As we’ve charted developments in the internal social media and collaboration space, we’ve seen many overinvest in the latest and greatest technology platforms. These efforts, such as implementing internal Facebook or Twitter-esque applications, met initial enthusiasm only then to see early adoption rates plummet and to struggle justifying value created for the business. (Two that have worked well, however, are Sabre’s employee connection center or MITRE’s peer learning platform.)
For the most part, these efforts failed because the platforms were non-intuitive and without an obvious purpose or benefit. Many companies wasted time and effort on employee sharing solutions that simply couldn’t compete with employees’ personal options. Before your Communications team begins experimenting with new social media options for employees, here’s what you need to beware of:
- With significant investment and application of the right principles, companies can create tremendous value from tools that allow employees to connect with and learn from one another.
- Companies should beware of efforts that require significant investment but feel unnatural for employees to use; these efforts will disappoint.
- Communications can leverage existing live and virtual employee interactions to redirect energy towards strategies that encourage peer learning.
The question for communicators is not simply, How do I use internal social media to better communicate with our employees?, but also, How does my organization use social media as a collaboration and learning tool to drive employee performance and productivity?
The Four Fs of Social Media Collaboration
To answer this question, I turn to a framework in use by leading HR practitioners and developed by our sister program, CLC Human Resources. In their research, they simplify the 4 Keys to Effective Social Media-Enabled Collaboration into the easy-to-remember four Fs:
- Focus: Aligning social media collaboration objectives with business objectives
- InFrastructure: Selecting a platform that supports these objectives (admittedly a bit forced on the F here!)
- Filter: connecting individuals with relevant, just-in-time information
- Facilitate: Managing collaboration efficiently and effectively
Imagine if Communications, Human Resources, and Information Technology (alongside business partners) sat down and used these four keys as a starting point for a productive conversation and planning session about the future roadmap of employee collaboration? We can help you better understand these four pillars and how to use them as a guide for investments at your company by joining our upcoming webinar on Driving Collaboration through Social Media.
Join Us to Guide the Social Media Strategy at Your Organization
Be the champion for productivity-enhancing uses of social media at your organization by joining us on May 18th for a webinar on Driving Collaboration through Social Media. In just one-hour you’ll learn how to:
- Make the business case for your organization on the benefits of creating a more collaborative environment
- Embrace three key imperatives in their internal leverage of social media to drive more effective collaboration
- Implement easy-to-use toolkits to adopt these practices at your organization
CEC Related Resources
- How to Use Social Media to Create Networks of Support Among Employees
- Fostering Supportive Peer-to-Peer Communication (The MITRE Corporation)
- Internal Social Media Vendors
- How to Work with IT
CEC Related Blogs