The best performing teams out there need more than just the latest and greatest tools – they need a collaborative and supportive culture that fuels an internal sense of team.

Unfortunately though, for most organizations, there are barriers to building the culture you want which, according to the Total Economic Impact of Workplace by Facebook Forrester Report, can be grouped into four main areas:

  1. Breaking down decentralized structures and silos – Organizations need to open up the communication pipeline and bring their company-wide entities together.
  2. Engaging disconnected employees – Employees who don’t feel connected to the company, such as frontline workers, don’t always have the right tools to communicate with colleagues.
  3. Making leaders more open and accessible – Hierarchy structures and limited communications tools mean leaders are distant. This leads to a lack of employees feeling like they can communicate, ask questions, and share information with those above them on the corporate ladder.
  4. Enabling and driving collaboration – Without proper collaboration tools, employees don’t have access to the information they need to do their jobs and are unable to effectively connect and collaborate with colleagues.

By utilizing internal collaboration platforms like Workplace by Facebook, organizations have a real opportunity to connect their workforce, build culture and increase productivity like never before. Here are five ways bots on Workplace by Facebook can help combat the critical communication issues being faced by your company.

1. More engaging and effective company wide communications

Effective corporate and leadership communication matters – a lot. Only 14% of staff feel connected to their business HQ, and this drops to 3% when referring to the C-Suite. That’s 97% of staff feeling disconnected from leadership within their organization.

Fortunately, Workplace by Facebook offers several features that provide organizations with ways to communicate with staff and send out company announcements in engaging ways:

  • News Feed – The Workplace algorithm places important and popular company content at the top of the feed.
  • Live Broadcast – Deliver company announcements and news through a live video format which you can treat like hosting an internal virtual event.
  • Official Groups – Workplace admins can create groups and clearly label them as being official places to hear company news.
  • Pinned Posts – Posts to these groups can be marked as important or pinned to the top to further increase visibility.

Alongside native Workplace features, using an Announcement bot you can automate the process of sending company news to specific groups of staff and confirming they’ve read and understood the information.

Using an Announcement bot you can ensure staff are seeing important company news and information – whether that be information contained directly within the bot, or links to specific posts on Workplace you need staff to have seen and read.

  • Broadcast content – Admins can send scheduled alerts and announcements to either the whole company, specific groups, or a particular segment of staff.
  • Ensure information visibility – Leadership can track if announcements have been read and automatically prompt staff who haven’t read announcements.
  • Provide news/content alerts – Staff can subscribe to specific news topics, for example, if you have a news-hub blog API.
  • Submit news – Encourage staff to submit potential news stories, and create a “bottom-up” approach to company news instead of the typical top-down relay of information.

2. Encourage peer recognition and build an internal culture of positivity

Employee recognition is hugely important, as it boosts staff engagement and decreases staff turnover. For example, 79% of people who leave a job do so because of a lack of recognition and 69% would work harder if they felt their efforts were better appreciated.

But, despite the importance of recognition, only 14% of organizations provide managers with the necessary tools for rewards and recognition. And, when we look at the cost of these programs, US organizations are spending over USD 100 billion annually on incentive programs. That’s a huge amount of money.

Workplace has a number of native features that can be used to recognize and celebrate the achievements of staff:

  • Platform familiarity – Since Workplace looks like Facebook, a social platform we are all familiar with, there is an inherent social-community aspect of Workplace, making public and peer-to-peer recognition obtainable.
  • Tagging feature – staff can tag their colleagues and give them public shouts outs in posts or groups using interactive elements like GIFs, emojis, and videos.
  • Workplace profile badges – Reward staff with recognition badges that are added to their Workplace profile as another way to drive public recognition.
  • Thanks feature – Say thanks to your colleagues by writing a message on Workplace and having that turned into an image and posted to your colleague’s wall.

Another popular use case for bots is to create an intuitive and automated recognition program that lives directly within Workplace.

Our Recognition bot has been adapted and rolled out by several organizations, including WW (formerly known as Weight Watchers). WW even named their recognition bot Ripple because of the positive “ripple effect” this bot had across their organization.

Using an employee recognition bot, companies can communicate corporate values, encourage staff recognition, save and share nominations and drive positive reinforcement at every level within the organization:

  • Schedule broadcasts – Automatically welcome users and schedule broadcasts at your desired cadence to prompt staff to nominate their colleagues.
  • Create an engaging experience – Include visual media like GIFs and emojis, to make the process fun and match the tone of voice of your company.
  • Reiterate company values – Team members can select the specific company value that they feel a colleague embodied through their actions
  • Capture and share data – This information can be saved to third party systems like Google Sheets and posted into a public Workplace group for the rest of the organization to view, engage with and comment on.

By sharing these nominations on a public level, you can further communicate core values, encourage sought after behaviors, and create a positive feedback loop through the entire company.

3. Measure staff morale and gather their feedback

Measuring morale and gathering feedback from your workforce is also crucial in creating a connected and collaborative working environment and making staff feel that they’re valued and their opinion matters. 53% of workers are in the ‘not engaged’ category at work and 54% of employees say they are voiceless. So clearly there is a need to be better about making staff feel heard or valued.

Workplace understands the need to measure morale and gather feedback from staff and have some great features that help with this:

  • Broadcast and live video – Host an “Ask me anything” session with C-suite to provide an open forum for staff to ask questions or provide feedback.
  • Polling – Polls that live within Workplace groups and Workplace chat are an easy and effective way to give staff a way to communicate their opinions.
  • Native surveys – The recent addition of the native survey feature on Workplace allows admins to send up to five questions to anyone in their community via Workplace chat.

Using bots on Workplace you can automate the process of sending out surveys and gathering feedback from staff.

A survey bot allows you to keep an ongoing pulse on staff morale on a monthly or quarterly basis as well as send out impromptu surveys to specific groups of staff about certain topics or issues that you want their input on:

  • Customize your audience – Send surveys to all your staff, specific groups, or custom segments on Workplace.
  • Ask follow up questions – Ask follow-up questions based on their answers and go into more detail on certain topics.
  • Send auto prompts – Automatically prompt staff to complete surveys if they haven’t already.
  • Download and share data – Download the results and save survey responses to spreadsheets, Workplace Groups, or send them to relevant decision-makers.

4. Track tasks and encourage internal collaboration

The concept of “work” is changing to incorporate people across distributed teams, remote workers, and cross-functional departments. These teams and individuals may be far apart geographically, but they still need to communicate and collaborate in real time. 75% of employees rate teamwork collaboration as “very important” but 39% of employees say people in their organization don’t collaborate enough.

Luckily for us, Workplace was designed to help organizations encourage social collaboration, openness, and cross-functional connectivity and has a number of ways for staff to share what they’re working on and help each other on projects.

  • Groups and MCGs – Groups help project teams communicate and work together, whether they be from one company or multiple companies in an MCG.
  • Workplace Chat – Allow staff to easily chat with colleagues and work together using Workplace chat from a desktop or when on-the-go on mobile.
  • Video Calls – Run remote scrum meetings via a video call on Workplace.

Bots can also help automate the process of task tracking and sharing project updates with colleagues or potential blockers with managers.

Sharing what people are working on with the relevant team members can end up being a hugely time consuming task – both for staff who’s calendars get filled with hours of weekly catch ups and for managers. In fact, 23% of managers spend 5+ hours a day on tasks like team time and task tracking.

Fortunately, a bot can help save everyone time and improve the sharing of project updates between colleagues and with managers:

  • Schedule daily, weekly or monthly broadcasts – Automatically check in with staff or team members at a cadence that suits the project in question.
  • Capture key project information – Ask staff for updates on what they’ve been working on and what they’re planning on working on.
  • Flag blockers with managers – Automatically alert line managers or colleagues to blockers that are stopping staff from getting work done.
  • Share data with necessary team members – Save and share project updates to Groups on Workplace, increasing visibility and encouraging input and collaboration from peers.

5. Crowdsource knowledge and ideas from frontline staff

Failing to tap into your workforce’s knowledge is a huge missed opportunity. About 98% of business leaders agree that ideas should come from everyone, although just 62% report seeing it happen.

The main issue here isn’t that ideas aren’t being shared – over 45% of frontline workers share their ideas with senior team members. The real problem here is a lack of action on these suggestions.

Workplace offers a number of native features that can help all levels of staff share their knowledge and ideas:

  • Chat and group functions – Organizations can encourage staff to share opportunities, knowledge and ideas in specific Workplace Groups.
  • Cross company collaboration – Create multi-company groups and allow staff members to collaborate and share ideas with other organizations and partners.
  • Polling feature – The polls feature within Groups and Workplace chat also allows feedback and ideas to be shared.
  • Auto-translate – Connect all your staff, regardless of office location or language barriers, by using Workplace’s auto-translate features.

Using bots on Workplace it’s also possible to automate the process of crowdsourcing ideas and knowledge from across the organization, whether they be frontline staff, factory workers or desk based employees in HQ offices.

  • Send broadcasts to staff – Send broadcasts to all staff or specific groups of staff asking them for ideas and input on a specific topic.
  • Automatically categorize ideas – Gather data relating to the idea, like what problem this could solve and what benefit it would bring to the company.
  • Save and share data – Save staff input to spreadsheets and automatically share to Workplace Groups or with relevant decision makers.

A new way of working using bots on Workplace

These five use cases can help you combat common workplace communication issues, foster a new way of working and save staff and managers huge amounts of time. Furthermore, by making staff feel valued and recognized for the work they do, these bots can help improve company culture, morale and staff retention.

To learn more about bots on Workplace or to schedule a demo, click on the link below to get in touch with our team today.

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