Long gone are the days when employees chatted around the water cooler. Heck, they don’t even chat around that fancy flavoured bubbly water machine you had just installed.
The 2020 pandemic forced many companies to embrace remote work, and it’s here to stay. A survey by PwC found that 74% of workers would like to continue working from home at least two days a week once offices reopen.
So how can you create community and company culture with people spread out in different places?
What will be the water cooler 2.0?
The answer may lie in embracing an enterprise social network platform.
What is an enterprise social network?
An enterprise social network (or ESN) refers to a private social network that only company employees can access.
The ESN works like a modernized version of a company intranet with features such as likes, comments, and activity feeds. So you may also see an ESN referred to as a social intranet.
Why you need an enterprise social network
Traditional social networks like Instagram and Twitter threaten workplace productivity. Instead, you can use an internal ESN to improve your efficiency and help your employees feel connected.
An ESN helps you:
- Simplify communications — Most enterprise social network software providers offer secure chat features for easier collaboration and communication.
- Create a single knowledge base — ESNs give your employees easy access to policies, procedures, and guides that support their work and keep them engaged.
- Secure collaboration — When employees use personal Wi-Fi networks or a public coffee shop network to access work materials, it can create an increased cybersecurity risk for your company.
Using private ESNs for communication and collaboration can help you protect your company’s information and data.
- Place to create culture online — Let’s face it, most of your employees already use social media to stay connected with friends and family. An ESN helps them connect using the same features.
Top tips for getting employees to engage with your enterprise social network
An ESN is like any other tool. It won’t provide benefits if nobody uses it. Here are some enterprise social network best practices to get your employees excited and engaged.
- Get leadership to buy in — Change starts at the top. Encourage leaders to have a visual presence on your ESN.
- Establish guidelines — Create a consistent experience by setting basic guidelines that outline how employees should use the ESN.
- Find internal ambassadors — Influencer marketing works inside your company too. Identify those internal leaders who can lead the ESN charge.
- Load it up with relevant content — Encourage use by uploading commonly referenced documents and using your ESN for internal communications.
Final thoughts: can an enterprise social network work for your company?
At the end of the day, people still build relationships by connecting. Technology can’t replace human connection, but it can support it. And the more your employees feel like a part of the team, the more likely they’ll stay with you.
Explore Blink today to learn more about enterprise social network tools that can support your team by streamlining communications and boosting the employee experience.