Thanks to the mobile revolution call that boosted texting, and social media, most of us have the attention span of a few minutes. This brings many challenges to the office, the most important being the fact people don’t read long documents anymore.
Unless consuming long, often boring, documents is a necessity for the job at hand, people will abstain from doing so. Yes, your lawyers, accountants and security officers will consume and apply that new regulation. At the same time, they may put off reading new internal documentation, such as quality manuals, security policies and handbooks, until they actually need its content. And thereby missing important new information or procedures. And when they finally need it, they will bother others for the details of (the location of) said new information. Losing time and money in the process.
Luckily there are easier ways to do this. We have a solution to this problem and found a way to please all parties in this process, creators and consumers/readers. The solution lies in an easy way to navigate information, chunk sizing information into easily absorbable bits, and have a pleasant way to consume the information.
Documents can be cut up in chunks, by paragraph or chapter and loaded into Entree, SharePoint or another document system. Each part can be tagged so that the individual items can be found and consumed very easily. Rather than adding one large document. Here is an example of adding a large document to Entree in line with this principle. We add an employee handbook, with special keynotes per paragraph. Now if you look for something specific, such as ‘how do I report sickness’, ‘what is the company code of conduct’, you will be led directly to the respective paragraph instead of presenting you the entire document to go through looking for your answer.
This also makes it much easier to find specific information buried in large quality manuals and handbooks. It changes the way people find and consume information and everybody can be happy again!
Remember the intro about our short attention spans? Luckily the reality is better than our first assumption. It turns out, it is an assumption that is not yet supported by real scientific research. Read all about the state of our attention span in this pleasant BBC article.
Written by meetroo’s Chief MC Maarten Visser. With iworkhappy.com we share small hacks that will require little effort, but will help you tackle work challenges, increase productivity and make better use of office 365. This to help you reduce workload, take away the noise and help you do more with your time, and thereby create a setting where your work happiness increases.