In this new era of Covid-19 pandemic, organizations have adapted to the new normal of allowing an increasing number of employees having to work from home. However, there are greater challenges associated with remote working, especially when employees can feel disconnected and isolated from their active work environment. As a result, many companies are using diverse strategies such as switching over to a social intranet to keep their employees motivated and engaged, while helping to maintain business productivity.
Can remote working be helpful to all employees?
According to MIT survey in April 2020, nearly half of the American workforce might now be working from home since the pandemic, whereas just 15% of the employees used the remote working option pre-Covid. Research reports have suggested working from home improves mental health and ensures good work-life balance while ensuring high productivity. On the contrary, there has been some scepticism regarding the effectiveness of the work from home culture, as face-to-face teams tend to provide better results compared with virtual teams.
At the same time, there are greater challenges faced by the employees who work from home in terms of communication, collaboration, and connectivity with the workforce leading to isolation and frustration. However, modern Intranets may have the best solution to address the growing concerns of employees who are forced to work using the remote option in the current situation.
How to use social intranets to engage and encourage employees working remotely?
Intranets have always remained an integral part of every organization for sharing and dissemination of information among employees. However, today they have gained greater significance due to the existing pandemic situation, where work from home has become the norm for most employees across countries. As a result, the social intranet like The Hub are emerging as a viable tool for businesses in boosting communication and networking capabilities among their internal teams during these stressful times, helping businesses to monitor and boost their employee wellbeing.
For starters, remote working solutions such as social intranets comprise of multiple communication channels including real time connectivity with discussion forums and document sharing for accessing information while connecting and collaborating with each other. Making life easier and more connected for remote workers helps to maintain a happy remote working environment, and at the end of the day, a happy employee is more productive.
Here are the top 3 ways in which social Intranets may be used to boost your employee morale:
1. Enhances social communication abilities
One of the biggest challenges faced by remote working employees is the lack of ability to communicate and socialize with their peers in the group. This can add to monotony and lead to social isolation for employees who prefer to stay connected with each other. Thus, Intranets like The Hub may prove to be valuable in reducing these barriers, using group forums, social news channels and chat options with colleagues to stay in touch, informed and discuss topics of interest or seek suggestions from the group members.
2. Gather employee feedback for improved collaboration
Social Intranets may be used as an effective medium for gathering employee feedback opportunities, through social engagement features on news articles, through to suggestion box forms and staff polls and surveys. Your intranet is a vital tool in gauging the mood of your employees, and by providing a number of different feedback outlets you can encourage positive two-way communications with your remote working employees, letting them know that their voices and opinions are still valuable, even though they may be far away geographically.
3. Promotes effective learning with knowledge sharing
Intranets serve as a central repository of all the vital information which can be easily accessed by the employees working remotely. For example: product information, departmental resources, FAQ help sheets, online request forms, etc. By embracing the digital workplace and digitising your company information, you make for a more productive work from home environment, where the employee has everything at their digital fingertips to do their jobs effectively. By having all the tools at their disposal, this can help to reduce stress levels for remote workers, making their jobs a little easier. In addition, sharing regular company updates and staff news helps to keep employees informed, reducing that feeling of isolation.