Building an Internal Social Media Network for Employees

It’s difficult not to see that social media is a critical part of our lives and today’s connected world. The same statement applies tocompanies where many businesses have considered or are trying toimplement an internal social media platform.

 There are multiple benefits of having such a platform, with the main ones outlined below:

  • Helping employees collaborate and share information
  • Give everyone in the company a stronger voice
  • Strengthen company culture
  • Pull up discussions, data and more within few minutes
  • Generate ideas and work on projects in real-time

A great example of a company taking advantage of all these benefits is Lenovo. Their social media marketing lead, Roderick Strother, revealed thatexternal social media channels like Twitter and Facebook can feel toonoisy within a company.
Internal social media is a growing trend. Employees share mostexternal news about the company as well as presentations and videos from internal company gatherings and other events.

Building an internal social network

Internal social networks are a leapfrog opportunity. Organizationswho want to build their own platforms have to go through the followingsteps:

Choose a cloud provider

Cloud computing plays a vital role in storing data shared on socialnetworks. A large number of service providers like Google App Engine and Microsoft Azure enable companies to access virtualized resources. Cloud computing is also ideal for big data analytics, allowing users toaccess unstructured and structured data.

Of course, it should be noted that cloud security is also important. Not having it can lead to security gaps, loss of data that would beshared on the network, performance lag, poor ROI, and difficulty incompliance. With effective protection that maximizes the potential ofthe social network, you can secure critical applications and data across your digital environment and platform.

Get developers on board

Development that’s PHP-based or based on another language should be set up on the local company network. Then, you should getdevelopers and designers to build and configure the complete solution.There are several types of development engines you could use; perhaps asuitable one would be suggested by your cloud service provider as you’dbe hosting a lot of data on their servers.

Sites like Udemy has video lectures that existing employees (from the IT department) can take inspiration from. Knowledge about basicprogramming languages like Javascript, CSS and XHTML can be refreshedwhile staff members can update their skills by acquiring knowledge onAJAX, WebServices, jQuery, OOP, Python, MS SQLServer database and more.
Ideally, if there’s an IT department inside the company, internalresources should be used to build the network rather than outsourcingthe entire project, even if it costs more. That’s because internaldevelopers know the company culture well and are likely to developfeatures that’d actually be used by employees.

Prototype and launch

Prototyping is important to see the response the social networkreceives from staff members. There is a risk of failure becauseemployees might be accustomed to external social networks. That’s whereit’s important to communicate the importance of company privacy and howinternal networks allow room for collaboration and building of companyculture.

The prototype should be changed if the initial response is negative.After employees give a positive response to a certain prototype, thenits features and development modules can be used to make an actualplatform and launch within the company.

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