Tag: digital workplace

How a Digital Workplace Empowers Employees and Trends to Watch For

Posted by on April 25, 2018

working-on-tablet

You could say that the digital working place began with telephones, intercoms, and voice recording gadgets. The benefits were in speed of communications, efficiency and lightening the labor load for the people in the organization. As office computer technology revolutionized process, the digital workplace is, in turn, revolutionizing office technology.

Many revolutions began and strengthened when people “voted with their feet” and abandoned repressive, archaic systems. The digital workplace has a component of that, because we are in an age where employees have walked away from the confines of the workplace.

So, many people want the convenience of working outside the brick-and-mortar traditional workplace, while at the same time maintaining the social and professional interaction, which makes us human.

This article describes the components and benefits of the digital working place, its challenges, and how a modern social intranet addresses those challenges.

Components of the digital workplace

The digital workplace puts the employee first and meets the following needs:

  • A seamless experience across employees’ personal devices as well as company owned
  • The avoidance of  IT configuration hassles
  • A secure divide between their personal and work-related data and to know that “Big Brother” is not watching
  • Availability of favorite new and legacy computer applications when needed without concern on how the applications get to the end-user

Challenges in adopting a digital workplace

The challenges in adopting the digital workplace, though by no means insurmountable, are inherent in its 3 key drivers:

1. The cloud:  The digital workplace cannot—excuse the pun—get off the ground without cloud-based technology. The cloud brings a new set of challenges and a decision process centered around myriad issues of security and effects on customers, to name just two. Complete adoption of a digital workplace plan must include cloud strategies that range from total cloud to a hybrid approach.

2. Mobile access: The digital workplace is connected through the tools employees use, and those tools must adhere to what managers need most: an easier way for employees to do what managers want them to do without shadow-IT workarounds. This challenge also brings up issues of device management as well as how everything works across the computer keyboard or smartphone spectrum.

3. A consensus on apps: Business apps today comprise a veritable embarrassment of riches, without the previous shrink-wrapped exorbitant costs. Employees head for the dark side of shadow-IT because doing so makes their job easier. Assessing and adapting to those workarounds are a great way to build a stronger foundation for the digital workplace.

How does the digital workplace empower employees?

The simple answer is that the digital workplace gives employees secure, unfettered, and remote access to what they need to do their job. The complicated answer focuses on the modern integrated IT solution: The digital workplace relies on strict policies, identity management, the cloud, and mobile technologies. Remote access must be secure but enable users to move across devices and from different locations. Digital workplaces can fuel business transformation.

Here are 3 examples of how enterprises can benefit from their digital workplace:

1. Financial services can improve customer service and bank operations. Financial counselors can gain secure access on tablet applications to the data they need. IT teams can remotely manage branch ATMs.

2. Retail organizations can better manage customer engagement. Employees and associates have timely product and inventory information at their fingertips. They can serve a customer from anywhere in the store via secure smartphone or company device.

3. Healthcare organizations can improve patient outcomes. Caregivers can gain access to secure patient information. They can view X-rays and patient health charts from any location, regardless of devices.

What’s ahead in 2018

Writing for CMSWire, David Roe points out that “the digital workplace conversation has made it clear we are talking about more than just a collection of technologies or apps designed to collectively improve productivity in organizations.” What digitization means in the workplace is that it is an ongoing process “with a great deal yet to be done.”

Roe describes some common digital workplace themes, which took shape in 2017 and will likely grow in prominence over the next 12 months. Highlights:

Hackers will be more active than ever

Cybersecurity threats will be compounded by the growth of remote workers and connected devices. Roe predicts 2018 “will see a spike in sophisticated cyber attacks” with a variety of unusual breaching vectors.

Workers will want the best digital tools

Technology restraints and limitations in workplace apps “could be deal-breakers when it comes to hiring and retaining staff.” Organizations will need to overcome problems of inaccessible or poor enterprise software usability. They will need to overcome the lack of integration or collaboration offered in their legacy or existing digital workplace tools.

Artificial intelligence will continue to rule

AI will continue to be invisible but pervasive. Beyond 2018, the author cites one technology guru as predicting that AI will become so fully integrated in our workplace lives “that the boundary between artificial intelligence and human intelligence will become indistinguishable.”

The Cloud will be more prominent

Workers will become ever more dependent on cloud storage. The advantages are quick information access as well as better security control. Workers need real-time data and reports for insight. They do not want to wait for a manager or the IT to produce that data.

Likewise, the cloud now minimizes security risks inherent in laptop or desktop computers. Cloud app providers “will build more native logging and audit features to help security professionals monitor and control user activity at the source.” That approach frees administrators to enforce local protocols, rather than using third-party tools.

A different paradigm of information collaboration

A workforce dominated by millennials is “on the horizon.” The internet and the resulting mobility are enabling a new paradigm. As video calling is becoming the norm for millennial customers, “video conferencing will become ubiquitous in business.”

Roe predicts that video conferencing will bridge the gap between remote teams, vendors and customers “creating stronger bonds between stakeholders.”

How the modern social intranet addresses those challenges

As discussed above, a digital workplace is about empowering the workforce to be more efficient and productive where they are. Today’s workforce is increasingly more mobile and global and no longer confined to a typical in-office workday. Employees crave the ability to work from anywhere.

A modern social intranet solution is the key part of the digital workplace strategy. It provides a means to maximize the value of employees and engage them through a virtual workspace. By connecting everyone in the organization through a single destination, a social intranet provides all the tools employees need to do their job. It also provides a platform for communication, knowledge flow and engagement.

Join us at the Digital Workplace Experience Conference in Chicago, June 18-20

Rivet Logic will partner with Liferay to showcase a collaborative digital workplace solution from June 18-20, 2018, at the Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel in Chicago. The event will highlight the following Digital Workplace Experience Tracks:

  • Leadership, Strategy and Digital Workplace Culture
  • Employee Experience Practices
  • Digital Workplace Platforms
  • The Intelligent Workplace
  • Digital Experience Measurement and Optimization