The uptake of social media has considerably altered workplace culture; in many instances leaving companies wary of the impact that the use of these platforms can have on business productivity. While the initial corporate sentiment of apprehensiveness toward social media, may have subsided over the past couple of years, many companies are still grappling with providing employees with official access to such domains during work hours. That said, a new wave of mobility is currently underway, with increased device proliferation and improved internet connectivity through these devices. Social media has therefore blurred the boundaries of the workspace and a majority of companies today have developed policies around acceptable usage of such platforms.
While there is visible cautiousness around social media use from an individual standpoint, companies have become more conscientious about the productivity that can be garnered through effective usage of such platforms from a business standpoint. As a case in point, recruitment teams have largely benefitted from tapping the potential of social media platforms, and are able to effectively gauge their background and industry exposure through mediums such as LinkedIn. Moreover, the recruitment team can also specifically target its audience appropriately through a variety of segmentation that is available on such platforms; thereby reaching out to the right audience from the onset. It has also considerably simplified the process for candidates who are able to share their profile easily with their company of choice.
Furthermore, from an organizational perspective, companies are also creating customized social platforms to drive better collaboration in-house among their workforce. This enablement allows employees to communicate faster and improves sharing of data, all while ensuring that security measures are adhered to. As social media encourages a quicker response than that of email, these platforms help boost productivity and encourage participation irrespective of geographic location. Companies have also been able to create digital engagement platforms to enable the workforce to connect with various support functions i.e. IT and HR functions. This provides a quicker turnaround for inquiries which traditionally had a longer response time.
From a core business perspective, the emergence of analytics has proved to be a game changer. Companies are now poised to be able to garner better insights into their customer’s behavior and selectively target specific customer groups’ basis their preferences. For instance, Intelenet® developed and deployed a Social Media Analytics tool for a leading Financial Institution, to be able to plot customers' profiles and assess how the customer lifecycle engagement could be improved. The company was then able to appropriately identify which channels were primary influencers in customer's decision-making process for specific financial products, and connect with them accordingly.
In conclusion, incorporating social media into the overall organizational set-up requires a more inclusive approach and constant improvement to be able to leverage the plethora of potential these mediums have to offer.
As stated by a pioneer of the self-improvement industry Paul J. Meyer, “Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning and focused effort.”
Driving productivity through social media enablement too will, therefore, require ardent organizational commitment.