Twitter, Facebook, Orkut, Linkedin etc. – you surely wouldn’t have missed at least knowing about sites if not have an account on them. They have brought the onset of social media into the world consciousness. Social networking has turned out to be a phenomenon across the world. It has gripped a large audience from the age group of 15–60 years.
Some of the mind–boggling statistics include –
- More than 500 million users on Facebook worldwide
- More than 190 million users on Twitter tweeting 65 million times a day
- More than 60 million users on Linkedin as of July 2010
- More than 19 million unique visitors on Orkut in India as of July 2010-09-14
The number of users of social networking sites as well as the average time being spent on each one of them is increasing by the day.
Even though India has been relatively slow in adopting this new technology, social media has seen good adoption. Seeing this trend, companies like TCS, Cognizant etc. are introducing in–house social networking platforms as a means to retain their young employees.
Some of the biggest problems facing these IT majors in dealing with the young employees are –
- Very high attrition rates due to a variety of factors like not happy with the work, with the pay etc.
- Very high restlessness of the generation-next due to want of doing something new, not being happy with the present work, decreased satisfaction etc.
- Since these youngsters are already exposed to new technologies like social media, mobile media etc, they feel at odds when they have to handle technologies like cluttered email boxes (which they sometimes refer to as old age or pre–historic)
The HR departments of large companies are understanding this and are taking steps to ensure lower attrition due to these factors.
For example, Cognizant has started Cognizant 2.0 or C2 which is an in–house Facebook like platform which allows one to connect with thousands of other people and share and discuss ideas without the intervention of project managers. It has 60,000 active users and gets more than 6 million page views daily.
TCS uses wikis and personalized websites like Justask and Ideamax which enables employees to ask questions in an easy and frank manner and also discuss and analyse various ideas and innovations. It has more than 50,000 members
These social media platforms are being used increasingly to plan, collaborate and team up to solve various business processes and make important business decisions –
- Cognizant 2.0 manages the entire workflow and process flow from the start of the project till the time the customer experiences it across various geographical territories and organizations. It makes the entire experience innovative and interesting
- TCS is inculcating a social culture in their organization through these platforms which would help individuals know each other better
- Both these social networking platforms help the employees collaborate and understand each other better. It also helps find the right individuals who would be good at a particular project / job and encourages them to ask any questions openly without any hesitation
Though these companies have banned social networking sites like Twitter, Facebook, these platforms could prove to be beneficial in the long run for a variety of reasons. Currently though there are no statistics to say that such measures have eradicated the problems facing these companies. Only time will tell as to whether this is just a passing fad or a real solution.
What are your views on it? Would social media platforms like these remove the employees attention from important tasks?