How can businesses enhance workplace collaboration in the digital era?
The COVID-19 pandemic is a crucial driver of change in recent human history. One of the most prominent disruptions it brought about was the closure of offices and workplaces worldwide, pushing millions of employees to work remotely from their homes as much as possible. Organizations that have long followed conservative policies and restricted employees from availing work from home options were forced to transition into an utterly remote mode of working in a matter of days. A year passed and what leading research and survey reports are pointing out is that the remote work culture that pushed its way into the spotlight in 2020 is likely to remain at large in the new normal. A Gartner survey of top CFOs revealed that 74% of respondents were planning to permanently shift a section of their employees to a complete remote mode of working even after the pandemic.
Firms opting for a majority remote work policy can leverage several benefits such as:
- Improved work-life balance for employees
- More productive work hours
- Lower operations cost with very little physical office space utilization required
- Better talent sourcing as remote work allows a global hiring scale.
However, as firms move into remote work operations, the question of building a team culture arises. Many firms are wondering how to improve collaboration among their employees when most of the staff work remotely.
The answer to this problem lies predominantly in two parts.
- The first part lies in creating a cultural shift to make your employees more accommodative of remote work demands and act responsibly with the freedom of flexibility granted.
- The second part is empowering employees with the right digital workplace tools to help them succeed with their daily routine when working from anywhere.
On this note, let us explore the top five ways to help employees improve workplace collaboration.
1. Streamline communication
The most critical aspect of achieving collaboration efficiency in the workplace is establishing a seamless communication framework. Should leaders address employees from time to time, peer-to-peer communication, or external client or vendor communication, there should be a robust communication ecosystem. It should comprise a powerful email system, instant messaging capability, intranet facility for employee engagement, feedback surveys and corporate announcements, business phone systems functioning over VOIP technology, and so on.
Organizations need to define and implement an effective communication policy that outlines a framework that guides staff to find the right personnel for a query and the right medium to reach out to them. This will enable better and more productive communication, especially when employees are not working together in a physical space.
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2. Enable productive meetings
In almost all workplaces, tasks are often driven to completion through effective teamwork. For team members to remain in sync with each other and other dependent teams in a larger project exercise, there is a need to facilitate effective meetings or discussion sessions periodically. Daily stand-up meetings and monthly or weekly review meetings are a few examples of sessions that team managers can plan to foster a unified work approach. When remote work mode comes into the picture, enterprises must on-board digital workplace platforms like InfinCE that allow seamless audio and video conferencing capabilities. These would enable online meetings and discussions to happen more engagingly and interactively. Besides, colleagues can also get a chance to see each other once in a while which is an excellent social culture that promotes healthy collaboration in the absence of physical office activities like teatime chats and team lunch breaks.
3. Seamless information access
Once communication policies are set in place, the next important aspect in facilitating an improved collaboration experience in the workplace is seamless information access. Employees may require access to critical organizational information such as contacts of other employees or customer information, access to marketing or technical collateral for work tasks and customer engagement, information such as policies or IT guidelines, and much more. To promote seamless information access, organizations must ensure that they have a centralized information repository on their internal workforce collaboration platform. It should promote secure file access, exchange, and privileged access provisioning to ensure that confidential information is guarded against unauthorized access. Information access needs to be ensured from multiple devices such as laptops, smartphones, and from anywhere.
4. Empower employees with productivity tools
In the digital era, employees need access to multiple productivity tools to manage their workloads. These may include document tools, spreadsheets, presentation tools, and report generation tools to ease their daily task effort. Enterprises must provide seamless access for employees to such productivity tools and ensure that these tools offer instant virtual collaboration so that different employees can work together using these tools and collectively drive tasks to completion. It will be vital in a scenario where a majority of the workforce is engaged in remote work.
5. Enable efficient project and task management
Another helpful feature or productivity tool to have in a workplace is an efficient task manager, which will enable seamless coordination between different dependent teams or individuals and help manage responsibility while transparently improving collaboration efficiency. Team members need to be aware of how their task progress impacts the work of others. They also need to know the dependencies that should be managed transparently.
As businesses continue to navigate new norms in the digital era, workplace collaboration becomes a significant pillar for overall business success. This is where InfinCE can be the one-stop enterprise management solution that helps manage people and serves as a robust digital backbone for your business.
InfinCE covers all aspects from operations to customer relationship management and employee management with its wide range of enterprise apps available for each function. Get in touch with us to explore how your business can improve workplace collaboration by on-boarding InfinCE into your digital ecosystem. If you are excited to get on-board and try the powerful work collaboration software, we would like to invite you for a 30-day free trial here.