What Emoji Use at Work Can Tell Us About Team Dynamics

A new big info investigate task uncovered that emoji use at do the job varies significantly based on the user’s purpose, organization and conversational problem.

Emojis have occur a prolonged way since their introduction in 1998. In reality, in 2020 the Unicode Consortium formally included 117 new emojis bringing the full quantity of approved emojis to 3,304. Emojis (also recognised as emoticons, digital icons) have develop into a considerable element of organization communications many thanks to fast chat companies like Slack, Skype and Groups, yet their usage in the place of work has not been rigorously researched.

Image: Rawf8 - stock.adobe.com

Picture: Rawf8 – stock.adobe.com

My group and I recently worked on a task to anonymously analyze how leaders use emojis while communicating with their group members at do the job. We parsed anonymized emoji reactions from Slack messages at 4 distinct enterprises above a one hundred eighty-day period in 2020. The full info set bundled above eighty three,000 messages with above one zero one,000 emojis of 466 distinct sorts (customized Slack emojis were excluded). Our group also extracted metadata on the messages the emoji were responding to and the sentiment of the emoji by themselves. This gave us the unique ability to not only glance at summary distributions of emoji usage, but to also analyze the utility of emojis in directing discussion.

It’s truly worth noting that (shockingly) there was incredibly very little change in the info from Q1 2020 to Q2 2020, so the improve in distant do the job many thanks to the coronavirus pandemic did not show up to have a considerable effects on emoji usage.

Now on to some of the important conclusions:

Do men and women adhere to using the similar set of emoji? In brief, of course, they do. one.two% of end users employed less than ten emojis in the final one hundred eighty days and 50.seven% of end users employed less than 5 emojis in that time. It’s not very clear from our info if this is thanks to private choice, or if the “Frequently Used” and “Handy Reactions” menus in Slack encourages men and women to adhere to the similar set (very likely some of the two).

Do men and women use particular sorts of emoji in reaction to particular sorts of messages? There are considerable discrepancies in emoji usage based on the intent of the message that the emoji is used to. We calculated the big difference in between the worldwide usage amount for each emoji, and the usage fees of that emoji in reaction to messages of a particular intent (we’ve wonderful-tuned BERT to classify messages into a quantity of conversational intents, such as “supplying praise”, “scheduling a assembly”, “requesting information and facts”, etcetera.).

For illustration, an ad-hoc scheduling request will get the Thumbs Up emoji 16% extra typically than general posts will (they are also very likely to get the Coffee Cup). Posts that give recognition get Clapping Hands six% extra and the Noisemaker 4% extra. Posts that advise that do the job has been accomplished get Thumbs Up fifteen% extra (and are also extra very likely to get the Rocket Ship) and posts that categorical doubt also get the Thumbs Up 9% extra.

Do managers and workforce use emojis uniquely? The top rated 5 emojis employed by managers are totally distinct than the top rated 5 employed by their group members. In general, manager emojis are inclined to present positivity and appreciation (like the Clapping Hands and the Noisemaker) and group member emojis are inclined to present acknowledgement (like Checkmark and Eyes). Our group is delighted to see so several good and encouraging emojis employed routinely by managers!

Do distinct organizations use emojis in a different way? Our group uncovered overlap in how distinct organizations employed Slack emojis, but also considerable discrepancies. Providers do seem to be to acquire their own very similar but distinct emoji “vernacular.” This could be brought on by a selection of features like organization culture, discrepancies in group constructions, etcetera.

In spite of all these discrepancies, which emoji built the leaderboard all round? The most usually employed emojis all round were (in order of usage) Thumbs Up at 30%, Heart at 8%, Laughing Facial area at six%, Hearth at five%, and the Noisemaker at 4%. As you can see, Thumbs Up is the most well-liked by a large margin and all of the top rated 5 emojis have a good sentiment. Negative emojis are not employed typically.

All in all, emoji use is extra custom made that you could assume and is dependent on an individual’s organization and situation. Upcoming time you consist of an emoji in your chat provider of option, take into account why you selected that certain a single — it just could assist boost your digital communications with your group.

Andy Horng is Co-Founder and Head of AI at digital leadership platform Cultivate. He has a history in info science and has worked as a software engineer making machine finding out instruments for authorized doc investigation and healthcare investigate. He retains a BS in Electrical Engineering/Pc Science and a BA in Cognitive Science, the two from the College of California Berkeley.


The InformationWeek neighborhood delivers with each other IT practitioners and industry gurus with IT tips, training, and viewpoints. We try to highlight technologies executives and topic make a difference gurus and use their knowledge and encounters to assist our audience of IT … View Whole Bio

We welcome your feedback on this subject matter on our social media channels, or [call us right] with issues about the web site.

Additional Insights

Maria J. Danford

Next Post

How to Get Automation Right

Tue Sep 8 , 2020
Enterprises are automating far more jobs and processes many thanks to AI and equipment mastering, but they are finding distinct outcomes mainly because some did not believe it by means of initially. Image: Andranik – stock.adobe.com The race is on to automate rote, repetitive jobs mainly because organizational effectiveness is […]

You May Like