Dropbox Business Blog UK — How technology is continuing to change the way we work

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14th Aug, 2017 — 4 min read

How technology is continuing to change the way we work

Ten years ago, mobile technology was making waves in the workplace, promising a borderless, paperless office and the end of the 9-5.  That’s pretty much the reality – or at least a potential one – for each and every business.

If you’re a business that’s embraced the opportunities technology has offered, the chances are that in order to employ the best talent, you’ve got multiple employees in multiple locations.  And whilst previously it would have been difficult to operate with such a disparate workforce, collaboration tools have helped keep track of workflow.

What I mean by collaboration tool, is technology which allows multiple people to access a single document simultaneously, at any time of day or night and effortlessly collate thoughts, comments, links, pictures, videos and more – this is what allows businesses to operate effectively on projects no matter where staff are located.

And for me, sitting here in the office in Tel Aviv, working on projects with a team in San Fransisco, Seattle and New York, collaboration with my team – in some cases people I have never met face to face – is very important. So how do we do it?

We use Dropbox Paper to share content in all formats, ideas, and brainstorm with our global team. At the moment, I’m even using Paper to complete agile retrospectives as part of the development process in my own disparate team.

Agile retrospectives are ideally carried out face to face with the team, soon after a project is complete.  The point is to get everyone in a room to discuss what went well and what could be improved – but in our team, we are dealing with remote offices and time zone differences, so we created an ‘online meeting document’. And it soon became clear that collaboration tools like Dropbox Paper inspire a whole new approach to work too – one where you can share videos for inspiration, add comments to bounce ideas off each other, and @people in that same document to keep actions on track.

After all, creativity, ideas and inspiration don’t start and stop in the “office”. We’re becoming accustomed to the concept of easy access work or mobile working, and it means we aren’t stifled by timelines or expectations.

Whether it’s updating a document at the airport, adding your comment to a project whilst queuing at the petrol station, or simply getting a great idea out there in the middle of the night, “working” is now a much more fluid discipline.

Film director Haz Dulull is proof of what can be achieved by using Dropbox Paper to bring a dispersed team together: “I’m not a massive fan of huge email trails and notes. At the same time, I’ve tried other file sharing programmes but files expire and links get lost. After years of trialling alternatives, I moved everything to Dropbox in a bid to save time, cut costs and improve efficiency.”

Haz ended up creating a virtual mood board in Dropbox Paper for contributors to share ideas on, and the end result is a soon to be released film, created entirely in the cloud. “Once we had a feel for how the film would be structured, I set up a separate Paper folder for each sequence and invited only the members of the team for whom that sequence was relevant. This actually ended up improving efficiency and saving time. We minimised subjective input on each sequence which meant we could make decisions much more quickly and speed up the production process.”

To find out how Haz created a complete film using Dropbox Paper, click here.

Author: Gal Zellermayer, Engineering Manager at Dropbox

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