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HAVING employees constantly on the go and in multiple locations would pose a conundrum to firms when information has to be disseminated in a secure and efficient manner.
However, with Dropbox, that is one worry that can be struck off the list for companies such as TradeGecko, JustCo and Tinkerbox.
A file-sharing company, Dropbox has gained a following from people who store items such as photos and files in the cloud. Also,using it as a corporate file server has allowed firms to communicate with their employees in a more effective and flexible way.
FOUNDED by three entrepreneurs from New Zealand, Singapore-based software provider TradeGecko expanded within months of its establishment in 2012.
Tripling in size in a matter of months, the floor was a flurry of team members handing flash drives back and forth and sharing files locally. Details were missed as edit versions went into the double-digits.
The need for a more robust solution that would allow real-time sharing and multiple-person access came to the fore, and upon discovering that many employees were already personal Dropbox users, the company opted to use Dropbox Business.
For senior designer Alex Smee, the ability to share projects and contribute to more than one project at a time was a "godsend".
"From a design team's point-of-view, Dropbox Business removes all headaches. It allows us to simplify things and to remove any sort of team collaboration struggles in our day-to-day work."
Dropbox Business helps clear the confusion around the file version everyone is using and everyone in the company can preview the files to stay updated on the progress.
Co-founder and CEO of TradeGecko Cameron Priest said: "I don't have Adobe Illustrator installed on my computer, but I am still able to sit down with Dropbox Business and look through all the latest files that have been created with it."
Dropbox Business not only allows TradeGecko employees to share and store large files, it also gives them the option to keep such files off their local drive.
Mr Smee said: "Our marketing materials sometimes involve videos that take up lots of gigabytes, and that's when the Dropbox Business selective sync feature becomes very important."
The firm also relies on the software to ensure that all documents - from HR files to financial documents are securely saved and only shareable with appropriate individuals.
Since adopting Dropbox Business, day-to-day operations are smooth and seamless even as it continues to expand its global workforce. Also, Dropbox Business runs in the background, allowing TradeGecko staff members to focus on priorities that propel the company forward, rather than spending time managing separate applications and workflows.
Mr Smee said: "Dropbox is like the headquarters for everything we work on. We use it pretty much every moment of the day."
JUSTCO, a co-working space established in 2015, has lofty ambitions to be the biggest network of co-working space in Singapore, if not Asia. They have since outgrown their single-office setup. However, with more space, staff and locations, data could not be managed by the Network Attached Storage system anymore, which was a hindrance to staff in different locations wanting to view the same file.
Founder and CEO of JustCo Kong Wan Sing said that it was not a very user-friendly system.
"From a user management perspective, we had a growing team and we needed more secure admin controls."
He added that managing HR processes was also time-consuming, from onboarding new staff to protecting IP when employees moved on.
Hence, adopting Dropbox Business was a no-brainer since most of the people at the company were already using it to share and store files. However, as the company expanded, security and storage became more crucial.
"We made the switch to Dropbox Business and immediately had more control with the IT dashboard. Two-factor authentication was also really useful and IT finds onboarding a lot easier."
Mr Kong said that it was also easier to take back sensitive company information when staff left and he appreciated the convenience of being able to access sensitive files remotely from his laptop, which, to him, was testament to the strength of the security of the product.
The file-sharing company has also smoothened the process for co-design and multiple locations, allowing for unprecedented efficiency.
"We have 70 people spread across eleven locations in Singapore and Asia and we are able to operate like we are all in the same location. The marketing team commonly uses Dropbox to store large files, which can be continually updated and amended."
JustCo's office extends beyond the confines of the four walls, and with Dropbox, the expansion is all the more boundless.
A SINGAPORE-BASED software design and Web development studio that creates innovative end-to-end solutions, Tinkerbox has streamlined the creation of innovative technological solutions for clients using Dropbox Business.
Bringing an idea to fruition is no easy task - the process requires a range of specialists, and for different team members to take part in the project in different stages. This created an issue of managing the different workflows and files.
Jaryl Sim, CTO and co-founder of Tinkerbox, said: "Before Dropbox Business, we had ongoing project management issues. Every team member had a personal Dropbox account so we didn't have visibility or control over our company files and the storage restrictions quickly became problematic."
Mr Sim and the team decided to implement Dropbox Business as a way to keep different work streams in sync. It gave the 25-strong team the opportunity to have one central resource for all files where team members can access the latest information easily.
"We knew as soon as it came out that Dropbox Business was the solution that we needed. We can now work on end-to-end projects seamlessly and with a greater amount of visibility over workflows. I don't have to constantly worry about where a particular file is stored."
Collaboration tools such as Dropbox Paper also help keep the Tinkerbox team on track.
Mr Sim added that Dropbox Paper is used for recording agenda items and minutes during meetings.
"It also allows us to easily assign tasks to relevant team members on the spot."
Dealing with confidential and bespoke app and software builds, Tinkerbox needs to be watertight.
"With Dropbox Business we can easily designate granular levels of access to team members. We store employment contracts, admin files, and other sensitive company information in Dropbox Business and we know that only the right people have access to these files."
Indeed, with Dropbox Business, it has not only provided firms with general project management access, but also the necessary range of access levels to the teams.