We’re sure you’ve probably come across the term ‘silo effect’ before. But, what exactly does it mean and how does it impact business? In its most basic form, a silo mentality will prevent certain employees, teams, or departments from freely sharing information with others working at the same company.
Well, if you think this sounds concerning, you’re right. Working in silos can have serious consequences for business, as can failing to avoid the more common collaboration mistakes out there. Thankfully, there are ways in which technology can help break down the silo effect and get information flowing freely across your company.
Simply read on to learn more about how working in silos can affect business and how technology can help address any existing issues you may have.
How does the silo effect impact the workplace?
Before we get into just how great technology can be at fixing the silo effect, we need to explain how serious its impact can be on business. While isolated incidences of silo mentality may still occur even with a robust technological infrastructure in place, they will be hugely mitigated.
- Communication is limited and collaboration collapses
Any team or department working in a silo isn’t going to be communicating with one another. Unsurprisingly, you’ll probably find that the vast majority of your employees thrive when collaborating and this in turn fosters a healthy culture in the workplace. However, without simple and effective communication this won’t be the case, so productivity and morale will inevitably suffer.
- Work can be repeated unnecessarily
There is nothing more frustrating for a business than wasting valuable company resources. If your company has various silos that fail to communicate then you’ll likely see multiple instances of work being repeated unnecessarily. Again, this is detrimental to productivity.
- Information isn’t as freely available as it should be
When it comes to wasting valuable time, the silo effect is your number one enemy. Without a centralised network of information, you’ll find that your employees spend far too long looking for documents and persons of interest when they could be doing more important things.
How can technology help to break down silo mentality?
Generally, whenever there is a problem, there is a solution to said problem. In the case of silo mentality taking hold across your workforce, you need to look to technology as your saviour. So, read our top 5 tips on how technology can break down the silo effect at your workplace.
- Improved data management, sharing, and storage
Technology can have a hugely positive impact when it comes to sharing and storing company data, documents, and files. This is vital if you wish to streamline the way that your employees access the information they need when they need it.
- Real-time communication tools
Communication plays a crucial role in reducing the silo mentality at your workplace. Advancements in technology now mean that different employees, teams, and departments can communicate in real time from any location. Thankfully, there are all kinds of real-time communication tools available to your business, such as instant messaging, voice calls, video conferencing, and much more.
- Boost collaboration across teams and departments
Our first two points highlight how technology makes communication and information access simpler. But, when both of these are combined, they do wonders for collaborative efforts at your workplace. Local and remote teams can now work on projects in unison, while managerial duties become far easier to fulfil.
- Track performance and offer incentives
Tracking performance and offering incentives enables businesses to reward hard work and dedication. But, there’s a catch here, not that it’s negative in any way though. By offering incentives, employees will go the extra mile in order to fulfil the requirements of the incentive program. By intertwining incentives with collaboration, you can help your teams break through the silo effect and perform more successfully as a unit.
- Offer further training programs through HR portals
IT departments can often suffer from silo mentality as their training typically focuses on more technical and specialised aspects of their work. Putting a training program in place can help your IT staff communicate far more effectively and this in turn helps other employees across your business. However, IT departments aren’t the only culprits and your training programs should offer similar communications training for everyone at your workplace.
Do you want to find out a little more about how you can deal with the silo effect at your workplace? Contact us now or alternatively, take a look at our IT Managed Services page to learn more about the technological options available to your business.