This is a guest blog post submitted by Spartez, highlighting MeetingRoom, a virtual meeting space, and its Confluence and JIRA integration.
Communication is the Key to Efficient Teamwork
Software development, as well as most other creative activities, requires effective team collaboration. Gains from high bandwidth communication among team members are huge and organizations that facilitate said gains are much more efficient. At the same time, teams these days are often spread out in different offices, cities, or countries. Therefore, communication becomes a non-trivial matter. High bandwidth communication means that point-to-point conversations are not enough. What you want is a everybody-to-everybody type of setup, where all team members are able to participate in discussions and have an eye on what is going on in the team in real time.
Enter Spartez MeetingRoom
If you are on a team that has members physically separated, either by the fact that the team spans multiple locations, but maybe they are just in different rooms in a big building, you may be struggling to achieve efficient, high-bandwidth communication. What you really want is a “virtual meeting space“, in which your team hangs out. Therefore, our MeetingRoom group chat server may just be the tool for you. It is the solution that lets teams communicate effectively. Being both web- and Jabber-based, it is non-obtrusive, but always-on. Moreover, it integrates with JIRA and Confluence in many cool ways. And integration with Bamboo is coming in the near future.
You can choose to have your IM application open on your team’s chat room and have an eye on the on-going discussions, or you can choose to review what has been discussed at your leisure. You can connect to the chat room with your smartphone (using a Jabber client application), or you can use a web browser (e.g. on a public terminal) .
A MeetingRoom chat room can very easily be embedded in any Confluence page using a free, open source macro. In addition to embedding MeetingRoom’s full web user interface in Confluence, this macro also provides a secure link between your Confluence account and your MeetingRoom account, so that you only have to log in once.
Commands – More Atlassian Integration
MeetingRoom accepts many “commands” (typed directly into a chat window or into an IM client) that make it perform all sorts of tasks: from very simple ones, like /time, which gives you the current time in several time zones, to complicated ones, like /vote, that allows chatroom users to vote on topics they are interested in, or /standup for performing distributed agile daily standup meetings.
A few of these commands provide powerful integration with JIRA and Confluence.
- You can create Confluence pages or blog posts right from your chat room, using
/confluence blog command
- You can export your agile daily standup reports to Confluence using
/standup confluence command
- MeetingRoom also provides quite powerful integration with JIRA, using /jiracommand, which lets you perform a lot of operations on JIRA servers right from your chat room IM window:
- creating issues
- viewing and editing issues
- logging work
- commenting on issues
- listing projects
History and Search
MeetingRoom’s searchable chat history provides a way to build your team’s base of knowledge, which everybody on the team can always refer to.
You are also share files between team members – this includes uploading screenshots, using an external application.
Uploaded files can be viewed directly in the chat and history windows – which helps to associate a file with the context in which it was uploaded, or you can search for a particular file using multiple criteria.
Behind the Firewall
Unlike some other group chat products, you can deploy MeetingRoom behind your firewall, being sure that your sometimes confidential conversations are not stored on somebody else’s servers.
MeetingRoom can be evaluated for free for 30 days, or you can register on our MeetingRoom demo server–which also hosts our own chat rooms–and join a “Guests” chat room. MeetingRoom’s Confluence and JIRA integration are explained and available here.