Last year the nature of work changed drastically. It was a real test of the readiness of businesses to transition to and benefit from remote working and a digital workplace.
In many cases, entire workforces transitioned overnight to remote working whilst all customer engagements shifted online or to virtual experiences. Many of the remote working measures and solutions implemented last year were “quick fixes” such as video meetings to keep organisations operating ready for the great “V” shaped recovery. Then the “V” shape recovery became “U” shaped. 1 year on and we are still working remotely with many digital workplace environments being quite primitive, limited and limiting.
What is a Digital Workplace?
A digital workplace is a generic term used to refer to virtual workplaces or suite of digital tools that allows workforces to work from anywhere. It can take many forms and will vary in nature by organisation based on what they require to work from anywhere.
At a basic level, a digital workplace can be cloud-based application for virtual meetings such as Microsoft Teams or Zoom – something that has become hugely popular over the last year.
By June 2020, over 145 Million users worldwide were using Microsoft Teams
Just as everyday work is more than a meeting, a digital workplace is a lot more than just Microsoft Teams or Zoom meeting. It can also be a complete digital workspace such as Microsoft 365 or a suite of tools to transform all aspects of working – including creating, managing, scheduling, communicating, sharing and collaborating between individuals, teams and across organisational silos as well as externally with customers.
The full scope of a digital workplace also extends beyond digital workspaces into the digitisation and automation of operational tasks or even end to end processes – such as Requirements gathering to delivery & customer support, Quote to Cash or Source to Pay, etc.
There are 10 key benefits of a digital workplace or operation. The end goal is not to be digital, it is about creating engaged and effective workforces and transforming operations to ultimately achieve new performances and business possibilities.
The transformation journey doesn’t have to be a complicated nor disruptive to internal operations. It can be phased and even a light touch transition if approached correctly.
How to plan and create your Digital workplace
If you are struggling with the limitations of a traditional workplace listed here, it can be difficult to know where to start your transformation. Ultimately there isn’t one right digital workplace for everyone. What can be a step too far for one organisation can be a step backwards for another.
An important starting point is to understand and plan your digital workplace requirements based on your business needs and your existing state across People, Process and Technology. Formal Discovery Assessments and consultations such as those here can help you create your vision & plan for a digital operation and workforce as well as capture quick-win opportunities.
We feel there are 7 major areas or steps that businesses should consider when creating a digital workplace. A natural starting point is a digital workspace such as Microsoft 365, to connect employees, customers from everywhere as well as stimulate productivity, engagement, and collaboration.