An Employee-Centric Digital Workplace?
Technology has been the backbone of business for years. It enables us to do so much; connect, communicate and collaborate. It helps us to do all manner of things; save time, become more productive and capture data. With technology, we can become more automated, more in tune with our customers, stakeholders and suppliers. Over the past few decades, the focus for many businesses has been on using technology to create a seamless customer experience. The customer is king, after all.
But what about the employee experience?When there’s so much emphasis on the customer and end-user, are your own employees missing out? Has their experience become less important? If there’s one thing that we’ve all had to do over the past few months is to adapt and adapt quickly. All of a sudden, businesses around the globe have had to operate from living rooms, dining rooms and spare bedrooms. All of a sudden, our reliance on technology has increased tenfold and the digital experience has become one of the most important aspects of the employee experience. We’ve become heavily reliant on communication tools that can keep us connected. Not only to operate from a ‘business as usual’ perspective but to keep colleagues connected, motivated and supported during this pandemic. A pandemic that has forced us to react to a situation that no-one could have foreseen or planned or prepared for. Some may see it as some kind of greater power at work, fast-tracking new processes and ways of working that may have taken years to implement if it all. The way in which we work has been evolving for years, with an increase in freelance, remote and gig-economy workers. Those who have often felt disconnected; not only from their colleagues but from the overall mission of the brands they represent. Communicating company values and creating a healthy work culture is as relevant today as they ever have been, so businesses cannot afford to overlook those employees who aren’t physically in the office. Those who may be working remotely but still performing to the highest of standards and putting all their energy and expertise into the work they produce. The world has changed in an instant and we’ve all had to learn how to diversify. Technology has helped to support that, but more can be done to continue to improve the employee experience. Technology can radically alter the workforce as we know it. Technology can be used to drive change internally as well as externally.
Technology allows you to meet your people where they are. It keeps employees engaged, connected and supported. It allows everyone to work towards one mission. To reach goals and milestones that once-upon-a-time could only be reached in the traditional office environment. The way in which we work has been slowly changing over the years but has only been fully embraced by a small percentage of early adopters who can see, and believe the bigger picture. Those with a belief that business can actually improve if employees are enabled to work in a way that works for them. The traditional 9–5 no longer serves us as human beings. Life isn’t that linear any more. Individuals have their own hopes, dreams and aspirations. They’re inspired to do more and be more and the workplace needs to nurture that. Employee empowerment is key to long-term success and sustainability. Driving successful change in your organisation needs to be facilitated from those at the top, but it needs to be driven by those who keep the wheels and the cogs turning. Successful change needs to be collaborative. Ensuring that everyone has a voice that’s heard, understood and where possible, implemented, to create a culture that you can be proud of. According to The World Economic Forum’s ‘The Future of Jobs Report’, 85% of businesses are expanding into new technology, including:
- Cloud-based technology
- Artificial Intelligence
- Big data analytics