| IMAGESBAZAAR |
Employees today have easy access to social networking sites and any attempts to banish it may not be well-received. So, maybe, it's time to reconsider one's notions and find a way to benefit from social networking.
By Ankita Shreeram
Employees typing away at their Facebook walls and giggling at inappropriate moments when they are supposed to be finishing the next crucial project – it's the ultimate corporate nightmare! And yet, it's becoming a commonplace phenomenon in most workplaces. So maybe it's time to reconsider one's notions and find a way to benefit from social networking rather than make futile attempts to banish it!
Anything becomes engaging and ‘fun' to use when conducted using the platform of social networking, as organisations are increasingly beginning to see. "The use of social media is growing and is seen by many companies as a natural extension of how to build closer relationships with employees, establish an interactive relationship with them and also extend the use of its corporate content i.e their social interactions. Any type of collaboration between employees involves content and today organisations are deploying technology which allows employees to build their own network of people, follow them, like and share ideas/content with them, and also get instant updates when new content or ideas get shared," asserts Vivek Pai, country head - India, Alfresco Software Ltd.
"The objective of engaging employees on a social media platform should be to improve internal communication among employees and the organisation, along with giving the employees the opportunity to get to know one another besides professional reasons. Social media can be a fantastic platform for them to mingle and exchange ideas which in turn can be extremely beneficial for the organisation. It also gives the employees a causal environment to express themselves which may necessarily not be the case in a boardroom. The information sharing can be that of interesting facts, ideas for improving the organisational processes, and topics about which the employees are passionate about. The response to such activities will definitely be favourable among employees, which in turn will be in the best interest of the company," agrees Kailash Tarachandani, CEO, Kenersys India.
Turning the bane into a boon
The wonders of social media are as easily applied to one's own organisation as anything else. "Intex keeps its employees connected via a common Facebook Group where we actively keep them informed about our new product launches, changes in HR policies, press articles appeared on Intex & industry etc. Each department shares their new ideas, steps initiatives undertaken by them which help us in keeping the peers well informed and updated. Additionally, to make it more interesting the team keeps posting various HR driven quizzes and polls which in turn help us gain an instant feedback from the employees," illustrates Chetna Katyal Sundaram, senior manager, marketing, Intex Technologies (India)Ltd.
"In addition to providing the capability of social content sharing within the organisation, enterprises are also providing their employees, the ability to dynamically publish content onto consumer Social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, SlideShare, etc. For example, the HR director can choose to post their JD to LinkedIn in order to attract the right talent or the marketing director can post the corporate presentation to SlideShare and win new customers. These social content publishing capabilities empower employees to share and collaborate with users within their organisations and with the external world," shares Pai. "It's very important to engage with employees in real time and the bigger the organisation is, it becomes all the more important to stay connected and exchange ideas. Advancement in technologies is providing solutions to bridge that gap for e.g.: social networking and micro-blogging sites such as Facebook and Twitter enable the workforce across levels to foster knowledge sharing on new ideas, initiatives for businesses and other administrative or HR issues such as a new policy etc," suggests Sundaram.
It's thus quite simple to utilize the interactive and engaging features of social media to keep employees fruitfully occupied!