9. February 2023

3 use cases of async collaboration for your teams

It may be a little late (thanks COVID!) but we are wishing you a very happy new year, and hope you had a great start into the year. In this first post of the year we want to talk about the use cases for which async collaboration is perfectly suited for your teams, and how Imaranda is the right tool for doing this; especially when your team works in a remote / hybrid work setting.

To be completely honest, we believe that async collaboration can work for any use case that involves information gathering, brainstorming, and design thinking; basically, any form of discussion can be done asynchronously. Working effectively in an async setting has more to do with your team’s culture, processes and tools than the use case of the discussion. We wrote a blog about this topic in November 2022, here is the link.

But if we were to choose, then these would be our top three use cases for async collaboration:

Product discovery

We are product people ourselves, and we know how hard it is for a product person to source information and all relevant context from different stakeholders. This becomes even more challenging when your stakeholders are spread across different time zones. A product person trying to do discovery always in sync with their stakeholders almost always runs into challenges. They have to correlate the information they have gathered from their business side stakeholders with information they have gathered from their engineering side stakeholders; this leads to countless meetings and long hours spent in documentation.

With Imaranda, product folks can get everyone on the same page by starting a discussion on a board and letting everyone provide their inputs without having to worry about providing and maintaining structure; the board will do this automatically for them. People can add their inputs in their own time, once the discussion is concluded the product person could mark the results of the discussion and create the next steps for the relevant people. All this could be done asynchronously, without having to spend those long meeting hours.

Status updates

If we had a dollar for every minute we had spent in a meeting where we just had to listen to the updates for a project / task, we all would have been millionaires by now. Status update meetings are generally meetings where 10 to 15 people gather (could be more / less, depending on the context) to listen to 1 to 2 people talk, and maybe 1 to 2 people asking questions (if any!). This is an insane wastage of people’s collective time we believe.

With Imaranda boards, people could very easily create status update boards for a project / task and invite all relevant stakeholders to the board. The board will guide the users about what has changed on the board since they last viewed it. It will also ask users whetherevery input (every update in this case) is clear for them or not, they could indicate the same to the creator of the board through annotations.They could also leave relevant comments and ask further updates, and all this could be done without spending unnecessary hours of meeting time.

Agile rituals - Standups and Retrospectives

Every technology team that works in the Agile framework has certain rituals, which are essentially recurring meetings where the team gathers and shares feedback and updates. Getting everyone in the same meeting on a recurring basis can become challenging when team members are located in different places and in different time zones. Standups in particular can become challenging because they generally occur on a daily basis.

Imaranda boards can help Agile teams shift their rituals to an async setting. Teams can create their stand up / retrospective boards where team members can add their inputs in their own time. Thereafter, even if the team meets to look at the inputs every one provided, they’ll have all inputs in a structure which otherwise someone would have had to create. We have seen teams practice async agile rituals, and they in general save a lot of time by doing so.

The bottom line is that asynchronous discussions make teams more effective and team members happier. In our previous blog post we wrote about the science behind asynchronous collaboration and how it's a better way of working together, you can find it here. Interested in knowing more about Imaranda and seeing how it can help your team? Book a short meeting with our founders here, they’ll be happy to show you the product and advise you on how you can adopt async in your team.