By Lalithanand Moses S, Senior Director – Global EndPoint & Seamless Collaboration Services| End User Experience | Digital Workplace Solutions at Unisys
Digital transformation was put on steroids when the pandemic hit the world compelling organizations to digitally transform at an accelerated pace. This happened in an environment where business leaders relied on IT executives to do whatever it took to keep their companies running. The IT leaders who effectively established true digital workplaces before the pandemic found it much easier to help thousands of employees work from remote locations safely and flexibly. In a way, IT leaders who accomplished this agility became heroes in the eyes of the rest of the C-suite. Two years on, digital workplace technology is making it possible for organizations to create productive hybrid spaces.
Taking a closer look at how IT leadership has helped organizations, the pandemic stands out as an encouraging example of how it has impacted workplaces for the better because of its transformational capabilities. During this time, having an entire organization shift to a hybrid or work-from-home model demanded the expertise and capabilities of an accomplished Digital Workplace Solutions team. At the same time, there was a need for more robust Organizational Change Management (OCM) that covers all aspects of the workplace – from the device to the IT team, to policymakers and business units. At the center of it all is the employee – “the User and their experience.”
FAQs, policies, and processes have all been part of a business and are engrained in the change management process. How these policies or processes are being utilized and enforced, differentiates workplace adoption for a truly hybrid workplace. As we adapt to over-the-air provisioning solutions, secured BYOD/UYOD (Bring your own device or User Your Own Device), discussions around other futuristic technologies will leave behind debates about where to work and how to work. What could remain is the adoption of technology – “User adoption”. That User adoption includes everyone – You and I.
According to an ESG survey of more than 500 executives, 1 in 3 (30%) IT executive respondents believe that the ability of workers to effectively incorporate online collaboration tools into daily work patterns will be the most significant lasting change of the pandemic from a technology perspective. This makes it imperative for IT executives to observe employee experience from a variety of lenses. Therefore, the onus is on the IT teams to provide Digital Workplace Solutions to the employees such as: providing secure access to data from anywhere at any time, with reliable hardware and tools for seamless collaboration with their teams. In fact, Use Your Own Device (UYOD) could be a trend going forward.
Pandemic or not, this domain requires us to rapidly adapt to new technologies almost every single day. End users are not interested in who is providing the service or how it is reaching them. Users are concerned about their work and having a smooth and productive work experience. “Why should a user experience ‘IT’?” This school of thought changes IT strategies.
Digital Workplace Solutions must focus on End User Experience Management as against traditional mechanisms. They must ensure that associates and customers continue to evolve their IT and be ahead in the game. DWS must provide technology parity and experience parity while keeping in mind the human side of things ensuring Organizational Change Management (OCM) in transformation. Along with these, seamless workplace service solutions play an important role in the digital experience of our end users. Unified experience management covering all aspects of digital life, going beyond just monitoring devices will aid in better collaboration and enhance the productivity of tools.
The days of leading within silos have ended; for any organization to succeed, CIOs must work in close collaboration with other C-Suite executives to help drive most functions, including CHROs, CMOs, and CFOs. In the current day and age, employee safety and enabling an efficient hybrid work model are mission-critical for organizations. CIOs should now look at creating playbooks that can be used during calamities keeping in mind not just security but also providing a great employee experience.