Successful businesses thrive off people and their relationships. Everyone works with an array of individuals; there are those that that you employ, those who you work with on a day to day basis, partners you do business with near and far, consumers that you sell to, the list is endless. These individuals and their work are the bloodline of your company’s success. But how do you communicate with all these different silos of people? How do you fully use all their different talents ?
Organizations that are outperforming others have been able to seize and cultivate a more collaborative environment. They use tools to help people build and maintain relationships no matter where they are in the organization. Those that have embraced Social Business are collaborating across their organizations and finding answers and experts quicker than ever, working on projects with colleagues in California while they sit in their offices in NYC in Real-Time, and also comparing best practice guides to make sure they aren’t repeating mistakes other colleagues have already made.
Every department within your organization can benefit from Social Business:
– HR Department: can increase overall employee productivity and job satisfaction through improved knowledge capture, expertise location, and collaboration. Travel, training and teleconferencing expenses also can be reduced by implementing wikis and activity templates. Hiring in-house employees will also become easier by being able to search for specific qualifications in employee’s profiles, reducing time and money spent on brand new hires. Employee morale will increase with the easy ability to connect to one another to gain insight on projects and answer pending questions, in real-time.
– Research and Development: quicken internal idea sharing and discovery, as well as transform how they generate ideas, share strategies and gather feedback from key customers and partners.
– Customer Service: With more immediate access to content and expertise, customer service representatives can work more efficiently and provide higher-quality service. They will be able to access “Best Practices” for situations while on the call with the customer and be able to provide them with a solution that another teammate has already found.
– Marketing and sales teams can have more time to spend with customers and to dedicate to customer-focused initiatives. They will be more knowledgeable with wikis, blogs and best practices published by fellow sales people on product forums. They will have access to information throughout the organization and on an array of products as well as communication tools in real time, and team rooms to hold team meetings. Access to product experts will also become easier than ever with employee profiles stating their skills,experience and expertise.
– The expense of travel to face-to-face meetings can be reduced through online expertise location; project-based commenting, messaging and status updates.
– Employee training costs can be reduced ,faster ramp-up of new hires.
– Employee turnover rate can be reduced by creating a more engaged and satisfied workforce.
– Teleconferencing expenses can be reduced with real-time communication
– Reduced need for email storage
– Reduce cost of hardcopy, printing and distribution
– Reduce time spent answering repetitive questions.
– Discover work that has already been done before your department embarks on the same project another department has already accomplished
– Create a feedback forum after a conference call instead of multiple individual calls and emails sent to the call’s host
– Shorten development cycle and foster innovation by being able to collaborate with the right experts, the first time.
– Create relationships across the organization to be able to find experts when needed through knowledge management tools like wikis, blogs, discussion forums and shared bookmarks
IBM has put together IBM Connections, a suite of Social Business software with messaging and unified communications all on a single home page. It is open to new capabilities as they are developed, and already has hundreds of plug-ins to allow your business the ability to customize it to fit your needs and products already used. Its platform is able to bring global visibility to every employee and his or her contributions, all on an easy to use user interface that most employees are already familiar with.
The homepage is similar to that of Facebook, with a running feed of recent activity, status updates and profiles of coworkers. There is a search tab to find specific colleagues and also access to create and join communities. In these communities people can tackle challenges common across all locations and skill sets so those working at different locations will be able to reference past projects and results. Users can create and view Wikis and blogs that share the knowledge and expertise of other users, as well as provide feedback and comments for the writers. Forums are available to encourage discussion of pressing business issues, again creating an interactive area where feedback can be received on important issues. Status posts, profiles and listings of activities help employees previously stuck in silos to learn what like-minded colleagues are working on and share successes and challenges. Support for tags, community bookmarks and sharing of files make it easy to locate knowledge and best practices.
Social Business is not only in the future of the Business world, it’s happening NOW. With remote workers, organizations with multiple locations and team activities, having a more collaborative environment is essential for success in Today’s business world.
Here is a quick download on the ROI of Social Business, read it through, and let me know if you can afford to NOT move forward with implementing a more social environment.
Contact us today at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule your Business Value Assessment to see how implementing a Social Business Solution can help your current organization collaborate more efficiently to ensure the success of your future.