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Birth of the future digital workplace

Kevin Wo, Senior Vice President and General Manager, ASEAN, Avanade | Sept. 17, 2015
How to improve productivity and competitive advantage in a hyper-connected world.

How companies are embracing a digital workplace
When it comes to the digital workplace journey, companies are building their digital future step-by-step, with most having at least one of the building blocks for a digital workplace already in place or a plan to invest in the next 12 to 24 months. To progress their transformation to a digital workplace, companies are looking to invest in connectivity solutions, data and analytics tools, social collaboration, business insights and information, and IT infrastructure.

Technologies such as Windows 10 and HoloLens are examples of the user-friendly tools that will help to drive employee engagement and collaboration in a digital workplace. Functionality like options for a more personal computing experience, access to universal apps across all Windows 10 devices, and the integration of Cortana on the PC will allow organisations to be more collaborative and 'always on.'

Don't be left behind
The pace of technology innovation is accelerating, so focus and agility are key. From our experience working with clients across industries, here are three tips for transforming to a digital workplace:

  1. Implement a digital strategy: Before considering technology implications, alignment with corporate objectives is a critical first step in developing a digital strategy. This requires sponsorship from the Board and/or CEO (not the CIO or CMO) for a clear business case and timings for the enterprise digital strategy. Adoption of digital workplace tools can then be prioritised effectively.

  2. Embrace collaboration: User experience drives collaboration behaviours. Bring together user-friendly social, mobile, analytics and cloud computing technologies to create a digital workplace that senses and responds to the information needs of employees – anytime, anywhere, and on any device.

  3. Up-skill for digital: Demand for digital skills will continue to outpace supply, so now is the time to start thinking about how to enable the blended workforce. People who can collaborate effectively across functions will be highly valued in the digital workplace, but we can also expect roles in areas like security and identity management to become more prevalent.

In order to realise productivity results, organisations must focus on using digital workplace technologies to create an intelligent context centred on individuals — effectively tailoring business processes and work to the context of each employee's industry, role, location, and tasks. Avanade's research found that only 44 percent of companies have so far adopted digital workplace tools, so taking steps now to create an intelligent context for your employees will give your organisation a significant market advantage in the emerging digital economy.

 

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