Workplace stress is on the rise. According to the American Institute of Stress, people’s actual workload is responsible for 46 percent of this stress. Trumping the stress triggers is workplace relationships and job security.
We’ve never been more connected to our jobs.
We are connected to our jobs, our coworkers, and the information we need to do our jobs. But that new unlimited access comes at a cost: the stress and energy of searching for and processing it.
The overwhelmed employee.
“The overwhelmed employee” was first noted as a workplace trend by Deloitte in 2014. This study explains that, “despite employees being always on and constantly connected — most companies have not figured out how to make information easy to find.
“Nearly three-quarters (72 percent) of employees have told us they still cannot find the information they need within their company’s information systems.”
While technology is cited as the cause of this problem, could it also be the solution?
Consumer tech often gets more attention because it’s sexier, but the applications of the same tech to businesses and organizations can have a much greater impact. For example, automation can save businesses an estimated $4 billion per year.
This money saved comes with stress eased and information and knowledge more organized throughout your organization.
Emerging technology can empower employees to collaborate more easily.
When employees eek out answers to problems themselves, and automate their less important work it allows them to focus on more knowledge-heavy tasks. They’re able to do their jobs more easily and effectively to ease their own stress and bring more success and revenue to the company.
Here are three tech developments that are empowering teams to share knowledge more effectively and efficiently.
1. AI allows mentors to pay closer attention to students.
AI and machine learning are already being used in other areas of business, as well as in other learning environments. It’s a natural extension for businesses to combine these applications and focus on ways to use AI in knowledge management.
In any education-focused situation AI can help. Think about the student in the classroom, new employee onboarding, or continuing training. AI can be used to automate administrative and low brainpower tasks.
For example, delivering or analyzing content and organizing information can all be automated. Give this information to teachers, mentors, and managers in the workplace and they’ll have more time.
This allows them to focus more on one-on-one communication and mentoring with employees.
In one Georgia Tech classroom, a professor supplemented his team of human TAs with a chatbot to answer basic questions from students. This chatbot could handle inquiries such as when due dates were and what assignments were.
“We thought that if an AI TA would automatically answer routine questions that typically have crisp answers,” explained Professor Ashok Goel, “then the (human) teaching staff could engage the students on the more open-ended questions.”
This same system could easily be applied to knowledge management in any setting, with common inquiries automated to free up personnel to focus on more unique questions and issues.
2. Virtual training allows organizations to make education consistent.
Virtual training is also giving companies the opportunity to revisit their education processes.
This standardizes education across the entire organization. In large companies, keeping everyone’s onboarding and ongoing training consistent is complex no matter the business model.
You have all these different teams and stakeholders, maybe even multiple offices, contractors, or service providers. Keeping knowledge and the communication of it consistent can be a major growing pain.
For example, employee onboarding is an important experience for all new team members — but that experience can vary greatly. This process is dependent on who’s delivering it if knowledge and processes are not made consistent.
Creating evergreen resources.
Webinars, and other virtual trainings allows you make over that experience so that it’s as consistent and efficient as possible and can grow with you.
For example, when the gaming marketplace G2A was faced with scaling training for hundreds of staff members and sellers. This company used the webinar tool ClickMeeting to hold onboarding sessions and trainings.
People who previously weren’t available to attend traditional meetings were suddenly interested.
These people began in sharing their ideas with new recruits. This solution was especially “helpful in boosting the effectiveness and eliminating problems with communication,” according to the organization’s Head of Marketplace Support, Christian Mendieta. “It also shows new ways of engaging both employees and customers alike.”
3. Smart products change accessibility of remote learning.
Technology like the smart products controlling so many homes also have new applications in the workplace.
There is the making of telelearning more accessible and affordable. This then eliminates a barrier for small businesses.
Previously, it was difficult to provide any kind of group training to an organization or department without extensive resources.
You needed the in-person space — plus technology such as a microphone and projector, and more. It’s a lot of resources to invest in just for one-to-many knowledge sharing.
With smart products like smart app-enabled TVs and voice-powered virtual assistants — all technology has become useful for more purposes.
Business can be conducted via a webinar or teleseminar. You can record a training course — and other resources using their computers. With apps and mirroring — any TV can be used as a screening device to send it out to groups of people.
Alexa for Business and its different skills also make it possible to access on-demand data and information. It is possible to access CRM and sales data over voice.
Connecting, teaching and working.
The amount of information available and necessary for workers today might be stressing us out.
You now have the power to use technology to make things as easy as possible. Today’s business leaders are in great position to convey all of the concepts that their teams need to do their jobs.