Tip of the Week: How to Improve Your Internal Collaboration
For any business to be successful, its inner workings need to be able to work together seamlessly, each with a defined role and purpose. While we usually stick to talking about how to make your IT more collaborative, we’re devoting this week’s tip to ensuring that your employees are also capable of effective collaboration while using these solutions.
To do so, we’ll discuss a few things that you have to make hard and fast policies for your employees to follow.
Establish Roles and Responsibilities
One of the most important features of successful collaborative efforts is the role that each person has in the greater process, and what they are responsible for as a result. While collaboration is a great way to help expedite the completion of tasks and projects, this is only the case so long as redundancy doesn’t enter into the mix.
In essence, you need to establish a firm order of operations within your collaborative efforts, especially if that collaboration crosses between different departments of your team. Any of the benefits of collaboration can be eliminated if someone does the wrong thing at the wrong time - and this confusion most often erupts when someone in the process is unsure of their role, and what responsibilities they have as a result.
Here’s a quick example to provide some hypothetical context: Let’s say someone in Department A begins a project. In their collaborative workspace, once that project is finished, it should be sent to a few resources in Department B to review and revise as needed before being enacted.
This scenario only works if each person in the process understands what their role is, and what responsibilities that role has within the greater process. Returning to our example, any benefits that the collaboration may have had are negated if someone acts out of turn. In this case, once the project has been reviewed by the resources in Department B, Department A shouldn’t touch it again unless specifically asked to by Department B, who should then repeat their actions. Otherwise, mistakes that the review process would have caught can go unnoticed, and negatively affect the success of the project as a whole.
Establish Firm, Yet Flexible, Goals
On a related note, your goals need to be designed to help outline these responsibilities in a clear fashion, leaving little room for assumptions to be made. By providing your employees with goals that are based on definite outcomes, you are removing the ambiguity that leads to the complications described above and enabling your processes to move forward more effectively.
However, this doesn’t mean that you can’t reexamine these processes and make adjustments to these goals to further improve them after you’ve seen how well (or not) they work. In fact, this is a crucial part of running a business successfully.
As far as solutions go to enable collaboration, Directive has you covered. Reach out to us at 607.433.2200 to find out how you can encourage clearer communications within your operations.