as collaboration tools have evolved, some organizations have found benefits they hadn’t counted on, such as increased transparency, better problem-solving and more efficient crisis planning.

Here are seven unexpected ways collaboration software has bolstered enterprise productivity — along with a look at some of the challenges companies may need to address first.

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