The traditional ‘generate and share’ information approach nowadays no longer meets employees’ evolving needs. Since it’s all about customers these days, a good customer experience requires a good employee experience in the form of a digital workplace, says Gartner analyst Carol Rozwell.
Steve Job once said – “It’s not the tools you have faith in. Tools are just tools — they work or they don’t work. It’s the people you have faith in or not.”
With the advent of digital transformation in the workplace, organizations have seen the peak of achievements in all segments. A study from Avanade has concluded that a true digital workplace achieves:
- Increased productivity—67%
- Employee engagement—53%
- Revenue growth—43%
The implementation of an entirely new working environment i.e. a digital workplace has become the necessity of time. An established digital workforce means leveraging the digital technologies with employees who have access to tools such as e-mail, instant messaging and enterprise social media tools, digital HR tools, virtual meeting tools etc.
Let’s Understand the Basic 8 Steps to Empower Employees with a Digital Workplace.
1. Share a Vision
It’s important that the digital workplace plan in any organisation is aligned with business and digital transformation goals. A vision well-planned curates zero confusion among employees and increase employee engagement and productivity eventually.
While planning to provide digital workplace to employees, it’s necessary to work closely with stakeholders, business management, and HR and facilities managers. They support in shaping the final plan and execute digital changes in the organisation keeping in mind the workplace demographics and potential impact of applied changes.
Business owners must understand that any kind of digital change can impact workforce productivity, so they are required to take the employers into confidence first. It is essential that before you form a partnership with mobile or web application development company to build an enterprise application that supports your digital vision.
2. Create a Strategy
The next step calls for creating a strategy to establish a roadmap and chalk out a blueprint that coordinates with digital workplace initiatives across R&D, marketing, sales, customer support, manufacturing, HR and IT. A well-planned strategy would keep challenges at bay while implementing the digital workforce and enable employees to accept the change easily.
To set your strategy right at every level, you must be aware of the market challenges and what it takes to create a digital workplace. For example, if you want to hire a tech partner to create a digital ecosystem within your organization, you should be knowing what are the common mistakes companies make while hiring a technology team. This type of knowledge helps you prevent making the same mistakes and keep you on the track.
3. Keep Tab with Metrics
Once the strategy is created, how will one ensure that it’s planned as per the situation and yield accurate results? This is why analytics is brought into the picture. Analytics supports in calculating the effects of digital transformation in IT, HR and business metrics by creating and managing a digital scorecard.
“For example, you can easily track the shift of timesheet entry from the web to mobile with analytics. Once data is calculated and a sheet is prepared of ‘To-be vs. As-is’, the difference alone would generate the answer to the digital transformation and adaptability by employees of the organisation.”
4. Enhance Employee Experience
In order to improve customer service, it’s necessary to enhance the employee experience in the organisation. It’s an employee who has a direct or indirect impact on customer satisfaction. Thus, ensuring that digital transformation is bringing benefits to employees would increase the success rate of improved customer satisfaction too.
For instance – Business can create an online portal where top management can recognize an employee contribution, success and incorporate it into a shared IT/HR metric to monitor employee engagement.
5. Promote Organizational Change
Transformation to a digital workplace requires a change in the internal processes, departmental structures, incentives, skills, culture and behaviours. Only organisation alone could not promote and implement the change, it has to encourage change within the system, and among the employees.
It has become a mandate to encourage new skills and competencies for employees that are an absolute need for the digital workplace and eventually develop a plan to train or hire personnel who possess them.
These days, many industries are relying on mobile applications powered by emerging technologies like AI, IoT, and Blockchain to streamline their business processes and deliver a better solution. For example, the healthcare industry has created an ecosystem of connected healthcare to tackle the challenges and reduce cost and deliver better services.
6. Re-create Processes
While going through the transformation, it’s mostly seen that organisations go through re-engineering the business processes instead of creating new altogether. The process demands a comparison of employees’ way of working and spending time on activities that the employee is most comfortable with.
To empower employees with digital transformation, organisations look forward to trending technologies like the Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning etc.
7. Share Insightful Information
While planning the ending of transformation, it’s important to share the information with employees. Employees usually look forward to expecting ideas that are smart in nature and useful in their personal lives. They expect all the factual information, data and analytics to be readily available and delivered as and when needed.
For instance, to maintain and regulate a healthy flow of information, organisations have moved to the power of enabling files through mobile devices. It ensures real-time synchronization of data with employees thus eradicating the challenges on the way acquiring the information.
8. Robust Technology
In the end, robust technology is needed to bring together and manage all of the digital platforms in a seamless web of relative awareness. Powered with such mobility benefits and real-time information delivery, employees are empowered with digitization that enables them to serve customers in a rightful manner.
The business environment today is totally the opposite of what we had seen in previous old times. Gone are the days of manual labour and hard toil word. The environment today is interconnected with instant access to multiple sections. This enhancement has uplifted the environment between the physical office and the place where actual work happens.
Having integrated such advancement, the digital workplace breaks down communication barriers, let employees position themselves to transform their experience by fostering efficiency, innovation and growth.