Using social media to engage employees (Part 1 – Why?)

Regardless of your preference, the world is changing. Take employees, for instance. According to the Aberdeen survey, the top concern for senior management today is about engaging their employees. The reason is simple; companies with highly engaged employees are 200% more profitable to their poor cousins who suffer from low engagement with their employee. A recent survey from Gallup concurred that up to 55% employees are simply going through the motions despite going to an economic downturn. Truth be told, people are getting complacent. Where previously an average employee stays for 3.5 years, today’s gen-Y employee average tenure is only 20 months.

No wonder, employees are much more in demand than customers. Talent management is rapidly becoming the top focus of CEOs. And the employees know it. They published their skills and experience on LinkedIn and the talent market looks like eBay. They expect more than just good salaries. According to Workforce Management magazine, workforce flexibility will be a work requirement in 10 years. Today, they look towards a better work/life balance as a job requirement. How then should companies cope with this change?

According to Melcrum, the one thing that top leaders must do is to communicate the future while dealing with todays’ challenges. By communication, we mean two-way conversations between top management and each employee: where directions, ideas and the ensuing feedback ricochet between the different layers within the organization unfettered. And this sounds suspiciously like what’s happening in social networks today. But it is one thing to share personal stories with your friends in FB, but to engage your employees requires a different approach.

This series on engaging employee with social media are examples of some of the challenges and different approach in making social networks delivers real ROI for businesses. We will be focusing on the topic of “Enterprise Social” where social media tools are implemented and deployed within a secured space of a business organization to engage its employees in an effort to drive better collaboration and communication. It covers both the business rationale and also how these solutions can be implemented within SharePoint.

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