Posted on March 17, 2020
Estimated reading time 4 minutes
Frustrated employees that don’t have the appropriate tools to do their job…
Disconnected processes and systems that require huge manual or duplicated effort, or force teams and data into silos…
IT teams that are constrained by legacy technology and spend most of their time fixing faults, patching servers and responding to users’ cries for help… Break-fix service providers that don’t drive the strategic objectives of the business.
This is the reality of many modern businesses, which means they’re forced to fight for survival, rather than set up for success. Fail to change and upgrade your business to the latest model, and you won’t have the internal capability to improve your customer experience, grow revenue and increase profits, or have the ability to analyse and act on your data.
3 things that drive a modern workplace
Thinking about reinventing your entire organisation for the digital era is understandably a bit overwhelming, so we’ve highlighted the top 3 trends you need to start with:
1. Mobile first
According to one report from Buffer, 99% of today’s modern workforce want to work remotely at least some of the time for the rest of their careers. Fail to meet this demand and you’re going to lose out on the top talent.
But while 65% of companies currently offer remote working, only 35% of employees say they’re able to complete all their tasks away from the office, which is probably why 6% of employees who can work from home, actually do.
Mobile first isn’t about giving your employees smart phones. It’s not about setting up a cumbersome VPN. And it’s not about enabling virtualisation within your IT infrastructure. No. Mobile first is about a mindset – everything you provide within your organisation needs to be delivered as if there were no office / desktops. With a mobile first strategy in place, your employees have an identical, seamless experience wherever they are and whenever they need to work.
But mobile first is about more than access…
Research shows that when employees are allowed to work from home, they are actually more productive. And when asked about job satisfaction, 80% of remote workers say they are happy with their job, compared to just 55% of on-site workers. So not only is mobile first good for business, it’s important for employee morale and wellbeing.
Employees sit in twice as many teams as they did 5 years ago. Now consider how remote working is on the rise – and it’s not just employees working from home or on client site. Today, teams can span the globe and yet still need to work together in order to get a job done. Plus, the freelance economy is booming as organisations look to hire in specialists to supplement their in-house skills on specific tasks.
It’s led to the rise of collaboration within the workplace, where these teams need to come together and work together in the most productive way possible.
Research shows that companies promoting collaborative working are 5x more likely to be high performing, with team members sticking at their task 64% longer than their solitary peers. And again, it’s good for employee morale – 33% of employees say the ability to collaborate makes them more loyal.
As members of the younger generations continue to step into the workforce, they bring new expectations around teamwork, having grown up surrounded by technology. And yet organisations aren’t really living up to those expectations – 62% of employees feel their workplace is behind the times when it comes to keeping up with the latest communication technology trends. And 86% of employees and executives cite a lack of collaboration or ineffective communication for workplace failures.
3. Work-life balance
The vast majority (85%) of remote workers made the decision to work from home because they wanted more flexibility, to make their own hours, and to live a carefree lifestyle. When you consider that a CIPD report found that employees today are expected to work longer hours than ever before, with a quarter of employees stating their job affects their personal commitments and a fifth saying they always felt exhausted at work, you can appreciate the lure of working from home.
Without the daily commute, employees can claw those precious hours back to enjoy more sleep or indulge in their favourite leisure activity, without it affecting their work.
When it comes to flexible working, women are more likely than men to have moved away from the traditional 9-5, suggesting that childcare has a huge part to play in the work-life balance.
Data from the Office for National Statistics shows that 75% mothers with dependent children are in work, compared to 93% of fathers, and that the rate of mothers in employment has actually overtaken the employment rates of women without dependent children.
Embrace the modern workplace
Over three-quarters (78%) of business leaders believe the modernisation of their business is very important to their company’s overall performance.
Creating this modern workplace requires you to provide your employees with digital workplaces so they can collaborate in real-time from anywhere in the world – including collaborating with people outside your organisation, such as partners and freelancers. The modern workplace also requires you to adopt technology that enables your teams to work better together and takes care of routine tasks, allowing your talented people to focus on delivering innovation and creativity to your customers.
But while the majority of business leaders understand the importance of the modern workplace, nearly a quarter of companies are not set up for success; when asked how prepared they were for digital transformation, 21% replied “not very” and 3% said “not at all“.
Your route to success
When these critical success factors are in place, companies are 3x more likely to succeed in creating a modern workplace:
- People: senior managers ensure greater collaboration between units.
- Process: standard operating procedures include new digital technologies.
- Technology: digital tools make information more accessible across the organisation.
At Atech, we specialise in helping our clients to create agile environments that allow their teams to work more productively and respond quickly to the changing market conditions. We do this through supporting your ambition, and managing expectations around what’s possible and what’s best for your organisation. But perhaps most importantly, we do this by embedding the new ways of working into your company’s DNA, to establish business-as-usual.