As an employee, there’s nothing more frustrating than being unable to do your job because you lack the information needed to move forward. And as a manager, there’s nothing more frustrating than realizing that your team’s productivity is being held back by the absence of this much-needed information.
Unfortunately, there’s no “magic wand” you can wave to free up the flow of information within your company. Managing internal employee information is a process that requires time and commitment, though you may find any of the following program types to be useful in your drive to make this important data more readily available to your workers:
Project Management Tools
One of the first types of software you’ll want to implement in order to manage internal employee information is a strong project management system. Many employee issues stem from unclear objectives or vague directions, so putting a program in place that clarifies priorities and deadlines amongst teams will help to minimize this time-wasting confusion.
When choosing between different project management tools, you’ll have the option of selecting from both on-site software installs and cloud-based “software as a service” (SaaS) providers. SaaS programs will likely be cheaper to implement within your organization, though on-site tools will give you more control over your company’s private data.
Enterprise Q&A Software
Online tools like Quandora and Yahoo Answers harness the power of the internet by allowing users with questions to receive responses from experts (or, at least, people who think they’re experts) around the world. Enterprise Q&A software programs can provide this same type of functionality for your business, facilitating the type of collaboration that allows employees to receive answers to their questions from others within the company right away.
Interestingly enough, the 2012 IBM CEO survey found that this type of collaboration was the number one skill that most company owners were looking for amongst their team members, with more than 75% of respondents listing this as a critical priority. According to Charles DeNault, director of product marketing at SuccessFactors:
“Social collaboration can make everyone a little bit more productive every day. It lets them find the right person, learn how to do something or get an answer to their question faster than before and often in a more dynamic way. It also helps break down organizational silos and helps team work more effectively across departments or regions.”
To learn more about bringing these benefits to your company, take a look at Quandora – one of the top Enterprise Q&A software programs on the market today.
Video and Screen Capture Tools
Another important consideration to make when seeking out tools to assist in managing your company’s employee information effectively is that some internal processes are better documented in pictures or in videos than in typed out responses pasted to an enterprise Q&A program.
For this reason, it’s a good idea to pair services like Quandora with other tools that enable employees to take screenshots and record screencast videos that document processes to be shared with others. Any program that you choose for this purpose should include both the tools needed to capture information in these innovative ways, as well as a storage system that allows all employees to call up and access this type of internal information when needed.
Active Chat Programs
Finally, consider that the types of tools described above are best used as part of an ongoing employee information management process. However, none of them provides the appropriate venue for the types of immediate questions that arise based off the information contained within these systems.
Chat programs used by all employees within your organization provide a welcome alternative to phone calls, which may be intrusive to focused work and impossible to coordinate if you manage staff across multiple locations. At the same time, a good chat program complements the information stored in your company’s information management systems, as it prevents your workers from being stymied by the need for data that isn’t typically stored by the types of programs described above.
Obviously, adding all of these different systems to your company’s information management process is something that should be undertaken with care and with an eye towards encouraging employee participation in all new software programs. But with a little extra effort, it’s possible to use systems like these to dramatically overhaul the way information flows throughout your company, leading to higher levels of productivity and employee satisfaction across the board.