More Easily Identify and Solve Business Pain Points with a Social Intranet


Ingnorance is bliss, but what you don’t know can hurt you. Take employee engagement as an example. While it’s tempting to think that it affects only outward-facing employees like sales and customer service, it actually impacts everyone—from the front line to the back office.

If employees aren’t satisfied with the workplace, they don’t work to their full capacity or potential. The marketing department struggles because their visions don’t align with the company’s mission. People in product development might stay late to get a product to market, but they’re likely looking for new work opportunities if that’s a repeated occurrence.

copy.gifAs for job security, it’s a concept of the distant past. If workers don’t feel that the workplace cares about them, why should they care about it or protect its intellectual property?

That’s a single example of how a social intranet can identify a business pain point. More importantly, it can solve it. If you have information about the state of affairs in the workplace, you can do something about it. As you do, you monitor the effects with the social intranet and refine from there.

Employee engagement isn’t the only problem a social intranet can solve. It can solve these three, too.

  1. Operational Efficiency

Operational efficiency gives you a competitive advantage. It streamlines workflows and decreases operational expenses. Overtime? Kept to a minimum. Bottlenecks in processes? Gone.

But discovering where, when and how overtime and other business costs are happening is the tricky part. It requires a careful assessment of the business and its day-to-day operations.

Fortunately, it isn’t an unachievable task. Use the social intranet to analyze existing workflows and processes. Next, set a baseline. From there, test ideas and refine as the data dictates.

In that regard, improving operational efficiency isn’t unlike any other measurement activities in the workplace. If you’re monitoring employee health, you start with a baseline. If you’re ramping up marketing efforts, again, you again have a baseline. You should always where you are before moving onto bigger and better things, and a social intranet is the perfect way to dig into operations, define metrics and better the workplace.

  1. Productivity

Let’s say you’ve fine-tuned operations. Everything is humming along splendidly. Your work isn’t done; oh, no. You’ve decreased operating expenses, which translates into larger profits and net margins, but you can still improve that top line.

The secret here is productivity. People might be getting more things done in less time than they used to, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re making the best use of their time.

UseOfTime.gifThe only way to know that for sure is through productivity assessements, as facilitated by your social intranet. Use the platform to measure productivity and performance in three ways:

  1. Macro-level: measure the entire company
  2. Mid-level: measure a single department or team
  3. Micro-level: measure an individual employee

Capitalize on the information discovered and use it to create a greater competitive advantage. For example, you may find periods where work performance consistently plateaus. Use that knowledge to shake things up. Mash different teams together to solve a problem. You might be surprised by the creative solutions they come up with.

  1. Security

Employees who aren’t purposefully doing anything bad—they’re doing their best to serve the company well—can compromise the workplace by inadvertently breaking security best practices. They might put sensitive information on a flash drive. Maybe they have financial data on their personal laptops or other devices. Their goals are good; their efforts, not so much.

A social intranet prevents many of these security risks. When information is easily accessible on a platform where people can also do their work, company assets stay secure. Nothing leaves the intranet without someone in IT knowing it's wherabouts.

Plus, it helps employees. Best security practices become the norm because they have been given an easy way to implement them. They don’t have to remember 10 passwords to keep company information secure. They only need the one that gets them into the intranet.

A social intranet is so much more than a social collaboration tool. It’s a treasure trove of data. Dig into it, and you’ll find the business intelligence needed to keep employees happy, drive down costs and increase profits, and keep business property and intellectual assets secure.

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