Creating a collaborative organisation through technology
Often when businesses talk about using tools like Office 365 to create a collaborative organisation, they’re really just talking about working on Word documents at the same time and saving dramas with version control. But creating a collaborative organisation through effective use of technology can go far beyond that.
Tools that businesses are using to create a more collaborative culture include:
- Video conferencing
- File-sharing technology, both through intranets and the cloud
- Online social communities
These tools encourage brainstorming, ideas sharing and creativity. And thanks to technology, it doesn’t matter where employees are, so collaboration doesn’t need to mean having all your team sitting together in the same room. For some organisations, this can mean creating a more flexible workplace. For more dispersed businesses, technology can create new ways to bring your employees together.
Here’s just a few examples of real-life ways businesses are using the collaboration potential of the Office 365 suite of products.
Solve customer problems faster than before
A great example of how technology helps to create a collaborative organisation can be found at GreenDot client, Qantas. Using Yammer, part of the Microsoft suite of products, Qantas employees are crowdsourcing solutions to customer issues. For example, if cabin crews notice an incorrect meal assigned to an aircraft, they can post a photo on Yammer, notifying the leadership team so action can be taken. Before implementing this approach, addressing this problem would have involved emails, faxed paper forms and long distance phone calls.
Qantas staff are also using Yammer to improve safety, for example sharing tips on safe workplace practices, such as lifting techniques and how to avoid occupational hazards.
Encourage sharing of ideas
In a large organisation, frontline staff often feel like they don’t have the capacity to share ideas with the leadership team – or that the channels that do exist are too difficult to navigate. Again, Qantas has used SharePoint Online to overcome this challenge. With SharePoint as its base, Qantas has created its intranet, called “The Terminal” which features the Bright Ideas Form. Frontline staff can use this form to directly share ideas with head office management.
Simplifying cross-unit decisions
In large and complicated businesses, operational decisions often involve multiple business units, each of which often operates independently of other parts of the business. Qantas was no exception, but it has been able to take advantage of the collaboration features of Office 365 to make a cultural change. For example, purchasing a new aircraft is a decision that involves numerous departments. Previously, each of these departments had its own shared drives and documents would need to be emailed back and forth to other parts of the business. This caused countless delays and problems with version control. Now Qantas uses an enterprise-wide Office 365 platform so all business units can access the same document and work collaboratively as a unified team.
Are you ready to embrace the benefits of collaboration as an everyday occurrence?
GreenDot is a certified Microsoft partner, working with some of Australia’s largest organisations to get maximum value from cloud computing platforms including Office 365 deployments. We’ll help you to use technology to enable cultural shifts and get your team truly collaborating. To find out how we can help you, call us today on 1300 80 11 88.