Google Hangouts pushed as enterprise collaboration tool

Google is touting the business benefits of its Hangouts video-chat application, which can now be integrated into websites and apps.

The search giant claims using the face-to-face service will help to increase collaboration between employees and allow businesses to provide better customer service.

Hangouts has so far been integrated into various enterprise tools, ranging from project management applications such as Smartsheet to customer support apps such as Zendesk and Freshdesk. Using Zoho Recruit, recruiters can also kick off a Hangout with a prospective job applicant.

"Whether you're a sales rep working in a CRM app or an engineer in a project management tool, it only takes one click to launch a Hangout and your team will automatically be invited," explained Stephen Cho, head of Google Apps and Hangouts technology partnerships in the Enterprise blog.

"You can even improve customer service with the ability to quickly launch into a video Hangout with a client to resolve an issue."

Hangouts is an integral part of Google+, the social network which has struggled to compete with Facebook and Twitter. To boost interaction with Google+, the firm has integrated the feature into its other products like YouTube.

Khidr Suleman is the Technical Editor at IT Pro, a role he has fulfilled since March 2012. He is responsible for the reviews section on the site  - so get in touch if you have a product you think might be of interest to the business world. He also covers the hardware and operating systems beats. Prior to joining IT Pro, Khidr worked as a reporter at Incisive Media. He studied law at the University of Reading and completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Magazine Journalism and Online Writing at PMA Training.