Over 30% of employees are not satisfied with the way their organizations collaborate. Studies have shown that using email as a primary method for collaboration is not productive due to overload and interruptions that usually occur which can affect the workflow.
Reasons to replace email with collaboration software for your business
If you want to get the most out of collaboration, you need to consider the reasons for which you might want to replace the regular way of communication with collaboration software. Using such a tool saves time, strengthens relationships between employees improves management and increases productivity and overall performance.
What are Google Hangouts and Slack?
Before comparing these two apps, you need to know what these apps are intended for by acknowledging their fundamental differences.
Slack is designed to be a combination between a social media website and a chat-room. You can access it in a browser or in a mobile app. It is intended to be a social communications platform for internal groups within a company.
Hangouts, on the other hand, it is not a standalone app because it integrated with the rest of the Google Apps for Business suite used by businesses for communication, writing docs etc.
Finding the right collaboration software – Slack vs Google Hangouts
When it comes to collaboration tools, more than 50% of employees claim that selecting a tool that suits their business is a challenge because these apps are either quite difficult to use or don’t include necessary features. When looking for the right collaboration software, you need to pay attention to the following features: audio and video calls, chat and messaging capabilities, price and file sharing & storage capacity. Both Slack and Google Hangouts deliver these key features, albeit in slightly different ways.
Features: audio & video calling
Slack’s free version allows you to voice/video call only one person (group calls are not available). It includes a “Do Not Disturb” feature which allows you to mute notifications during calls.
If you opt for a paid plan, you can have access to group calls because these plans allow up to 15 people to join the chat simultaneously for companies using Windows, Mac and Linux. You can also share screens with your colleagues.
Slack is also compatible with third-party video apps, like Google Hangouts, Skype, Zoom which must get installed first so that they a Slack user can call them.
In Google Hangouts, voice calls between users of the Hangout platform are free of charge. Google Hangouts offers the ability to have audio and video chats using your PC, smartphone or mobile app (additional charges might apply depending on the region).
This app allows up to 10 members to join a video chat for free. You can still participate in a video call even if you don’t have a Google account set up by clicking on the shared link.
Features: chat and text messaging
Slack allows you to send real-time messages to one person or a group of up to 9 users. Slack provides support for both Google and Apple emojis to react to messages and allows you to tag a specific colleague using the @ function.
Slack allows for a wide range of integrations, and this enables you to send direct SMS messages from this platform to non-Slack users by integrating it with tools such as Zapier SMS tool.
You can integrate Google Hangouts with your SMS inbox to have access to everything in one place. You can also integrate it with your G suite apps. Unlike Slack, Google Hangouts offers direct video chat for individuals and a group of up to 150 members but it still does not provide chat rooms or forums. Hangouts also allows sending and receiving SMS using Google Voice account available only in US.
Features: price and file sharing and storage
Slack offers three SMB pricing packages (Free, Standard and Plus) and one enterprise grid. The Free pricing plan includes: only one-on-one voice and video calls, searchable message archives, 10 third-party service integrations and 5GB of storage/team. For the other two plans there are unlimited features, 10 GB of file storage/member for the Standard plan and and 20GB/team member for the Plus package which cost $6.67/user/month and $12.50/user/month respectively.
Slack has a build-in internal and external sharing option which allows you to drag and drop PDFs, JPEG, videos, etc. from desktop or cloud. Shared files have starring options for marking important files and comment sections for leaving feedbacks.
Google Hangouts offers two SMB and enterprise pricing plan levels: Basic package for $5/user / month, Business package for $10/user/month and the Enterprise plan for $25/user/month. The software provides a 30-days trial with a money back guarantee.
In terms of file sharing and cloud storage, users can share image files directly but sharing Word, Excel, and other file types requires using Google Drive. Drive provides a free version with 15 GB of online storage which gives you advanced admin control functionality. Google’s app suite provides 30GB of online storage for file syncing and sharing in Google Drive with its Basic pricing plan and unlimited storage space (or 1TB/user if fewer than 5 users) in Google Drive with the Business and Enterprise plans.
Even though both are messaging apps, they serve predominantly different use cases. Google Hangouts is a communication tool that although it can be used for multiple people, it focuses more on 1:1 chat because you need to either send an email or add people into the same chat window. Slack on the other hand is mainly a group collaboration and productivity tool which includes individual chat as well.
Both services allow easy and comprehensive message and emails search options. As for file sharing, Slack lets you drag and drop or add a file into chat while Hangouts allows you to attach only images in chat because for sharing other file types it requires sending a Google Drive link to the file and storage.
Both offer integrations with third-party app but the biggest benefit of Hangout is its ability to connect with Google services you are familiar with.
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