Virtual collaboration is an outgrowth of audio conferencing, video conferencing technologies provided over the internet, and other forms of computer mediated communication. It involves at least two people working together to accomplish a task without meeting physically. Virtual collaboration allows many people to collaborate on many ideas, topics or projects in both synchronous and asynchronous time. Some of the most common uses of virtual collaboration include interactive meetings, virtual training, and onboarding new employees. Virtual collaboration is also revolutionizing the field of education. Organizations involved in virtual collaboration also utilize virtual collaboration technologies as a means to reduce travel expenses and boost employee productivity.
The clearest example of this is illustrated by the rapid increase in telecommuting and remote working and the concomitant rise in virtual collaboration solutions. A very modern and highly effective, though sometimes controversial, form of virtual collaboration is open virtual collaboration. Open virtual collaboration allows persons with a connection to the internet to seek out participation from others in the design and development of new ideas, processes, products, and services for personal and commercial purposes. Information technologies such as tagging and filtering simplify the process of finding collaborators online. By accessing the collective intelligence and wisdom of non-affiliated persons connected via the internet, organizations involved in business collaboration can access knowledge and expertise that might otherwise require significant cost and effort.