5 Use Cases for Client Portal Software

In a world where working from home is the norm and meeting clients via your laptop is standard, your company should be aware of secure client portal software that can be used to build a collaborative workspace 24-7. Stay tuned for five examples of how such software may be able to help your business.

What Is a Client Portal?

A client portal is a private website or web application that securely stores your company’s digital files, documents, services, and information. The portal can be accessed by anyone from anywhere with the click of a button (typically along with a username and password). Client portals, sometimes referred to as customer portals, make it easy for you and your employees to connect with clients from all over the world – all from the privacy of your home or office.

Client portals are being used by small businesses, large firms, the healthcare industry, and even entire counties – Baltimore County in Maryland recently launched a data portal to make data available to their main client – the public. There are many advantages to client portals, but below is a list of five ways your business can benefit from a client portal service today.

Product collaboration 

Streamlining communication is particularly important when collaborating on projects or discussing new processes. Cloud-based collaborative workspaces connect employees and clients effortlessly, allowing for instant communication by posting messages and assigning tasks within personalized virtual spaces. 

Who has time to reach out to a client each and every time there is a small question or change? With client portals, communication is much more efficient. Instead of your client having to make space in their schedule for “real-time” conversation or answering constant emails, they can answer all your questions quickly and on their schedule within their client portal.

In addition, collaboration doesn’t have to be stifled within four walls. With client portals, both employees and clients can review documents, add comments, and upload new files from anywhere at any time.

Product delivery 

Delivering products is instantaneous with client portal software.Onehub offers drag and drop options and, similar to a computer, folder-based organization so that clients and employees can find products quickly and confidently.

There’s no need to schedule an awkward video chat that cuts in and out or book a flight to present a product in person. At the same time, you won’t have to compromise your professionalism or transparency. You’ll have complete control over the final delivery and can quickly receive feedback from the client.

Onboarding new clients 

With client portal software, it’s just as easy to work with clients from across town as it is with clients across the globe. Geography no longer limits who you can conduct business with. Whether you’re sending a proposal or the final contract, your new client will appreciate the efficiency and ease client portals offer, especially during the on-boarding process.

Once your new client is official, client portals allow for document approvals, invoice collaboration, and even billing services. Client portals are a safe and simple way to streamline many, if not all, of your business processes, including onboarding.

Secure file sharing between team members 

Because client portals have two-way sharing capabilities, sharing files between team members becomes instantaneous from a desktop or mobile device. In addition, file sharing becomes more secure as sharing documents through email is full of risks. 

Data breaches are real, yet a 2019 Data Risk Report found that companies still keep thousands of files unprotected. Software options like Onehub have bank-level encryption for your sensitive files coupled with an easy-to-use role-based permission system, which allows for added security with file sharing and collaborating.

Customization and branding

With client portal software like Onehub, you can create a branded experience (without difficult visual manipulations or coding) for your clients that builds trust and recognition. Don’t forget that studies show consistent branding can also grow revenue.

By adding your logo and brand colors to your workspaces with just a few clicks, you can offer a professional experience that clients won’t forget.

Embracing Client Portal Software

Adjusting to a paperless work environment and collaborating virtually may take some time, but both your employees and clients will enjoy the benefits client portal software can bring to the virtual table.

Client portal software can give your business more flexibility to collaborate on projects and more opportunities to communicate with clients in a secure manner. In the end, client portals will create less strain on your company while adding an element of efficiency that you and your clients will appreciate during your working relationship.

If you’re ready to see how your business can benefit from client portal software, reach out to Onehub for a complimentary demo

How to Create a Secure Client Portal

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As companies shift more to working from home and remote workforces, having a secure client portal is an easy and secure way to share and collaborate on sensitive documents. Clients can sign in to their own branded and secure workspace directly from your website, providing a simple and secure way to send and receive documents.  

Creating a client portal is easy and cost-effective and can save you and your clients time and money. Onehub makes creating a customized client portal easy with step-by-step instructions.

A Client Portal Is Easy To Create With These Instructions 

Step 1 – Customize your Workspaces 

Onehub’s branding tools allow you to give your Workspaces your business’s look and feel. Upload your logo and change the colors exactly as you want them so your business collaboration reflects your business. 

Step 2 – Adjust your permissions 

Does everyone you share information in the client portal with need the same level of access and interaction? Onehub lets you assign role-based permissions such as “Viewer,” “Printer,” and “Collaborator” to specific files and folders. Setting the right permissions allows you to invite more free users rather than adding paid ones to your account. You can also take advantage of our secure links to share files without requiring the user to have a Onehub account. 

Step 3 – Use our communication tools 

Simplify interactions with Onehub’s tasks and commenting features. Assign clients with an “Approve” or “Review” task to give them specific directives around materials. Let them know they can add comments alongside files so you can unify communication in Onehub rather than splintering notes off into their own email threads. 

Step 4 – Set up a sign in form 

With a client portal, you can allow clients to sign into and access shared Onehub files with our embeddable sign-in forms that you can insert directly into your business’s web page. To create a form, visit your Account Settings > Custom Sign In Form. Enter your preferred domains, generate the code snippet and paste into your site.

Step 5 – Add white labeling and custom domain mapping

To give your clients the full client portal experience, add our white labeling and custom domain feature. White labeling removes all the Onehub logos from your business collaboration through us, so clients will only ever encounter your firm branding. And with custom domain mapping, all your business file collaboration goes onto a site that you control. It’s a seamless user experience!

If you are a Onehub customer, our support team can help you create a client portal in no time. If you are interested in becoming a Onehub customer, you can contact our sales team for more information, or try us out for free!

3 Ways Onehub Can Help Your Team Work From Home During COVID-19

The coronavirus has disrupted nearly all aspects of life, changing the way we shop, dine, and probably most importantly – work. Employees have been asked in nearly every state across the country – and in nearly every country across the world – to stay home and work remotely.

Whether working from home will be a requirement for a few weeks or months, employers need to understand that it is more than simply giving your employees a laptop and sending them home without any direction.

But, how do you ensure business goes on as usual? With the help of a cloud-based collaboration tool like Onehub, you can help your team work from home during COVID-19 with minimal interruptions. Here are our top three features to help you get the job done.

File Sharing

If your team is setting up to work from home during COVID-19, you’ll need one place where everyone can go to share files. We suggest using a secure file sharing system in which you can invite users to a collaborative virtual workspace area, whether it is to work on and review a folder or an individual file.

The Onehub secure file sharing system is only accessible to those users you invite, whether it’s a client or coworker. Users will receive an email with your branding so that they know the invite is from your company. Then, they just need to set up a username and password. As the user manager, you can grant (or revoke) access to the Workspace, modify the roles of collaborators, and control access from a single, secure location.

Collaboration

Employers need to acknowledge that employees have more on their plates than ever before. Between entertaining younger children, homeschooling older children, caring for older family members, and the stress the uncertainty of a pandemic can bring, employees may not be able to put in the same number of hours they could before working from home. Employees also shouldn’t be expected to work more hours than usual simply because they’re at home. To make the most of every minute spent working from home, collaboration technology that streamlines your employees’ efforts is a must.

Onehub is integrated with both Microsoft Office Online and Google Drive so that employees can create, edit, collaborate, and save files effortlessly. Contributors can post comments and offer feedback with other collaborators, while also reviewing and approving files.

You can even track your team’s progress towards completing a project in the Workspace tasks page and easily communicate your thoughts by posting messages. And, since we are now all juggling family and work, every team member will get instantly notified when someone uploads a new file, posts a comment, or assigns a new task.

Security

No matter how many employees you have working from home, be it one or 1,000, you need to make sure all work is completed in a secure environment. Onehub recommends role-based permissions, which assign narrowly-defined roles to users so that they have limited access to files you control. You should also think about allowing certain permissions – who can download, print, and view your files? This is an important question to think about when organizing a remote workspace.

In Onehub, you can add permissions to your entire account, a Workspace area, or a specific folder, file, or link. Since working from home makes monitoring employee performance a bit more complicated (are they working or streaming Netflix?), you can also audit the entire project and keep track of those who have accessed and worked on content from start to finish. Complex passwords and two-factor authentication also add an extra layer of security.

Work from Home with Onehub

Technology plays an even more important role now that employees are asked to work from home during COVID-19. Yet, even the best technological systems won’t work efficiently if your employees don’t feel safe, secure, and supported. 

Whether you’re right for the role or you assign it to someone else, assign a team leader position. This person can help guide employees through our new normal, and this can be done through file sharing and collaborative technology. Once your employees feel connected, they will gain a sense of structure and your company will remain productive during this difficult time.

To see if cloud collaboration is the solution you’ve been searching for, reach out to Onehub for a free demo.

New Microsoft Office Integration Makes Collaboration & File Sharing That Much Easier

At Onehub we believe in making file sharing & collaboration simple and easy. For the past year we have been working with Microsoft to integrate Office Online into Onehub so you can work with your team more effectively.  With Onehub + Microsoft Office Online you can create, edit, share, collaborate, and store your files while keeping your information completely secure.

Now with Microsoft Office Online Integration you can quickly create a new document, spreadsheet, or presentation right from Onehub. Any changes you make to your files will be automatically saved back to Onehub. No back-and-forth emails, no mixing up versions, and no limits to where you can access your files to get work done.

Co-authoring allows you to collaborate in real-time on a file alongside your colleagues with ease. See who is viewing or editing the file, comment on changes made, and easily update versions. With Onehub permission controls, you’re in charge of who can edit your files or who can only preview them.

Collaborating just got that much easier.

For more information on this feature including browser requirements and file support, please read our Microsoft Office Online support articles. As always, if you have any feedback, we’d love to hear it – post a comment below or email support@onehub.com.

Client Portal: The Best Way to Collaborate Online | Onehub

Explore why Onehub client portal is one of the best ways to collaborate online.

Technology has revolutionized the way companies operate. Thanks to the internet and collaboration tools, employees are more engaged and have replaced the competitive rat race with team culture. Millennials have embraced teamwork over solo projects and tend to encourage collaboration efforts between team members, management, and clients.

If you’re noticing a shift within your day-to-day practices and company culture, take a moment to learn about client portals, the best way to collaborate online.

Benefits of Online Collaboration

Has your company found the best way to collaborate on documents yet? If so, you may already be experiencing some of the following benefits.

  • Cost Savings – Depending on the project, online collaboration could be easier on the company budget. If you’re used to paying for travel costs, expensive dinners that double as meetings, or overtime for employees to conquer a project, online collaboration can help you substantially cut back. Employees, clients, and contract workers can work together in an efficient and resourceful manner.
  • Top Talent – If you need the assistance of contractors or part-time employees for a project, online collaboration can help attract great candidates. Working virtually allows you to hire top talent from anywhere in the world.
  • Easier Scheduling – When you have team members in different time zones, scheduling time to collaborate can be difficult no matter the method. But when a team is working together on a project, taking meetings online makes everything easier. The only requirement participants need is an internet connection. When a team member is working from home or you just don’t have the physical space for a group to gather in the office, collaborating online keeps everyone connected.
  • Continual Progress – Collaborating online means work doesn’t have to stop when the office closes. Employees have the freedom to modify their schedule as needed, a perk Millennials are looking for. Also, if you’re working with team members in several time zones, your project can benefit from minimal down time.

Potential Online Collaboration Pitfalls

There are plenty of benefits to enjoy when collaborating online. However, there are a couple potential pitfalls to look out for as well.

  • Lost in Translation – Both tasks and tones can be overlooked or misunderstood when collaborating online. This can especially happen when working with contractors from different backgrounds. Whether there is a language or culture barrier, internal friction can develop.
  • Equipment failure – Tech equipment can fail without warning. Whether you’re dealing with a low battery, broken device, or an internet outage, progress can screech to a halt when collaborating online.

Overall, online collaboration can be a more positive experience for everyone involved. We always suggest having a team leader oversee a project. They can keep an eye on upcoming deadlines, iron out issues between team members, and develop a backup plan to handle equipment failure.

What Is the Best Way to Collaborate Online? 4 Options to Consider

It seems as though there is an endless selection of tools to help teams get the job done in a virtual environment. Browse through this short list of options to see if any sound like a fit for your unique collaborative needs.

1. Email
Email is the original online collaborative tool. For simple projects or collaboratives between two or three people, email could be enough to hack out a few details, assign tasks, and stay updated on progress.

However, emails can sit unanswered for days and despite the purpose of email, conversations don’t always effectively progress when this tool is used as the only means of communication.

2. Video
There are plenty of free and affordable services to explore if you want to hold virtual meetings. Collaborating through live video is a great way to build and develop relationships with team members who have never physically met.

However, this setup can take more time, technological requirements, and effort to coordinate between large groups.

3. Project Management Apps
Many businesses are turning to project management apps. These virtual to-do lists can be synced between desktops, tablets, and smartphones and allow one or hundreds of users to interact with them. Team members can see what tasks they’re responsible for and what stage a project is in.

While these tools are great for organization and delegation, they tend to be one dimensional and are rarely a stand-alone solution.

4. Client Portal
Client portals are virtual workspaces with security support. Only approved team members can gain access to a client document portal and its contents. Users can be anywhere in the world and enter the virtual workspace when it’s convenient for them. This means the progress of a project can continuously advance. Conversations can take place within the portal through messaging services and there’s less to worry about when it comes to document security.

Client portals allow companies to experience just about every benefit associated with online collaboration. They’re able to save resources, work with top talent from all over the world, and make continuous progress within their business.

Final Thoughts

For some companies, a single tool may not be enough to keep a team on track. Instead, a combination of collaborative options may be the best way to collaborate on documents.

Many have found client portals to be the best way to collaborate online and consider them to be the foundation of their collaborative success. To see if client portals are the solution you’ve been searching for, reach out to Onehub for a free demo.

How to Upload Multiple Files at Once Using Client Portal | Onehub

Learn how to upload multiple files at once using Onehub client portal software.

Do you know how to upload multiple files at once? Do you send an email with a list of attachments? Maybe you only send the most important files and include a summary of the rest? Or do you get frustrated with errors and setbacks and put the task off until you’re calmed down?

Sending multiple files at once can be a time-consuming and annoying task. But there’s no need to clear your schedule to get your files to their recipient. Learn how to upload multiple files at once the easy way by using a client portal.

What Is a Client Portal?

Client portals are branded, private, and protected virtual spaces companies can utilize and share with their team members, clients, or both. In a client portal, information can be shared and exchanged only between approved participants. This makes the space and its contents more secure than other sharing scenarios, such as email.

To access files and documents within a secure client portal, invited users are provided usernames and passwords. As the owner of a portal, you set permissions for who can access a portal, what documents inside the portal they can see, and what they can do with said documents. For example, you can give a new client access to their project portal and allow them to view invoices and certain file details while team members with access to the portal can see the inner workings of each task.

As a business owner, you might have a portal for every client, or have only a few portals defined by the different services you provide. You might have one for employees where digital copies of handbooks and benefit sheets are available. Or you might have one for an outsourced accountant or contractor that has sensitive information you would prefer not to email.

No matter how you choose to use a client portal, they’re a solution to secure file storage for many. And one of the best advantages is that you can upload multiple files at once to a portal, saving you time and frustration.

How to Upload Multiple Files at Once with a Client Portal

The following instructions cover the basics of uploading to a client portal like Onehub. There are other tips and tricks users will come across when learning how to upload multiple files. These can be discovered through a free demo with the service provider.

When you’re ready to upload your files, start by choosing the appropriate workspace from your dashboard. Once inside, you can add stand-alone files or create folders and subfolders as needed. When you know how you want to organize your files, you can start uploading. This can be done in two ways. You can manually choose files from your computer or upload them using the drag-and-drop feature. Once you have confirmation that the files have been loaded to the client portal, you can share them with outside parties via a link or email invitation.

Benefits & Advantages of Client Portals

Now that you know how to upload multiple files at once in a client portal, you may be interested in learning about the several other advantages this cloud-based service offers.

Improved Collaboration Efforts
Client portals make it simple to collaborate with coworkers and team members. Send messages and leave notes within the portal to assign tasks and receive progress reports. Owners of files can see who has viewed, downloaded, or printed a file so they can make sure the right information stays with the right team members.

24/7 Access
Whether you’re working with clients in different time zones or have contractors adding their contributions outside of normal office hours, documents and information within a client portal can be accessed 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Clients appreciate the convenience factor, and everyone wins when progress isn’t limited to a single contributor’s schedule.

Saved Resources
Client portals can save businesses time and money. Sending files through email can be time-consuming for both parties as files are uploaded and downloaded. While there are other file-sending options, recipients aren’t always tech-savvy enough to understand each process, leaving the sender scrambling to find another way to send information. As an employer, client portals should provide peace of mind as they’re a fast, secure, and easily accepted method to uploading and sharing multiple files at once.

Security Features
When files are uploaded and shared through a client portal, there are several security advantages. First, all data is encrypted while in transit and at rest, minimizing the risk of a data leak or breach. With file sharing permissions, only invited parties are able to access client portals and their contents. Documents can be protected with passwords or set to expire after a set amount of time has passed. Overall, client portals minimize risk for all involved parties.

Are Client Portals for You?

When compared to other methods, client portals are an ideal way to upload multiple files at once and then share them quickly and safely with the appropriate parties. When the additional benefits client portals offer are considered, it’s easy to see why they’re such a great asset for so many companies.

To see the inner workings of a client portal for yourself and learn how to upload multiple files within one, schedule a complimentary demo with Onehub today.

The 4 Best Ways to Send Large Files Online | Onehub

Explore the 4 best ways to send large files online using Onehub client portal.

You’ve just wrapped up a project for your boss to review before sending it over to the client. You send an email with the necessary files, but a notice pops up on your screen. The attachment is too large.

What can you do? Break up the file into smaller sections? Only provide your boss with a summary? Or do you (gasp) print your work and walk the project over to your boss’ desk?

While all of these could be viable solutions, a better approach is to find the best way to send large files online. When large files can become an issue, here are four ways to share them.

Large File Concerns

Are we making a mountain out of a molehill or are there really some serious issues associated with large files? We’ll let you decide but here are some common pitfalls of oversized documents.

  • Email services have limits on attachment sizes so large files can’t be sent through email. For example, Gmail limits attachments to 25MB while Outlook only allows attachments up to 20MB.
  • Large files can choke a network if everyone is sending or downloading at the same time.
  • Large files can quickly eat up storage space. Computer space comes at a premium. If a large file isn’t earning its keep, it’s simply taking up important space.

While there are concerns with large files, we also understand that they’re a necessary evil when collaborating and conducting business. Depending on the industry, large files may be unavoidable and common practice. Luckily, there are ways to navigate through or around these large file-related concerns.

4 Ways to Send Large Files Online

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to sending large files online. When it comes to finding the best way to send files online, the answer will depend on your unique situation. Here are a few potential file-sharing methods to consider.

Compression
Depending on the type of file you’re sending, compression can be a simple solution. This option is best for Word and PDF files that are just slightly over the size limit for email attachments. However, compression isn’t recommended for files comprised mostly of images. When working with a third-party compression tool, you can often encrypt and password protect your files for added security.

File Transfer Protocol
Also known as FTP, this method requires you to be a bit tech savvy. FTP lets you to essentially cancel out the middleman and allow outside parties direct access to large files on your server. But depending on your server, there could be restrictions on who can access stored files.

External Storage
For those who are less tech savvy, moving large files to a USB or external drive could be an option. While some might be concerned over the time it takes to get an external storage solution into the right hands (unless those hands are in the same building or town), others enjoy the advantage of not having to download or store files on their own computer.

Cloud-Based Services
Cloud-based file sharing for business is potentially the best way to send large files online. File owners can provide links to outside parties, granting them access to large files. With client portal software, you can skip the download process, storage concerns, and email limitations when sending large files. There are included security features with this method. File owners can see who’s viewed or downloaded a file and require a password for file access or two-factor authentication.

Before choosing the best way to send large files online, consider the solution’s convenience factor, overall cost, and security measures. A convenient solution loses its charm if it’s overly expensive and an affordable solution can suddenly become expensive if it causes a security issue. Find the proper balance for your needs.

Additional Tips for Sending Large Files Online

Now that you know how to share a large file online, enjoy a few additional tips for smarter sending.

  • Stay organized – File organization is always important, whether you’re dealing with a small or large project. Check out our tips for staying digitally organized.
  • Zone in on security – When it comes to file sharing, security should always be the first factor you consider. It won’t matter how simple it is to send a large file if it becomes compromised. Emails can be forwarded, and external drives can be stolen or copied.
  • Be open-minded – A file sending solution for one project might not be the best solution for another. With a multitude of potential solutions to consider, remain open-minded about what will work best for your team and clients.

Final Thoughts

If you’ve been frustrated when trying to send large files in the past, it should help knowing there are simple and effective ways to get the job done. To learn more about why client portal software is the best way to send large files online, reach out to Onehub for a free demo of their services.

How to Send Documents Securely Over the Internet | Onehub

Learn how to send documents securely over the internet with OneHub client portal.

There are plenty of ways to send documents over the internet. The problem is that they’re not all secure methods. Email passwords and document privacy settings aren’t always enough.

In fact, email is a hacker’s favorite target. In just one year, email attacks on businesses increased nearly 500%. When it comes to business email accounts, finding a way in gains a hacker access to sensitive email conversations and data sent as attachments. It might be too late before you even realize a hacker has gained access to your account. The financial cost of an attack can be made up, but the damage to your company’s reputation will be harder to fix.

If you handle sensitive data, be it your own or that of your clients or business partners, here’s how to send documents securely over the internet.

How Are Documents Compromised?

A document can go from secure to compromised without warning, and in a matter of seconds. Hackers have a plethora of methods when it comes to attacking personal information and documents. Below are just a few ways hackers can gain access to your documents, even when you’ve taken security precautions.

Trojan Horse
In this type of attack, a hacker includes a virus in an email or download. If you fall for the bait, the virus is secretly installed in your computer, where it copies everything you type and sends it back to the hacker. When typing up a confidential proposal, you could be sending a copy of your document directly to a malicious third party.

Compromised Password
Think of passwords as a fence around your home. It may deter unwanted guests but it’s not impenetrable. Hackers can learn your password through a data breach, but they can also figure it out with a little bit of detective work. Is your security question for your email password related to your mother’s maiden name or where you went to high school? Such answers can be easily tracked down with an internet search and provide access to your emails and any attached documents.

Open Wi-Fi
If you’re sending sensitive documents through an open wi-fi network, you’re allowing anyone else on the network to help themselves to your data. When learning how to share a file online, knowing to always work on a secured network is an important step.

What Makes a Document Secure?

How often do you lock your house? For most people, making sure their home is secure and locked up before they leave for the day is a habit, and a good one at that. Keeping your documents secure should be a habit as well. There are several requirements to embrace when making document security a habit.

Knowledge
Those dedicated to cyber security take the time to stay up on recent cyber security breakthroughs and news. By staying ahead of the curve, you’re more likely to make smart security decisions.

Commitment
Locking up your home consistently for a year and then forgetting one day leaves you vulnerable to a break-in. In the same manner, securing one document and not the next leaves you vulnerable to a hacker. Treat every document with the same level of security measures.

Protocol
Finally, develop a security protocol that you follow through with every document. This way, when an employee or assistant steps in, they’ll know the exact measures they need to take to meet your security standards.

How to Send Documents Securely Over the Internet

There are plenty of options when it comes to sending documents to colleagues, clients, or corporations. But one method offers advantages and security features that the others can’t. Client portals are part of secure file storage systems based in the cloud. By uploading files from your computer into a client portal, you’re putting several additional layers of protection between your company data and hackers. Here are some tips to sending documents through a secure client portal software provider (like Onehub).

Start by uploading your files to a secure file sharing service. The best services will encrypt your files during the transfer and once they’ve been uploaded. If your document was created on a secure network, you don’t have to worry about hackers gaining access during the transfer process. Your files are always protected.

Once your files have been uploaded, you can invite approved users to view the files within the client portal through email invitations or direct links. As the owner of the files, you can take advantage of additional security measures, like two-factor authentication and session timeouts. You can also view data logs to see who has accessed each file and what was completed during their session.

The main benefit of sending documents through a client portal compared to other file sending methods is the additional security. Protecting an email attached document with a password is like putting it in a cardboard box. But a document in a client portal is the equivalent of a bank vault.

Final Thoughts

Remember to remain consistent and vigilant when sending documents online. Depending on your industry, all it takes is one breach to compromise your reputation and future.

Some industries are more vulnerable than others when it comes to protecting documents. Be sure to check out our article on secure file sharing for accountants, especially if you work with financial information.

For more information on how to send documents securely over the internet, visit Onehub for a thorough demonstration of its security features.