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Finding Innovative Ways to Utilize Social Media

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Social media is a great way to build relationships, but it turns out it can be used for business process improvement. An Indianapolis firm is using an enormous network to be more efficient in customer service.

A company called Crossroads Business Solutions provides a variety of IT services to their clients. This includes state-of-the-art telephone systems that makes use of VoIP (Voice-over IP) technology. Although the handsets are sleek and well-designed, they do require some training to use. Rob Green, president of Crossroads, realized that the most effective technique for teaching customers how to become more productive with these phones would be to leverage the world’s largest social network.

So how is this a form of business process improvement? Take a quick peek at the first minute or so of their video:

Of course, this clip really only applies to customers of Crossroads Business Solutions, because of their preferred configuration. But it’s also a way to do training. This program requires no travel and does not need to be repeated for employees who can’t make a live training session.  With more and more companies having multiple campuses and/or using remote contractors, using social media as a training platform makes both logistical and economic sense.

Social media also allows for integration of platforms. A company can house a training video like this one on YouTube and incorporate images from Flickr, Pinterest, or some other image-centered site while setting up a private Facebook page to encourage on-going dialogues about training issues and post updates.

No process improvement initiative is effective without buy-in and engagement from employees. Social media delivers in that respect. The voice on the video is already familiar to customers, so there’s a built-in trust factor present from the beginning, as opposed to introducing a corporate trainer previously unknown to those being trained.  The total number of views gives a rough idea of the number of people who have watched the training, allowing for better monitoring and record keeping. Crossroads can even use the comments section to answer questions, or through the Facebook page or other social channels allow people to share their thoughts, give insight, ask questions, give answers, or provide feedback. And because these conversations on social media are archived, newer trainees get the advantage of learning from those previously trained and the company gains a record of “trial and error” during the training process to use as a foundation for making adjustments.

Training

© Flickr user Maryland GovPics

There’s a creative advantage to using social media for training, too. Different social media platforms allow users to set up quizzes, polls or games. For example, a company introducing a new content management system might invite trainees to build their own web page using what they’ve learned during training. The trainees can then post links to their creations to the closed company training group on Facebook and participants can vote on which site they like best by using the Facebook “like” button. The possibilities for creative interaction on social media are endless.

Process improvement is both science and art: not only do you need to pay attention to measures like efficiency and effectiveness, but you must be able to be inspired to a given situation. Rob Green found a better way to train and support customers, which in turn will help by improving worker and telephone productivity.

It might seem like video training is nothing new. However, leveraging YouTube is a much more effective process. Improvements to everyday business take creative thinking which will actually increase improve employee satisfaction at work. Help your company to be more successful and more productive. Reach out to the Indianapolis consulting firm, AccelaWork, today!

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