Social Network". It sounds like a big company solution, doesn't it? A way
to connect your many thousands of employees spread across the globe, a way to
highlight duplication of effort, and enable more streamlined communications,
particularly closing the gap between leaders and staff. And it's true, there
are huge benefits to be gained by large organisations investing in social
collaboration technologies, as I outlined in my report What is social collaboration?.
interesting is that we are now seeing a tangible shift in the market whereby
it’s actually smaller companies that are turning to social collaboration. And,
actually, there are some very good reasons for this, because the technology -
and the collaborative practices the technology supports and enables - offers
some great opportunities for smaller organisations, particularly those that are
growing rapidly, and are struggling to cope with the impact that growth has on
their culture and the way the business operates.
As UK-based UnLtd - a not-for-profit organisation which
supports social entrepreneurs - found, hiring lots of people in a short
timeframe can provide major challenges for a small business; it's difficult to
onboard them fast enough to keep up with the growing workload. Similarly, many
small businesses have little in the way of an intranet, so it's difficult to
share information effectively to support the accelerated demand. For UnLtd, one
of the major benefits of introducing a social intranet was in better-connecting
its significant mobile workforce - around two thirds of the company's 100 or so
staff spend all of their time in the field, visiting award winners and
partners, rather than based in an office. This means they could feel quite
isolated, and the social intranet has helped to connect them to each other more
effectively, but has also made them feel more connected with the organisation
as a whole.
But there's one more
benefit that is attracting small businesses to social collaboration. Our recent survey suggests that the biggest driver for small businesses now
considering an investment in social collaboration is finding new ways to drive innovation within the organisation. By
connecting employees - and often partners and customers as well - social
collaboration technologies can help spark new ideas, but more than that, they
can help develop and refine those ideas, through bringing together people with
different perspectives, different skills and experiences, to enable those ideas
to become real projects that can improve business processes, or develop new
products or services that bring real, tangible benefits to the business.
There's your ROI, right there.
If you work for an
organisation - be it small, medium or large - that is considering investing in
social collaboration, come and find out how to get the most out of your
investment at Making Social
Collaboration Work, in London on October 15th. We've got a panel of
fabulous case study
speakers - including Virginia Henry from UnLtd - who will be sharing their
experiences, advice and lessons learnt through their own social collaboration
journeys, and it will be a great opportunity to network with experts and peers,
and get your questions answered.
Read more about UnLtd's story in our case study report.#smb #socialcollaboration #Collaboration #Adoption #strategy #casestudy