Best practice report: Collaborative Tools and Methodologies

February 3, 2014 by BPIR.com Limited

Collaborative Tools

The following list briefly outlines a selection of collaborative tools that are fully described on the BPIR.com website. (Members can access case studies, data surveys, and expert opinion articles associated with each of these, as well as many other collaborative tools.)

The Seven Step Problem-Solving Method

Seven wide-ranging questions are used to define, analyse and propose solutions to organisational problems. Group discussions on a given organisational problem can be facilitated using these searching questions. The questions may be progressively asked at different levels of the organisation, and the various insights garnered at each level can be collated to give a richer understanding of the problem – leading to potential solutions.

Affinity Diagram (Structured Brainstorming, Kj Method)

Affinity diagrams are used for structuring a group of ideas or suggestions provided by brainstorming. Affinity diagramming is a creative process used by a group or team to gather and optimise ideas, opinions and issues.

Cause and Effect (C&E, Fishbone, Ishikawa) Diagram
The cause and effect diagram is a graphic problem-solving tool showing relationships between a problem and its possible causes.

Learning Map – (Concept Map, Graphic Organiser)

Learning  maps—or  concept  maps—are  diagrams that can be used to explore, gather or share information. Concept maps harness the human ability to understand complex information visually.

Purpose Hierarchy

Brainstorming techniques are employed to organise a purpose hierarchy with the narrowest purpose at the top and the broadest at the base.

Strategic Planning – SWOT Analysis

SWOT analysis is a strategic planning method used to evaluate the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats involved in a project or business venture.

TILMAG (Advanced Analogies)

TILMAG is a creative thinking methodology used to gather ideas by comparing examples of how people have solved similar problems.

Knowledge Management – Wiki

A wiki is a website that uses wiki software, allowing the easy creation and editing of any number of interlinked Web pages.

Cultural Audit – (Culture Audit, Corporate Culture Audit)

A cultural audit is an assessment of an existing organisational culture, and includes its strengths and weaknesses in relation to business goals and objectives.

Group Decision Support Systems – (Discussion Support Systems)

Group Decision Support Systems facilitate project or group collaboration using computerised communication tools and resources.

Collaborative Software Systems

Collaborative software helps teams work together both locally and remotely by providing tools that facilitate communication, collaboration and problem solving.

Systems Engineering – Evolutionary Model

The evolutionary model of systems engineering involves building prototypes via a process of trial and modification to arrive at a satisfactory outcome in collaboration with the end user.