Four Experience Pillars of Modern Collaboration


Welcome back! Here’s the third in my series of blogs on “unstructured and structured” work. So far, we’ve identified the problem (How to make the creative side of business measurable) and explored the current state of creative collaboration (That black hole where so many ideas go to die). Now let’s look ahead to the future.

At Bluescape, we’ve designed four “experience pillars” to help define the workflow challenges we’ve talked about. Let’s dive into these four experience pillars.

Validate. If you’re going to cross that divide between unstructured and structured work, you must have a solid way to validate your ideas, and narrow them down to the best ones. You need tools to make that happen, which is what Bluescape provides. We give our customers a ready-to-use set of tools and services that we’ve designed to help you bring ideas to life, flesh them out, present them, and then measure whether or not they were successful.

Many of our customers in the media and entertainment space, will upload hundreds of images into a workspace. They then gather the stakeholders into a room and use large format touch screens to present the work, interact with it, draw and take notes, zoom in and out of content, and easily collaborate in real-time. Remote attendees can also see and participate in the Bluescape workspace.

At the initial project start, some of these individuals may have not seen or used Bluescape before walking into that room. Yet, instantly, they get it – they intuitively pick up a pen and interact with the workspace screen, touch, draw, add notes, and mark up content they like or cross out things they don’t. Ideas and decisions either move forward or get dropped.

Good validation means that every person sees the same thing. Everyone has a voice in Bluescape and an opportunity to drive forward a shared vision into greater clarity.

Collaborate. With Bluescape, customers are collaborating in new ways that are also very familiar. We’re starting with the ways people collaborate now, such as writing on whiteboards, pasting sticky notes on walls, and processing labor-intensive content into share sites – and we’re taking it somewhere new but also natural to the way they work.

Understanding how people interact is fundamental to getting collaboration right. Everyone works differently and collaboration tools need to account for those differences. Not only must we be able to work together in real time, we must be able to bring ourselves to the content and to the experience.

But just being in the same document space, while valuable, is not sufficient. We need to focus on the insights gained through people connecting and communicating together. It’s about making sure that everyone feels engaged on the same project and meeting.

So, what do I mean by that? It’s about everyone looking at the same content, raising our hand to voice ideas, and making decisions to move projects forward. Now THAT is transformative – and Bluescape does that. It empowers teams and work becomes more effective.

So now how do we make sure our ideas and decisions are useful and valuable to the business?

Communicate. We need to share decisions with our stakeholders, broader organization or customers to get final buy-off. When a film company executive draws a “big X” through a poster design, everyone in the room knows that he/she passed on that option.

In Bluescape, drawing that “big X” has a bigger impact. No longer is the decision just limited to people in the meeting room or next steps in the work process assigned. The simple act of drawing the “big X” or adding comments in Bluescape, triggers updates and alerts to key stakeholders so they’re notified of the latest changes.

Add in integrations with other third party applications (like Adobe Creative Cloud, Slack and others) and the work and notes get automatically updated in that application from a Bluescape workspace.

Iterate. Bluescape delivers an open platform or digital visual container where all content, applications and meeting tools integrate. People can do their work in Bluescape and build their entire project process and content development in the workspace.

Bluescape understands the importance of having an archive of past work and being able to SEE all of it, to bring it forward and evolve it. The persistence of the space is a fundamental value that no other tool can capture today. It’s not enough to keep an archive. The content must be accessible, visible and actionable. Something even modern collaborative documents fail to do.

Bluescape captures creative ideas and design thinking as “unstructured work,” and transforms it into meaningful and innovative ideas that are actionable as “structured work” begins. The black hole of where many potential ideas disappear no longer occurs. All ideas given by every voice, by everyone, redefines the essence of true collaboration.

By Josh Ulm, User Experience Design Advisor and Demian Entrekin, CTO, Bluescape

Follow the Unstructured and Structured Work blog series:
Creative Thinking for Those A-Ha Moments blog 1
Innovation Comes From Everywhere and Everyone blog 2

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