Why you need a social media friendly office

Enterprise Social MediaA 2012 report(*) from the Association for Information and Image Management shows just how common social media is becoming in business. 37% of the companies researched anticipate using social networking strategies within the next couple of years, while 51% expect to see a more needs-driven usage within specific departments or projects.

At the same time that companies are discovering the value in engaging customers through sites like Twitter, they may be overlooking the benefits of real-time exchange between their employees.

Encourages collaboration across cubicles

Customer relationship management (CRM) software is effective at capturing hard data about customers. Unfortunately, some of the less tangible knowledge that drives a business can fall between the cracks. Companies are energized by talented and experienced employees who bring in new knowledge. The knowledge that those employees possess, however, can be difficult to identify and deploy company-wide. Incorporating a social media tool that encourages collaboration between cubicles is one highly effective solution. In other words, restricting the use of social media could be a dumb move when it may be much smarter to harness its power to create a more open work environment.

Create a constantly participatory work culture

There’s a strong link between the tools employees use and how they behave. In many companies, Microsoft Outlook is still the most common way for information to flow back and forth. Mass emails are clunky and impersonal. In contrast, platforms that enable real-time posts crackle with spontaneity. The dynamic sharing of ideas doesn’t have to be limited to weekly meetings. Creating a constantly participatory work culture is a better option. Using social networking applications that most people already use every day, alleviates a lot of extensive and costly training.

It’s common for global companies to have sales teams assigned to different regions. It’s just as common for grumbling and groaning to arise between these teams when they have to work cross-functionally. A knowledge sharing strategy shouldn’t only be of concern when planning individual projects. It’s important to remember that business operations are always nurtured by the flow of knowledge.

Make a company into a community

There are a myriad of challenges to managing a workforce that’s kinetic and interactive. The truth is, however, that more work than ever is done by remote teams. It’s also already common for employees to access company information from private mobile devices. Actions are the most measurable signs of productivity. Organizations have always been task driven, but employees need a way to share experiences that contain lessons on what’s working and what’s not. Live sharing can prevent useful information from being lost. It can strengthen bonds and make a company into a community.

(*) Social in the Flow – transforming processes and sharing knowledge


Opened by Antoine Fournier, Head of ECM, Input and Output management, Zurich Insurance
Apr 13, 2013.

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