As technology advances, companies that want to keep on top of the business world have identified the need for their employees to share information. By cross-training and supporting a transparent information sharing system, employees can work together to improve productivity and increase profit margins. Follow these four simple tips to improve information sharing in your workplace.
Send Information to a Cloud
One of the challenges of information distribution in the workplace is determining how to disseminate information in a way that will reach all employees. Internal drives keep information secure but make it inaccessible when employees are outside the office. Cloud-based services allow companies to provide information on their employee's terms. With a cloud-based system, employees can access information at their workstation or at home. From smart phone to tablet, employees who have access to employee information from all their Internet-accessible devices can work from home and answer questions with the appropriate company information while out of the office. Cloud-based data sharing is a simple way that cuts IT costs and improves information distribution in the workplace.
Many employers have the infrastructure for improving data sharing in the workplace but employees just aren't utilizing it properly. This isn't always the fault of the employee. Management should take steps to continually train employees on how information is shared in the workplace and what features are available. Even if it's covered in orientation, as employee job responsibilities grow and change, other features may become relevant to their position and helpful to their duties. Whether it's a yearly reminder of what is available on the intranet or a more intensive training session during one-on-one reviews on where to find company figures, targeted discussions on how information is and should be shared within an organization promotes information distribution services and ensures they're being used appropriately. Employers need to help employees by providing annual training on company information sharing software and policies.
Particularly in fields like healthcare and government, the threat of a data breach can make employees overly cautious about what information to share, even within their organization. Information that may help coworkers and management perform more effectively are kept under wraps for fear of violating confidentiality or ethics. Employees who are empowered by education about organizational and occupational information sharing can more accurately gauge what can be shared and what cannot.
Annual training in addition to orientation can provide employees with not only a venue to learn about data sharing but a forum to ask specific questions.
Outside of training, encourage employees to go to legal or HR with questions about data sharing. By providing quality education with time for questions to employees, employers can help guide employees towards expanding data distribution in the workplace.
Transparency starts at the top. Management can help improve information sharing in the workplace by encouraging transparency in their own ranks to help it trickle down to employees. Where employees may be reticent to share information in the workplace, once a manager breaks the ice by sharing their own company information, their subordinates are more likely to follow suit. Management should make meaningful steps to take the lead in sharing and disseminating company information.
While some industries are more tight-lipped than others, managers in all industries can benefit from improved information distribution in the workplace. Whether it's making sure employees access the intranet for company news or helping employees build a platform for sharing company statistics for the benefit of other workers, improving information distribution in the workplace can have a positive impact on business if the right steps are followed.