December 28, 2016 | Written by: Brad Hunstable
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Most professionals place a premium on communication and transparency in the workplace.
More than half (52 percent) of workers who took part in a recent Society for Human Resource Management study indicated that management’s communication of the organization’s goals and strategies was important to their job satisfaction. Many companies, in turn, pay a premium to facilitate communication, spending thousands transporting and accommodating an increasingly remote workforce for an annual, in-person, company-wide meeting.
The goal is to reunite the organization under common values and goals ahead of the new year. But in reality, 72 percent of employees report they don’t fully understand the strategies of the companies for which they work, according to a survey by Ustream, an IBM company.
The challenge of bringing the workforce together will only become more challenging to accomplish at scale. Based on the data, a company’s finances may be better allocated toward consistent communication of company goals than plane tickets. Streaming video can help fill the gap.
Shrinking the distance
Numerous companies are already required to institute new systems that unite their distributed employees. IDC projects that by 2020, mobile workers will account for 72 percent of the US workforce. As this shift occurs, the virtual meeting — supported by streaming video — will become the approach for companies of all sizes to shrink the distance between corporate headquarters and remote teams.
Rather than allocating thousands for face-to-face meetings, executives can use video to communicate effectively while cutting costs. According to the Ustream report, spending just $100 per employee on communication can yield a 50 to 1 return on investment. Compare that to the average expense for air travel, which ranges from $1,000 for domestic to $2,500 for international flights, compounded with additional transport to and from the site, refreshments and other expenses. What’s more, travel can drain employee productivity and create stress.
According Gallup’s State of the American Workplace report, re-engaging employees could make a dent in the $450 to $550 billion companies lose annually due to loss of productivity. Effective communication can help companies address the 58 percent of employees that report wanting better insight into the company’s next steps, according to Ustream’s survey. Another 63 percent of employees reported wishing they heard from company leadership more often.
Using data to hold meaningful meetings
Streaming video solutions can not only help organizations share important messages, but also ensure those messages resonate. In the near future, machine-learning technologies such as IBM Watson will enable management to gauge the social sentiment of attendees by analyzing their Q&A and social activity during a virtual meeting. They also will be able to conduct deep analysis of how employees engage with and share recorded video content from these events.
Companies can use these and other insights from Watson to refine how they share content with their workforces during virtual meetings. Over time, these efforts can help to ensure that no one within an organization is unaware of the company’s performance and goals, or unsure of how they, as individual employees, are helping the business achieve those objectives.
Learn more about IBM Cloud Video.