Yammer, a robust enterprise social networking platform, offers organisations an opportunity to revolutionise internal communication and collaboration. To fully leverage its potential, it is crucial to understand the implementation process, explore its various features, and customise the platform to suit specific organisational needs. In this article, we will delve into the detailed steps of implementing and customising Yammer, along with practical tips on how to maximise its usage within your organisation.
- Assess Organisational Needs: Identify the pain points and challenges in your current communication and collaboration processes. Determine how Yammer can address these needs and align with your organisation’s goals and culture.
- Formulate a Strategy: Define clear objectives for implementing Yammer, such as improving cross-team collaboration, fostering knowledge sharing, or enhancing employee engagement. Develop a comprehensive plan that includes adoption strategies, training programs, and metrics for success.
- Establish Executive Support: Gain leadership buy-in and support for Yammer implementation. Engage executives in communicating the benefits, setting expectations, and leading by example.
- Designate a Yammer Administrator: Assign a dedicated Yammer administrator or team responsible for overseeing the implementation process, managing user access, and ensuring platform governance.
- Define Yammer Networks: Determine the scope of Yammer networks within your organisation, such as creating a single network for the entire company or setting up separate networks for different departments or regions.
- Configure Network Settings: Customize network settings to align with your organisation’s requirements. Define security and privacy settings, enable specific features, and establish network-wide guidelines for usage and behaviour.
- Integrate with Existing Tools: Integrate Yammer with other tools and platforms used within your organisation, such as Microsoft 365 suite, SharePoint, or project management systems, to streamline workflows and ensure a seamless user experience.
Driving Adoption and Usage:
- Create Awareness and Excitement: Launch a comprehensive internal communication campaign to introduce Yammer to employees. Highlight its benefits, showcase success stories, and encourage early adopters to inspire others.
- Provide Training and Resources: Offer user training sessions, webinars, and tutorials to familiarise employees with Yammer’s features and functionality. Develop a repository of resources, including user guides, FAQs, and best practice documents, for ongoing support.
- Encourage Active Participation: Facilitate engaging discussions, encourage employees to share knowledge, and recognise contributions to create a vibrant Yammer community. Encourage managers to use Yammer for transparent communication and solicit feedback from their teams.
- Foster Yammer Champions: Identify enthusiastic Yammer users across various departments and designate them as champions. Empower them to drive adoption, answer questions, and share best practices within their teams.
Customisation and Advanced Features:
- Branding and Visual Customisation: Customize Yammer’s appearance to reflect your organisation’s branding, including logos, colours, and banners, for a cohesive and familiar user experience.
- External Network Collaboration: Enable external collaboration by setting up external networks or inviting external stakeholders, such as partners, vendors, or clients, to collaborate on specific projects or initiatives.
- Customised Integration: Leverage Yammer’s API and integration capabilities to develop custom integrations with other business applications, allowing seamless data sharing and streamlined workflows.
- Advanced Analytics and Insights: Utilise Yammer’s analytics tools to gain valuable insights into user engagement, trending topics, and community health. Monitor usage patterns and make data-driven decisions to further enhance adoption and usage.
Ensuring Governance and Security:
- Establish Governance Policies: Develop clear guidelines and policies regarding acceptable use, data privacy, and information sharing on Yammer. Ensure alignment with existing organisational policies and industry regulations.
- Monitor and Moderate Content: Implement a content moderation strategy to maintain a safe and productive environment. Assign moderators to review and moderate discussions, ensuring compliance with policies and addressing any inappropriate content or behaviour.
- Data Security and Compliance: Consider data security measures such as enabling multi-factor authentication, enforcing strong password policies, and implementing data encryption. Ensure compliance with relevant data protection regulations and industry standards.
Continuous Improvement and Measurement:
- Monitor Usage Metrics: Regularly track and analyse Yammer usage metrics to understand adoption rates, engagement levels, and community health. Identify trends, user feedback, and areas for improvement.
- Solicit Feedback and Iterate: Encourage employees to provide feedback on their Yammer experience. Actively listen to their suggestions, address concerns, and iterate on the platform to enhance user satisfaction and meet evolving needs.
- Celebrate Successes: Recognise and celebrate successful collaboration stories, positive outcomes, and contributions made through Yammer. Highlight these achievements to inspire further engagement and reinforce the value of the platform.
Implementing and customising Yammer requires careful planning, effective communication, and ongoing engagement. By following the steps outlined in this comprehensive guide, organisations can unlock the full potential of Yammer to transform internal communication, foster collaboration, and drive employee engagement. Remember, successful implementation and customisation of Yammer involve a combination of technical expertise, change management strategies, and a commitment to nurturing a thriving community of users. Embrace Yammer as a powerful tool to strengthen your organisation’s culture, productivity, and innovation in the ever-evolving world of work.