So you’ve launched Workplace by Facebook in your company: what now? OrangeTrail has been using Workplace by Facebook long enough to experience many advantages (and pitfalls!) of the platform that we did not anticipate. What has been most interesting though, is finding little gems in the system, creative ways to use the platform that support and enhance the way our team collaborates.
We’ve been talking about Workplace by Facebook for a while: we’ve reviewed the platform extensively here, talked about how the platform benefits leadership and spoken about the impact of Facebook’s entry to the enterprise social network scene. However, after using the platform for a while and launching the platform for several clients, now is the time to get into the nitty-gritty of it:
So, let’s dive in!
From text to photo
We’ve seen Workplace make the collaboration process a much more visual one – in addition to providing a smooth and painless digital collaboration environment.Here's some examples of the ways in which Workplace has impacted collaboration:
A team of salespeople has started to use the video functionality to quickly update each other in between meetings. Previously, at the end of each week, they would update the rest of the team with a quick summary of the meetings they had and their outcomes. This meant that the rest of the team often only found out about new prospects at the end of the week, and only had a minimal amount of information on the status of the sale. If they wanted to know more, the sales agent would write them an email, taking time and resulting in overflowing email inboxes. By using video updates at the end of meetings with sales prospects, they quickly updated the rest of the team by filming a quick video and uploading that from their mobiles, ensuring that the rest of the team knew the status right away, and got a lot more information about how the meeting went.
Company wide meetings and town halls have become much more accessible due to the live streaming options. We’ve seen company wide meetings be livestreamed directly onto Workplace, reducing the need to fly in people from other locations, and eliminating much of the hassle of organising online meetings, while also providing a straightforward spot to post relevant documents, and organise feedback and follow up.The livestreamed video was immediately stored and made available on Workplace, so employees could go back and watch anything they missed. Because these meetings were cheaper to organise like this, companies can have them much more frequently - employees are better informed, can give input to management very easy and are kept up to date on the current state of the business.
We’ve seen creative teams work successfully with Workplace: an example is a content marketing team that used photo-albums in their group, to keep all the visual elements of a campaign in one place. They also use the photo albums to organise branding pitches, gather inspiration and to gather and request feedback on images that would be used in online campaigns.
Small things can have big impact
So, how can your team get the most out of this platform? We’ve mentioned some cool ways to use the platform above, but there is so much more beyond that. Here are some examples:
Nicknames make skills searchable
If your organisation is large enough that not everybody knows each other on a first name basis – here’s a trick for you: Have your employees add their core skills as a nickname on their profile. Now they can find each other by skills!
Translate like a champ
Workplace’s auto-translate option has gotten some buzz – but a really powerful feature is the fact that you can post in different languages at once. Say someone in a leadership position has an important, but sensitive, announcement to make to the company: by writing his post in several languages at once he can make sure that the important nuances of his message are captured in every language.
Using reaction to make decisions
We’ve seen examples where teams were using reactions to confirm consensus on an issue: by requesting that team members place a specific reaction to a proposal “React with a heart if you agree”. Before this, simple likes on posts proposing a change in policy would result in ambiguity. The person making the proposal was left unsure if they simply liked the post in passing, scrolling through their news feed, or if they were firmly agreeing with what was proposed. By using the reactions, the team removes the ambiguity of a like (“Did Tom just like this in passing, or does he agree with this approach?”
With all of this in mind, what are some interesting Workplace (or Enterprise Social Network - ESN) tricks you’ve seen? Let us know on Twitter! Also, if you’d like to have more tips & tricks on ESN’s and digital collaboration reach out to me via e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.