I don’t know if this may sound familiar to you but our intranet is not mobile-ready nor has any collaboration capabilities.
Our big news is, we have started to move into the cloud, to share information between each other and finally become “social” with Yammer.
Last year, Deloitte found 67% business leaders seeing growth in “work-based social media”, and 82% considering a hyper-connected workplace as very important, with only 45% ready for it.
If all of them are right, what are we waiting for? Is there something we should consider seriously before adding an ESN to our intranet and starting this big journey?
Changes in communication strategy
Our traditional intranet uses the Pull communication strategy, that is, information is made available to the company so any employee can read it. This way they can read it anytime they wish. Moving to a social platform makes us think of Push notifications and the distraction it generates. This is the reason traditional companies avoid this type of platforms. However, Yammer allows us to control these notifications and customize them by posting to specific groups, using announcements or tagging individuals. Take a few minutes before publishing in Yammer and think about those people who should be notified of the information you will share, just as we do when typing the recipients of an email. Different than email though, posting in a Yammer group allows the messages to be discovered by others than may or may not be included in an email distribution list.
Establishing a two-way communication
Our traditional intranet is a good communication channel, but unfortunately most of it is one-way. We know our new employees, our policies and procedures. We can view the photos of the last event and we even participate in surveys, but we cannot interact with the content. Moving some of these interactions to Yammer allows us to react to the content we read, answer questions, provide or receive feedback. This helps to generates a two-way dialog with the HR Team and our employees feeling connected and "available" to them. And we are excited to use live events to continue strengthen ties between leaders and employees.
Dealing with negative sentiment
After making our information “public” in a social platform, many of our first thoughts were how negative comments would flood the platform without control. This can result, for example, in the community manager monitoring comments 24x7... But there is good news for you, Yammer allows us to "analyze feelings" using Azure Cognitive Services and Flow as mentioned in this post. This way, we will receive notice every time a negative post is detected in Yammer and we can decide our next steps are and how we want to respond and react.
We feared that productivity would be threatened
A McKinsey global survey from 2016 cites three collaboration features included in social technologies, like ESN, as the same three features that improve how organizations work.
The same survey cites social technologies, like ESN, as tools expected to increase collaboration across the whole company in the short term.
Now let’s see how ESNs are a tremendous opportunity for gaining productivity through information sharing and collaboration.
So with the data in hand and our own organization, we thought about the cost reduction in meetings, with an ESN you can have document collaboration, messaging, file sharing, content management, conferencing and the traditional one-to-one meetings in one single platform.
And while we know the changes and adoption doesn’t happen overnight, we know it’ll be great for our employees’ long term. Employees can quickly find key information, view team calendar, see content shared by colleagues, wikis, ask questions and get answers. Did I forget to mention remote workers have the same chances to collaborate with the ones at the office? This was key for our growing remote workforce.
Implementing an ESN can be a big challenge, but the more you wait for it, the more you could be losing the opportunity of adding Yammer Super Powers in your organization.
If you are willing to change, but you still have doubts and you do not know where to start, I recommend visiting the Yammer Adoption Resources website that contains fail-safe information so you can implement best practices for implementing Yammer in your organization.
More about the author:
Hello, my name is Christian Aznaran and I'm passionate about feedback and technology. I currently work in Human Resources, but with my background as a Computer Engineer I am always trying to unite those 2 worlds: people and technology.
At our company in Peru we are currently leading the great challenge to move from the good old-fashioned intranet to a more social and integrated platform that is Yammer, along with Teams and Office 365.
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