Top 8 Team Chat Apps For Your Business In 2021

Business Management
Denis Yankovsky February 10, 2021 14 min read
Team Chat Apps

Quick Guide

    Whether it’s at work, at home, or work-from-home, using live chat for instant communication became the main way people interact day-to-day, and it makes perfect sense. Why? Because chat is immediate, quick to transfer and receive information, mobile-friendly (unlike emails), supports all media types, is easy to operate, and usually requires no training to start using it. 

    Your personal life aside, when it comes to the workplace, not just any solution will do. Recent research shows that just 56% of deskless workers in the United States feel connected and engaged with their employers, and job dissatisfaction could drive many younger deskless workers to seek more fulfilling positions elsewhere. A shocking 84% of deskless workers say they don’t get enough direct communication from top management, and only 10% feel strongly connected to their companies.

    Effective and quick communication in the workplace is critical for business results and customer satisfaction, so it’s important to consider if a particular team chat app fits your workplace outline.

    Before going with one particular team chat app, ask yourself:

    • Is it available for all employee devices?
    • Will it be easy to onboard my team?
    • Is it cost-effective for my business?
    • Does it improve the way employees communicate? 

    Read on to learn the most important qualities of a work team chat app to consider, or go ahead and start saving time and money with the most trending team chat app, trusted by both commercial and non-profit organizations to streamline their internal communication and effectively interact about work.

    The cost of miscommunication in the workplace - Connecteam image

    Best All-In-One Team Chat App For Business

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    How To Choose The Top Team Chat App For Your Business

    We’ve done the heavy lifting for you and have listed our top 8 team chat apps, but as there are a variety of solutions available and multiple considerations to mull over, here are the main things we believe you should focus on when evaluating a team chat app for your business:

    1. Ease of use. To truly understand if the team chat app is easy to use, ask yourself these questions:

    • Is it suitable for all my employees? Will they be able to use it?
    • Will it be easy and not too expensive to onboard new employees?
    • Will my employees be able to adopt this tool as their daily-driver?
    • Depending on which hardware they use, is the solution I choose the most suitable? 

    If you have a majority of non-desk employees vs. employees that are in front of a computer every day, then choose one that best reflects your employee base.

    2. Feature set. Does the team chat app have features I can easily implement and will improve our everyday communication:

    • Make sure the team chat app gets the basics right: team chat, private conversations, media sharing,  location sharing, etc. Any additional features are a bonus to your business as a whole.
    • Are most of its features suitable for my employees and my business?
    • Does it serve a true business purpose or solve an actual problem?

    3. Control and security. It’s a work tool, so:

    • How much control do I have over it?
    • Is it secure enough for my business?
    • Where the data is stored?
    • Do I want to allow employees the option to manipulate conversation content?
    • What kind of information do you want to share?
    • Is it vulnerable to commercial information?

    4. Price. Naturally, the price of a team chat app plays a key role in your selection, so ask yourself:

    • Is it cost-effective?
    • Is it worth the amount I pay?
    • What are the other benefits?
    • Is it scalable looking forward?
    • If I stick with it, will it cause me to spend more money later on modifications, like API and integrations?

    We’ve reviewed several different communication tools based on that checklist, and created a shortlist of the top 8 team chat apps you should use for work in 2021

    Top 8 Best Team Chat Apps For Your Business

    1. Connecteam

    The best all-in-one team chat app for business: free to start, quick to implement, simple to use even for deskless employees.

    cleaning company communication

    If you have a majority of deskless or less tech-savvy employees, then Connecteam is the perfect work team chat app for you. After all, it was designed and built especially for deskless employees. Not only is it super easy to use but it will enhance your day-to-day business routine. 

    Companies don’t just need a tool to chat with their employees, they need to boost engagement, share updates, connect colleagues, enhance productivity, better collaboration, and so much more.

    What’s great about Connecteam — is that in addition to the live chat group conversations, it also includes a directory for all work contacts, immediate updates with or without comments and likes, employee feedback surveys, a suggestion box, and much, MUCH more. All data is documented on Connecteam’s secure cloud which you can access at any time with no storage limit.

    This all-in-one team chat app can help you to promote transparency, give feedback to engage employees, and bring all workplace conversations, collaboration, tasks, and tools in one place.

    Key features:

    • Use a project-specific communication channel to keep discussions focused and targeted and share important updates and attachments during the day: start 1-on-one or group chats, split chats by professional teams or seniority level, use media-rich attachments, such as images, videos, PDFs, GIFs for interactive content, allow people to like and comment to be part of the discussion, or use a structured safe organizational environment with one-way announcements or content administration.
    • Instantly receive & deliver important updates: collect incident reports from event staff in real-time with photographs, signatures, notes, or shift opening/closing forms. You can also showcase customers’ feedback, plan after-work events, and celebrate your team’s success stories with updates sent through the team chat app. Admins can see who saw and who opened their message and send a reminder for those who didn’t react in time.
    • Utilize a secure employee directory: A simple to use, and fully searchable work contacts directory for all the needed information about colleagues or pierces. This allows employees to search for any work contact via pre-determined profile attributes so they can easily make a phone call, send an email, or start a private chat conversation, without the need to save contacts on their personal mobile device.
    • Collect feedback with surveys, suggestion boxes, and live polls: make decisions based on in-organizational surveys, launch a suggestion box to gain feedback and insights, and introduce an open-door policy so employees can directly approach HR or senior management.
    • Guarantee employee recognition and acknowledgment: celebrate new hires, personal milestones like anniversaries, create an employee spotlight, and allow employees to nominate their peers for awards.

    Price: Connecteam’s team chat app is easily the most affordable solution: no paying for each user, just a flat monthly fee starting at just $39/month for up to 50 users. Or you can start with the free plan after your free 14-day trial is up. Enterprise pricing for more than 200 people will be quoted upon request.

    The New Level Of Team Chats

    Connecteam offers effective communication tools for businesses and teams in one place, like group-chat, employee directory, immediate updates and social posts. All can be customized and starts at just $39/month for up to 50 users!

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    2. Troop Messenger

    Diverse corporate team chat app solution, with screen-sharing and video-calls.

    Troop Messenger

    Troop Messenger is a team chat platform intended for uninterrupted work conversations. This team chat app is available across diverse platforms such as Web, Windows, Mac OS, Android, and iOS. The powerful feature-stack with seamless navigational user interfaces makes the application better to the best. The functional features which are shown on the user interface are quite self-explanatory. It’s being lauded by many of the industry experts for its intuitive and impressive UI/UX design.

    If you’re an intra-corporate or government team, Troop Messenger is designed for you. With incredibly secure features and large storage size, you can easily hold one-on-one or group conversations while screen-sharing, add video-calls and enjoy a desktop app. 

    Key features:

    • Alerts/notifications
    • Discussion threads
    • Real-time chat
    • Search
    • File sharing
    • Version control
    •  Video conferencing
    • Contact management
    •  Content management
    •  Discussion boards
    •  Document management

     Price: Troop Messenger chat app’s pricing starts from $2,5 per user/month for a Premium plan and  $5 per user/month for an Enterprise plan. (up to 500 users)

    3. Slack

    The best solution for tech-savvy teams and integrations with other software.

    Slack team chat app

    Teams that work in hi-tech and need a team chat for collaboration on projects can greatly benefit from Slack’s unique interface. It is an enterprise messaging chat solution and team collaboration app. Slack features incredible integration capabilities and bots to set automatic actions and notifications. It also allows one-on-one and group chat, individual and team audio calls, and video conferencing. All you need is an email to invite an employee to join Slack.

    Key features:

    •  Activity/newsfeed
    •  Alerts/notifications
    •  Audio calls
    •  Discussion threads
    •  File sharing
    •  Mobile access
    •  Real-time chat
    •  Search
    •  Task management
    •  Third-party Integration
    •  Video conferencing

     Price: Slack has a free version and offers a free trial. Slack paid version starts at $6.67/month. Each range has additional add-ons that can benefit your business needs, although you may need to pay extra.

    4. Microsoft Teams

    The best solution for team video conferencing, especially for Microsoft 365 customers.

    Microsoft Teams

    Microsoft Teams team chat and collaboration app is very easy to integrate with other Microsoft products or Skype. If audio and video calls are what you’re looking for, Microsoft Teams is a great solution for you. Plus, if you already paid for Microsoft Office 365 Essentials or a Business account, integrating this chat app is simple. Keep in mind that Teams does require all users to have a Microsoft account.

    Key features:

    •  Board meetings
    •  Committee meetings
    •  Internal meetings
    •  Discussion threads
    •  Real-time chat
    •  Search
    •  Video conferencing
    •  Surveys & feedback
    •  Task management

     Price: Microsoft Teams pricing starts from $5 per user/month or $12.50 per user/month for up to 300 users, both an annual commitment. They also have a free version, to begin with, so long as you have an active Microsoft account.

    5. Beekeeper:

    The best team chat app solution for large enterprises with virtual conference rooms and a built-in phone system.

    Beekeeper team chat app

    Beekeeper refers to itself as a “workforce idea-sharing and voting app” that is supposed to make communication with your team easier. The integration process is suitable with HR software but it takes time. Users can receive company notifications and can send instant messages to other employees. Their encrypted data security means company data remains secure. If you want a price quote, you’ll need to contact Beekeeper directly.

    Key features:

    •  Activity/newsfeed
    •  Alerts/notifications
    •  Audio calls
    •  Discussion threads
    •  File sharing
    •  Mobile access
    •  Real-time chat
    •  Search
    •  Surveys & feedback
    •  Task management
    •  Third-party integration

    Price: Contact Beekeeper representatives for custom pricing quotes. This platform does offer a free trial but does not offer a free plan.

    6. Rocket.Chat

    A high-tech team communication app for business, with a fully customizable interface, a range of plugins, themes, and integrations.

    Rocket Chat

    Rocket.Chat is not just a team chat app, but rather a “communication hub”, as they call themselves. This chat app is designed for team communication and collaboration with your team, sharing files, chatting in real-time, or switching to video/audio conferencing. This software also offers complete access to the source code, so you can fully customize, extend, or add new functionality to meet your requirements.

    Key features:

    • Real-time or asynchronous team chat 
    • Audio and video calls
    • Screen sharing
    • Share files
    • SSO

    Price: Rocket.Chat pricing starts at $2.00 per month, per user. There is a free version for those who want to host the software themselves, and custom pricing for enterprise solutions. Rocket.Chat offers a 14-day free trial.

    7. Google Chat (ex Hangouts Chat) 

    Google’s proprietary team messaging and collaboration app, that’s a part of the G Suite.

    Google team chat app

    Google Chat app (ex-Google Hangout), and is what some users refer to “The Google’s version of Slack” for team messaging and workplace collaboration. Google Chat helps teams collaborate easily and efficiently with direct messages and group chats. Thanks to dedicated virtual rooms to house projects over time, plus threaded conversations this tool makes it simple to track progress and follow up tasks. 

    Key features:

    • Part of Google G Suite
    • Uses the same Google account
    • Google Chrome desktop extension
    • Screen sharing
    • Messaging, voice, and video calls
    • Virtual rooms
    • Pricing per user
    • No free option to try

    Price: Google Chat is included in the Google G Suite paid subscription, or can be purchased separately with Basic, Business, or Enterprise plans costing $6, $12, or $25 respectively per user, per month.

    8. WhatsApp

    One of the world’s most popular chat apps, owned by Facebook, and used for team communication by many employers.

    WhatsApp team chat app

    In the last decade, many teams and businesses around the globe used WhatsApp as their most popular internal communication tool for work, as well as personal chat with friends and family. It’s easy to see why — most people already have the app downloaded on their phone, it’s a free solution, and overall, it’s just convenient. Apart from the regular popular chat services that most people are familiar with, this provider offers a separate app called WhatsApp Business, aiming to make it easier for businesses & their customers to interact with each other.

    Although we couldn’t ignore this team chat app, considering its popularity, we think it’s far from ideal for work-related communication. In fact, a lot of managers and employees were raising concerns about using the app for organizational purposes, such as overflow of irrelevant and distracting information and even shaming and fights between employees.

    And now that WhatsApp has announced new privacy changes that are taking effect in February 2021, its 2 billion users – especially those who rely on WhatsApp for business communications – are looking to make the switch to a more proper for business use, safer solution, and we can’t blame them.

    Key features:

    • Personal & Business Profiles
    • Voice messaging & calls
    • Messaging tools with auto-replies (WhatsApp Business only)
    • Messaging statistics (WhatsApp Business only)
    • WhatsApp Web desktop version
    • WhatsApp Business APIs for medium and large businesses ((WhatsApp Business only))

    Price: WhatsApp and WhatsApp Business are free to download and use.

    Bottom Line On Top Team Chat Apps For Business

    Team chat apps are a natural go-to solution for communicating with employees,  both for small businesses and big organizations.

    It allows for quick interactions and data sharing during the day, and it helps to keep employees engaged and loyal — hence productive. And when you’re dealing with remote employees, there’s no other way to effectively manage them without an effective team chat app. The question is just which one should you choose?

    The best communication apps are affordable or even allow to start for free, easy to use, offer functions to address key organizational needs, and can be quickly implemented, so it’s no wonder more businesses are making the smart choice to communicate and engage with their employees via this dedicated and efficient channel.

    Best Team Chat App For Business, & So Much More

    Connecteam’s team chat app makes internal communication a blast: Easily create a team chat per location, project, department or start a private conversation by browsing work contacts via the in-app directory. With advanced management tools built especially for in-organizational use, Connecteam’s chat takes employee communication to the next level.

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