Introduction:

'External collaboration' often conjures images of sharing documents outside of an organization's digital walls. However, in the sprawling landscape of modern business, this term stretches far beyond its traditional confines. External collaboration encompasses every thread of communication and shared effort that connects your organization with the outside world. From engaging with potential new hires to liaising with international business units, this complex web is integral to operational success. But with complexity comes the need for robust management, and that's where many organizations find themselves on shaky ground.

Unpacking External Collaboration:

To truly grasp the scope of external collaboration, we must acknowledge its diverse manifestations. It's not just sharing or co-editing documents; it's about enabling secure, productive interactions with any stakeholder not officially within your corporate digital boundary.

Consider these scenarios:

• Hiring: Collaborating with potential employees through assessments and interviews.

• Partnerships: Working on joint ventures that necessitate a constant exchange of intellectual property.

• Supply Chain Management: Interacting with numerous suppliers, vendors, and logistics partners to keep your operations running smoothly.

• Governance: Dealing with external board members and advisors who influence decision-making.

• Consultants and Contractors: Engaging experts for temporary projects or specialized work.

• Subsidiaries and Affiliates: Maintaining coherence and synergy across different entities under the corporate umbrella.

• Regulatory Compliance: Submitting documentation to and receiving guidelines from regulatory bodies and law enforcement.

Each of these interactions, though varied, shares a common requirement: the need for secure, controlled, and efficient collaboration tools.

The Impact on Team Members:

For Digital Workplace Executives: You're tasked with creating a digital environment that's conducive to both internal efficiency and external collaboration. It's about more than just providing tools; it's about ensuring that each tool enhances, rather than complicates, the user experience.

For Information Security Teams: With data being shared externally, the surface area for potential security breaches expands exponentially. How do you maintain the integrity of your data across different platforms and collaboration scenarios?

For Governance, Risk, and Compliance (GRC) Professionals: Each external collaboration must be audited for compliance, risk assessed, and governed according to both internal policies and external regulations. Can you ensure consistency across all these fronts?

For Identity and Access Management Leaders: When external collaborators are many, managing access becomes a Herculean task. How do you ensure that every access point is secured and every identity is verified?

For IT Administration: Your aim is technological harmony, but a multitude of collaboration tools can create a discordant system. How do you consolidate these tools without disrupting the user experience or existing workflows?

For Business Unit Leaders: Your success hinges on strategic external collaborations that drive business growth. How do you measure and enhance the productivity of these interactions?

For Executive Sponsors: You champion the strategic direction, but how do you align the organization's vast external collaborative efforts with this strategic vision?

For Procurement Specialists: Your focus is on cost-effective procurement, but how do you assess the true cost of collaboration tools? How do you rationalize spending on multiple platforms with overlapping functionalities?

The Hidden Costs and Complexities: Overhead isn't just financial; it's also the cognitive load on employees, the security risk from dispersed data, and the time lost managing disparate systems. What's the impact of multiple data copies being created and shared? How do you control the deluge of unprotected emails? What's the real cost of storage and maintenance for data that's growing exponentially?

The eShare Solution:

Enter eShare, a unified platform designed to simplify and secure the maze of external collaboration. eShare offers a centralized, intuitive interface that brings together all aspects of external collaboration, backed by robust security and compliance features. With eShare, you can manage identities, track data sharing, and ensure seamless integration with your existing systems.

Conclusion:

External collaboration is an expansive concept that demands a solution capable of simplifying its complexity. eShare offers this solution, ensuring that your organization can collaborate externally without friction or fear. It's time to embrace a tool that understands the vastness of 'external' collaboration and is adept at handling its multifaceted challenges.

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Are you ready to redefine external collaboration for your organization? Reach out to us to see how eShare can transform your collaborative landscape, mitigate hidden costs, and align your external interactions with strategic business goals.

Mike Parrella

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