Traditionally, mentoring happened in 1-to-1, in-person settings. And while some of that is returning, statistics show that remote work is here to stay, at least to some degree. In fact, a 2021 Gallup study found 91% of workers who are working from home at least part-time hope to see that flexibility persist into the future. For mentoring to continue to be authentic in 2022 and beyond, it’ll require companies to support their efforts using virtual mentoring portals that connect mentors and mentees as easily as (or even more fluidly) than in the before times.
A well-built mentoring portal will be available in multiple formats, such as desktop browsers and mobile apps. These interfaces will allow participants to connect, set goals, track milestones and time, access learning resources, and more. Functionally, a mentoring portal should be the one-stop access point for the entire mentoring relationship.
When Would I Use a Mentoring Portal?
Mentoring portals are infinitely useful the moment you decide to have a mentoring program for a large and growing number of team members. Among the biggest reasons is to reduce the burden/strain placed on program administrators. Smart matching algorithms alone will save hours of time investment, while the ability for mentors and mentees to connect seamlessly without administrators setting up engagements has almost limitless value to you and your organization.
Digging in deeper, however, if you can answer “Yes” to any of the following questions, virtual mentoring tools are likely something you need:
If you found yourself agreeing to one or more of these questions, mentoring software is probably something your organization needs sooner rather than later.
Only Use Secure Mentoring Portals
Your mentoring tool is only as good as the security it offers your organization. Introducing third-party software into the mix may make your IT team squirm a bit, but it will ultimately be essential to effectively connect and measure the success of your mentoring programs (.e.g, the return on investment, or ROI).
Integrating third-party software is quite often essential for business. But adopting this software often gets held up by IT until all of their questions are answered. Make sure that the software you choose easily answers the questions your IT team is likely to have so that you don’t slow down the implementation process.
Looking for more about Virtual Mentoring Portals? Check out the FAQ below:
What Is a Virtual Mentoring Portal (VMP?)
A virtual mentoring portal is a tool that allows mentors and mentees to connect from any location. Mentoring portals maximize functionality to help replace most or all of the aspects of traditional mentoring programs, including matching, program management, communication, and learning.
MentorcliQ’s virtual mentoring tools allow organizations to create, manage, scale, and measure the success of mentorship programs and relationships.
Do Mentoring Portals Offer Training
Mentoring portals should have training modules available for mentors and mentees to learn from. If the software does not provide learning material for your participants, it should at least allow your administrators to upload training documents relevant to the programs your mentors and mentees are engaged in. For example, organizations that use MentorcliQ’s mentoring portal and software will find hours of content available through software features such as MentorLab and MentorFlix.
How Do You Mentor in COVID?
You’re not alone in wondering about this challenge. Mentoring during the COVID-19 pandemic has been exceptionally challenging for many people. That’s why virtual mentoring portals exist, and why so many organizations are using them. The benefit of virtual mentoring is that it allows mentors and mentees to connect remotely. Even as the pandemic ends, mentoring virtually will remain important as over half of all workers want to remain remote full-time or with a hybrid schedule.
Check out our action guide on how to help mentoring partners who feel uneasy about the return to work.
Ready to get started with virtual mentoring? Book a demo and download our 2022 Workforce Survival Guide for actionable insight into how to use mentoring portals to thrive in a post-pandemic work environment.