How to Complete a Communication App Audit

What to Consider When Completing a Communication App Audit

As we embark on a New Year, many of us are probably sitting down and strategizing on plans and budgets for the coming year. As part of your plan to invest strategically and grow your business, it’s a great idea to include a communication app audit.

Organizations should do this to determine whether or not the current technology aligns with business requirements and goals. Because tech solutions can get stale quick, it imperative to reflect on whether users are happy and getting the value they expect.

Why Are There So Many Apps?

Throughout 2017 and in fact over the last few years, there has been a shift towards more collaborative and conversational environments in the workplace. This has resulted in a plethora of new platforms and solutions available to help teams work better together. And this is only the beginning, according to IDC Analyst Wayne Kurtzman in this Wired Article. As more and more players come to market, how do organizations really determine what is the best fit for their specific use-case and their teams?

At Zinc, we focus on the underserved, yet large and growing deskless workforce. Zinc’s customers believe that real-time communication is the driving force that helps them reach their goals. While some solutions such as Slack, Microsoft Teams or Facebook Workplace offer real-time communication capabilities, they are designed for the desk-bound worker who primarily works on a computer in an office.

When deskless workers try to use these same tools, they end up getting frustrated because it is not built for their needs. As a result, communication stalls, or worse, they stop communicating at all. In some situations, they turn to consumer applications to fill the gap.

Key Requirements to Consider

For organizations with deskless workers, they need to consider key requirements to ensure that the solution they are using is secure, scalable, and adopted by both their field and desk-based teams. Beyond the fundamental communication modes of voice, video, text, location-sharing and group calling, other check-the-box items should include:

IT/Admin:

  • Easy provisioning
  • Insights and analytics
  • Privacy and security

Corporate:

  • Company-wide communication
  • Alerts and notifications
  • Information storage

Team:

  • Group conversations
  • External users
  • Texting, Calling, Video, Photo/File/Location sharing

Also, it’s important to make sure the platform is device agnostic, so conversations can be carried on seamlessly from one device to another.

Important Questions to Ask

When carrying out your communication app audit, examine your communication strategy more closely and find out how well your teams currently communicate with each other and their external counterparts.

Conduct a quick survey of the field and corporate teams: We suggest you ask questions like:

1. Are consumer apps being used? Whatsapp, Facebook Messenger, SMS, GChat, Wechat?

These are great for communicating with your friends and family, but they are not fit for the enterprise. For one, they lack security and privacy. Anyone can be added to a chat and files shared are not encrypted or secure. Second, it’s difficult to scale. There’s no way to provision users and control who has access to what. Finally, there is no way for management to track and analyze the tribal conversations that occur in the field.

2. Are you using point solutions for safety alerts, social selling, and employee advocacy?

Point solutions such as Social Chorus, Dynamic Signal or Chatter were designed to encourage employees to share news and help foster employee engagement, but other than that they don’t help with broad communication usage. Using a single-minded solution like this is not cost effective and can become tedious because your employees have to keep track of which tool to use for what type of communication. Often, as a result, they stop checking the apps completely.

3. Does your solution only work for part of the workforce?

Microsoft Teams, Skype for Business, Slack and Atlassian Stride are all great for collaboration—if you’re at a desk. However, if you have a workforce that is both desk-based and deskless, a large segment of your workforce gets completely cut out of the conversation. As a result, frontline and field-based employees feel disconnected and communication from office teammates, such as from the scheduling center, is incredibly inefficient.

Completing a communication app audit will help you identify inefficiencies and potential overspending. By streamlining this area of the business, you can reduce costs, increase productivity, and grow your business faster with an enterprise chat platform platform best-suited for your organization.

Want to learn more about completing an audit?  Watch our webinar recording on this topic.