You know the many benefits that intranet software can have for your business. From enhancing employee engagement to offering ready access to the critical data that every company employee needs to do their job more efficiently, effective intranet software helps solve a number of common problems and makes your day flow more smoothly. Unfortunately, your intranet software isn’t a magical solution to every problem that arises throughout your day. There are a number of common problems that, no matter how much you wish otherwise, your intranet software simply can’t solve.
Introverted Employees Who Struggle With Face to Face Communication
In most businesses, there’s, at least, one employee who prefers sitting behind their desk and sending out virtual messages, from emails to text messages, instead of taking the time to walk across the room and carry on a conversation. Sometimes, it would be easier to hash things out in person, but this employee would rather remain in their own space and carry out their daily tasks without interruption. Introverted employees often communicate best when they’re given the opportunity to think through their responses instead of being expected to react on the fly. Since up to 50% of the population falls somewhere on the “introverted” scale, that’s as many as half of your employees who could prefer communicating over the intranet to communicating in person.
Unfortunately, the introduction of the intranet software isn’t going to help bring these introverted employees out of their shells. In fact, it’s more likely to give them further opportunities to choose virtual communication techniques. They’ll be able to take part in forums, look up critical information on their own instead of calling HR over simple questions, and fill out and send forms without ever leaving the comfort of their desk. In fact, introverted employees may find that the intranet helps them be far more productive and communicate much more effectively as long as they can do it from behind a computer screen. They may never have to have a face to face conversation with a coworker again!
Some people are never going to fully trust technology. Whether they don’t like reading from a screen or simply prefer to have a hard copy of any important document, they’re the ones taking over the company printer while they print off page after page of things that could be stored virtually just as easily. Typically, they’re also the ones who are always using the wrong version of a document: a file that’s six months old, a form that’s outdated, or a handbook that’s been updated half a dozen times since the last time they printed it off. Unfortunately, these individuals may not be helped by your new intranet solution.
Here’s the good news: even paper-hoarding employees will be able to make the most of your company intranet. While they may still prefer to print off copies of critical documents or forms instead of filling them out virtually, they’ll always have access to the latest version of each document. If you keep your files updated and make changes to existing documents instead of uploading new ones, you can, at least, be sure that every employee will have access to the latest version of a file instead of the one that was created six months ago that someone saved to their desktop.
Finding Perfect Employees to Fill Positions
Whether you’re filling an existing position that’s gone empty due to an employee who’s left the company or creating a new position to help cover a specific need, finding an employee who will fit well with your existing group is a challenge. You want someone who will get along with the current team while bringing the skills that you need to the table. Even when you find someone who fits in well and who appears to have the skills you’re looking for, you can’t guarantee that they’ll fit seamlessly into the company culture or that they’ll be able to pick up the specific skills they need for their job as quickly as you’d like. Unfortunately, your intranet can’t guide you to choosing the ideal employee for your open position.
Once you’ve hired that employee, however, your company intranet can be of immense benefit. The intranet opens the door to your company culture, giving new employees a look at how things operate from the inside. They’ll be able to jump in and start a discourse with other employees in the forums, find answers to their burning questions without having to call HR every time they realize that they forgot to ask about a particular benefit, and quickly access critical information about projects, customers, and procedures. A streamlined search feature and clear homepage can make finding necessary information simple. Even training is easier when you fully utilize your intranet: key training videos allow new employees to go back and check out critical information repeatedly. Better, they can see processes or check out procedures as many times as they need to in order to cement the concept fully, rather than being restricted to the methods or timelines that other employees find necessary. Thanks to the intranet, before you know it, new employees will blend right in as though they’ve been there for years.
Your employees have a life outside their jobs. While they give their time, energy, and attention to the job at hand when they’re at work, they need the opportunity to get away from work, and your company intranet can’t help them find that perfect balance between work and other tasks or responsibilities. The best intranet software in the world can’t force employees to disconnect from the job and go out and enjoy time with their family. In fact, many employees may find that the intranet software makes it easier to put the “life” half of the equation on hold while they quickly check on “important information” at work. Mobile accessibility means that the intranet is always available, and for many employees, that means stretching work long past the hours when they leave the office.
On the other hand, you can design your intranet solution to reflect the needs of your employees both inside and outside the office. When you’re thinking about useful apps, include the ones that will help employees balance their time. For example, your intranet can:
- Provide an employee calendar that allows them to plan for upcoming days off
- Contain forms or apps for scheduling vacation days or appointments
- Contain important information about your wellness program
- Offer bulletin boards or forums that cover information not directly related to work processes
- Spread newsletters that mention birthdays, weddings, births, and other important dates.
You can’t force your employees to develop a healthy work-life balance, but you can offer them the tools necessary for them to see that the business cares about more than just their contributions to the company as a whole. The intranet allows a greater level of connection to the job than ever before, but it can also help remind employees of their life outside work. Providing those tools is a quick way to improve employee engagement and satisfaction across the company.
If you have encountered similar issues in your workplace or anything else you feel can’t be solved using your company intranet, please comment below, we’d love to hear and respond to your questions and thoughts.
If you’re ready to start designing an intranet solution for your company, contact us! Strong intranet software might not be able to solve every problem your business faces, but it can help improve communication throughout your business, enhance employee engagement, and keep employees connected whether they’re in the office or on the road. Your intranet software isn’t perfect, but it can help your business immeasurably.