Loomio combines a discussion forum with decision-making tools - encouraging more inclusive, deliberative and participative discussion and decision-making.
It helps you build shared understanding and to progress a discussion towards an outcome, building a record of decisions as you go.
It is often not possible to get all the people together at the same time and in the same place; whether in a physical meeting room, an online video call, or in a real-time chat room.
This means people can be left out of an important decision, or put under pressure in the moment to make a quick decision.
Asynchronous communication allows people to contribute to the discussion and decision at a time that works for them. It is more inclusive, gives people time to think and consider their response, and provides greater opportunity for more people to participate.
As an asynchronous collaboration tool, Loomio can help you include people, have open and diverse discussion, converge towards a clear decision and build an archive for your organization.
Loomio is often used alongside real-time and document management collaborative tools.
Consider the collaboration tools your organization uses and the role each plays.
Real-time video call tools include Jitsi, Zoom or Teams. These are helpful tools for meeting together online and have come to replace many in-person meetings.
- Loomio is not a real-time video tool; however you can use Loomio to prepare for your meeting, find a time to meet, upload and link documents, take notes and capture actions, and link to the video recording of the call - all within a 'thread'.
Mattermost, Slack, Discord, Matrix and Microsoft Teams are real-time chat tools; used by working teams for instant communications - like we used to do across the office. Great for immediate feedback when working with team mates on a project, but messages can disrupt productive work, leave out team members who are unavailable at a particular time and hard to join the discussion later. Chat tools are hard to organize into topics and to make a decision.
- Loomio is not a real-time chat tool; however comments and replies within threads update near-instantly. Threads help keep discussions on topic and to work towards an outcome. Threads enable members to participate in their time without feeling the pressure to be constantly online.
Stored documentation tools such as a wiki, Google docs and OneDrive provide a repository for the important documents of your organization. Documents are a snapshot in time, and quickly become out of date. Collaborative editing and comments within the documents works well for two or three people, but challenging when seeking the feedback and approval from many people.
- Loomio is not a document repository tool; however documents and file can be uploaded, linked and organized in Loomio, so they can be found in context with the work to produce and maintain the documents. Use a Loomio thread to engage people in creating documents, invite feedback and comments, update document with revisions and seek docuoment approval.