Corporate Intranet Blogs: Increasing Productivity and Community
Intranet blogs offer many benefits to businesses, including improved communication between management and employees, enhanced availability of feedback from employees to their supervisors, and easy access to archived information. Blogs also aid in building a sense of community in an organization, thereby improving employee morale and productivity. The advantages to setting up an intranet blog are enormous, whether you offer a separate blog to each employee, create a blog specific to each department, or enable all employees to read and add content to one, main, corporate blog.
Blogs are incredibly easy to configure and maintain, and require very little money to deploy. User privileges, administrative access, and security features take only minutes to arrange, and blogs require no advanced knowledge to use. Any employee able to send an email has the skills needed to create a blog post. Adding blogs to your existing intranet is not complicated, and because they are so simple to set up and require little effort to maintain, they will not strain your IT staff.
Allowing all company employees to keep a blog will dramatically improve communication. Blogs can be updated on an as-needed basis, and can be used to share information with other employees and management. Blogging can reduce the amount of time spent in meetings, on conference calls, and sending emails – significantly increasing the time your employees spend on their regular job duties. There will no longer be a need for employees to frequently contact other departments to ask for progress updates, as those details can be posted in real-time.
The use of RSS feeds can increase the benefits of intranet blogs even more by allowing for syndication and distribution of blog content to all members of your organization. RSS also eliminates the risk of important information being captured by spam folders, and is especially useful for keeping remote employees updated on important events and information.
Permitting employees to leave comments and feedback on other blogs will encourage collaboration and assist in the development of teamwork. Blogs can be used as a means of monitoring employee concerns, and can provide an easy way for employees to directly leave feedback for their supervisors.
In addition to the immediate benefits that blogs provide, they are a very effective and simple way to archive important information. Emails tend to become lost or buried, which can result in a significant amount of time spent searching for information when it is needed. Blog posts can be sorted and archived by date or topic, enabling employees to quickly located important data in the future. Most blog platforms allow for instant categorization of posts, which means no time or money is lost when creating your database.
Blogs can also be an invaluable tool when it comes to establishing a sense of community within an organization. Blogs can offer employees a voice who might otherwise feel insignificant or unappreciated. They also allow employees to form better relationships with coworkers, and can encourage creative thinking and participation in company events.
Blogs are one of the most effective tools at improving communication within an organization. Even so, they have been slow to catch on due to concerns that blogs might reduce, instead of increase, employee productivity. Moreover, many organizations worry that allowing employees unlimited freedom of speech and access to information may present security risks that traditional forms of communication do not. Evidence does not justify these fears.
Organizations that have used, or are currently using, intranet blogs have noticed an increase in productivity and employee morale. Blogging requires less time than writing, reading, sorting, and deleting emails, and employees who feel recognized are typically much more eager to perform at their best than those who feel neglected. Security risks are easy to manage by the addition of passwords and network firewalls - and intranet blogs are not at risk for being thrown in the garbage pail without being sent through the shredder first.