Intuitively, we know this. But too often, the modern business environment seems designed to dampen the collaborative spirit. Silos, corporate hierarchy, and most of all, being geographically dispersed, can make communication-driven collaboration a challenge.
Now, cutting-edge communication and collaboration technology is bringing workers together by keeping frontline teams connected and informed. These innovative tools are how business leaders and employees are creating successful teams in an increasingly dispersed workforce.
Download our 2022 Frontline Trends Report to learn more insights into improving the frontline employee experience.
The Importance of Collaboration in the Frontline Workforce
The importance of collaboration tools has skyrocketed over the last few years. According to a Gartner survey of employees in the United States, Europe, and Asia-Pacific, there has been a 44% increase in the use of collaboration tools between 2019 and 2021. However, only 49% of frontline workers are equipped with mobile devices. That means businesses are missing out on critical opportunities for collaboration and ultimately limiting their success.
Let’s take a closer look at why collaboration matters:
- 86% of employees in leadership positions blame workplace failures on a lack of collaboration (Zippia)
- Collaboration can lead to a 10% improvement in productivity (Forrester)
- 43% of workers say that promoting collaboration and team-building is the most important aspect of an effective workplace (Gensler)
- 85% of employees who use communication and collaboration tools report being happier at work (Wrike)
These numbers back up what savvy business leaders already know: communication is key to collaboration, and collaboration is critical to success. But knowing this and putting it into practice are two different things.
How Communication and Collaboration Technology Operates in the Field
Successful communication and collaboration in the field prioritizes the following key elements
Promote Mobile and Multichannel Productivity
One big difference between the centralized corporate world and a mobile, frontline workforce is the lack of central communications. A frontline manager can’t just send an email to everyone; not everyone has a company email, and frontline workers aren’t behind a computer all day.
To make central messaging possible for frontline workers, a mobile-friendly tech stack is needed. Communication software that can send messages, videos, and other communications through mobile allows you to reach everyone, no matter where they are.
Enhance Top-Down Communication
Being part of a team motivates employees. But too often, frontline employees receive corporate communications that trickle down from third- and fourth-hand sources, where the messages get muddled and muted. They often don’t feel like they are connected to the broader organization and are left without a clear view of company goals and objectives.
Communication and collaboration technology that enables direct communication from management to the frontline serves two purposes:
- Executives can clearly and concisely get their important messages out, without playing telephone.
- Employees can understand overall goals and their role in achieving them.
The best collaboration platforms also encourage employees to engage with the message and confirm they’ve received it. Then managers can easy follow up with employees who haven’t read the messages.
Support Two-Way Communication
Staying agile is essential to running a thriving business in a rapidly changing economic landscape. That means making smart changes. It also means being transparent. Communication and collaboration technology helps management explain the how and the why of new policies and practices to ensure everyone is on the same page. Not only does this allow for faster, more efficient implementation, it also boosts morale.
In fact, 86% of frontline workers say that context around change is vital to their happiness.
Communication shouldn’t be a one-way street. After all, frontline workers are often the ones who take the ideas born out of the boardroom and put them into practice. The right software allows employees to communicate with management about how the rollout is going and share ideas on how to streamline processes. When workers are engaged and empowered to provide input, teams become stronger, more productive, and more innovative.
Promote Peer-to-Peer Communication
If you have 30 retail stores, it can often feel like 30 different teams. But customers don’t want 30 different experiences. They want one team that works together to reliably provide outstanding service. Communication and collaboration technology makes this possible.
Communication software helps frontline workers brainstorm, streamline processes, and promote more cross-functional collaboration. These tools help people know each other, learn from and teach each other, and become one cohesive team.
A Seamless Solution
Frontline workers are busy. Management has a ton on their plate. Everyone from top to bottom of the organization is dealing with a changing economy, staffing shortages, and day-to-day stress. Communication and collaboration technology should reduce that stress, not just add another gadget or process to an already busy day.
Beekeeper’s mobile workforce management platform is easy to use, simple to navigate, and extremely effective. It’s an intuitive and simple way to share everything from messages to videos to corporate announcements. Beekeeper facilitates two-way communication, bringing together the entire team.
With Beekeeper, collaboration doesn’t require more work: it enhances the work you’re already doing.