Saleforce’s Quip: Killing the File & Boosting Productivity


The number of employees working at home has increased by 103 percent since 2005. According to Global Workplace Analytics, 3.7 million Americans — or 2.8 percent of the workforce — now work from home at least half the time. Although the employee workforce only increased by 1.9 percent between 2013 and 2014, the telecommuter population grew by 5.6 percent. With the increasing trend towards remote working, team collaboration best practices are more crucial than ever.

So it makes sense that the big players in the collaboration tool market are being acquired. Salesforce just announced that it is acquiring Quip, the cloud-based word processing app for a reported $750 million.

But what makes Quip stand out from the cluttered cloud collaboration tool market? What can cloud software giants Salesforce gain from a Quip acquisition?

What is Quip?

Quip promises to “change the way teams work together”. The tool makes eliminates the need for file sharing and email chains when making revisions or decisions on documents. Instead, a chat function has been built into every document and spreadsheet, so that the latest version is always accessible with annotations are marked up clearly making it easier to discuss and make decisions on.

Other interesting features include an inbox for your documents, which makes it easy to manage your list of living documents. You can also direct message your team members (think Slack!), and mark up comments or edits on any piece of content, even with tags to alert team members! Smart notifications help keep you up-to-date on the status of your files.

Will Quip kill computer files?

As Fast Company cleverly puts it, “In the not-too-distant future, Quip CEO Bret Taylor thinks computer files will seem as antiquated as the floppy disk icon we click on to save them.” This notion is also supported

This notion is also supported by applications like “Google Docs”. The idea of a living document is definitely much more beneficial for the remote team than downloading email attachments and zip files while syncing with shared drives by providing one secure sign-on to access all of your files. To be able to work on a document in real-time with changes saved in real time allows for a much more collaborative way to edit and add to documents.

Can you use Quip offline?

What happens if you want to work on a file but you don’t have an internet connection? Can you still get the benefits of working in the cloud? According to the Quip website, “Quip Desktop is our vision for how cloud software should work. Sign in to Quip and every document in your company is available — offline or online — on all your devices.

The product blurs the line between a desktop app and a cloud service. You get all the benefits of the cloud, like real-time collaboration and syncing across devices, with none of the user experience downsides.” Then as soon as you connect to the internet, your edits will sync up and your changes will be made visible.

Making the transition to Quip

Old computer programs die hard. From floppy disks to hard drives, new processes take a while to get used to but Quip promises to make the transition as easy as possible. They’ve sought out to build the application to make it feel like it’s part of your computer. For example on the the Mac version of the app, all your Quip documents show up in Spotlight Search. So that when you’re searching your computer, all your team’s collaborative documents will show up side-by-side with your personal files and when you sign into Quip Desktop, all your team’s documents are indexed and searchable on your computer.

Ready to get Quip?

Tracking down files and the latest version of a document can be a real productivity killer, not to mention the time and effort it take to compile edits and markups. Using a tool like Quip makes it easy to access all of your documents from anywhere in the world on any device.

Have you tried it? Let us know what you think or check it out here.

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