Why A Digital Workplace Strategy Will Revolutionise Your Workplace
In insight / By Mark Flynn / 22 May 2018
Firstly, it’s important to know what a digital workspace is. Simply put, it’s the merging of smartphones and tablets with collaboration tools such as Office 365.
Tip: check out the rich set of collaboration tools that comes with Office 365 especially Microsoft Office 365 Teams and move your file system to OneDrive for Business and SharePoint and watch your mobile and geographically spread organisation pull together as one.
As business leaders, your number one job in life is finding the rock stars and leadership talent to drive your business forward. Unfortunately, your talent will start walking out the door if you continue to give them clunky, unreliable, last generation productivity tools.
As businesses become increasingly more mobile and global, consumer technology is setting everyone's expectations. If I can easily stream live sport, music, and films from a smartphone and download any number of collaboration tools instantly, why should I put up with the frustrating technology my business provides.
For example, for many of my customers, the Skype smartphone app is resulting in employees using traditional phones less as they work from home or take part in voice or video conference calls in the field between customer meetings.
So if you start to find that key people are walking or your new international office is not delivering ask yourself if you need a digital workplace strategy.
Importantly from your employee’s perspective, if you get it right, virtual working will allow people to blend their personal needs and professional obligations which will enable you to attract and retain highly productive and motivated people. In my opinion, it offers a no-brainer slam dunk ROI (Return On Investment), for example:
Lower salaries - employees will take a salary sacrifice to stop the daily commuting grind and to achieve a better work-life balance
Reduced real estate costs - less office-bound people means less expensive commercial office space
Reduced recruitment costs - companies that invest in remote working have a higher staff retention rate
Beat that for a compelling business case for moving to a digital workplace strategy!
Something that very few consider when looking to create a digital workspace is 'what will happen to your workplace etiquette'. With members of teams communicating more and more from separate locations, how we communicate with each other online is becoming increasingly important. The first and most important thing to consider is, would you say it if you were both in a brick and mortar office? If not, then don’t say it online as the evidence will stay there for all to see. Secondly, always consider tone as face to face communications can convey a thousand small meanings but online you’ve only got the words on the page, so you lose the tone and so it’s important to re-read what you write to make sure it will come across the way you want it to.
The final but perhaps most important thing to consider when talking about the digital workspace is cybersecurity. The simple fact is that implementing a digital workspace creates vulnerabilities as users connect to business systems using smartphones and tablets over an open coffee shop and hotel wi-fi networks.
This will require the adoption of a different security model, one based on not trusting anyone or anything connecting from inside or outside your organisation.
This model is commonly known as the Zero Trust security model which builds on top of your traditional investments in firewalls and AV using multi-factor authentication to make sure they are who they say they are and looking for anomalies in what they are doing.
If you would like to discuss anything you have read in this article, please get in touch.