As your business evolves, it’s easy for technology and processes to get out of date, resulting in workplace inefficiencies that adversely affect productivity, employee satisfaction and customer experience.
The Harvard Business Review Analytic Services Survey in Feb 2018 found that 78% of senior enterprise business executives said they believe evolving towards a modern workplace is essential – but just 31% thought their organisation is forward-thinking enough to pull it off.
Bearing in mind this survey was conducted in 2018, we can only assume more business leaders understand the importance of the modern workplace. Since the massive upheavals faced by organisations worldwide in 2020, we get more approaches than ever before to get help, advice and support to turn what were temporary business continuity plans into long-term, sustainable IT practices.
Why 2020 is the year of the modern workspace
Nobody has missed this year’s brutal reminder that modern businesses need more flexibility, planning and innovation built-in. And while the events that have pushed these themes front of mind have been abrupt, brutal and in many cases, devastating, they have laid bare the challenges and opportunities IT processes, teams and technology have ahead of them.
“Implementing the Modern Workspace in your organisation isn’t just a failsafe for future catastrophes. It’s been a long time coming.”Lee Ganly, CIO at Acora
Your end-users already have enough to manage. Spinning plates at home and work, they need systems and devices that make their working day more comfortable. Wrangling with ineffective tech, struggling to collaborate with a dispersed team and fighting with tools frustrates employees and kills productivity. Improving employee experiences isn’t new, but the way we track, measure and respond to it is changing too. The old adage that a bad worker blames their tools is old for a reason. If productivity is slipping, or even stagnant, there’s a problem. But it’s not always the employee at fault.
What is a Modern Workspace?
A Modern Workspace meets the needs of your employees and the business. It’s not just based on having the most effective technology, though. The modern workspace has to accommodate physical needs. Now more than ever, mobility and remote access are vital drivers for businesses looking to upgrade their IT systems, devices and processes.
Why is it essential to implement modern workspace design now? Successful design, implementation and management of a Modern Workspace empowers employees and streamlines business operations.
“72% of IT leaders said developing a workplace of the future is ‘extremely’ or ‘very important’, with 85% seeing improved employee productivity or morale as the biggest benefit.”IDG’s Workspace of the Future Study 2019
At the same time, many brought up concerns around legacy IT infrastructure, culture and skills. And this was before the pandemic had everyone in a business continuity whirlwind. If questions are bubbling up about how fit-for-purpose your workspace is, it’s time to take stock. For example:
- How many apps does it take to fulfil a task? Do your apps and your data operate in silos or integrate to promote automation?
- How much of your business relies on legacy infrastructure vs hybrid or cloud?
- How many tools and devices do your end-users need to log into, tab through and battle with daily tasks?
- How easy or difficult is it for the staff to get the help they need from their peers when they need it?
- Do your employees need to access systems from outside your main office?
- Are employees resorting to using their own devices without IT control?
- Can they effectively collaborate with suppliers, customers and others outside of the organisation.
- How secure are your systems and data when employees are creating their own work-hacks or using their own devices to work remotely?
- How about your customers? How is your current workplace affecting their experience?
- How many repetitive tasks swallow up operational costs when your employees could be doing something more meaningful?
Harnessing the power of the cloud and a suite of integrated applications improves communication, collaboration and output. Helping employees focus on what’s important without the frustrations and inefficiencies that build up with duct tape and glue IT setups —the kind of IT systems that get patched together because of immediate necessity rather than forward planning.
What does it take to create a modern workspace?
Your primary goals for your modern workspace are:
You may have some of these priorities dialled in. But changing one part of your system can have nasty knock-on effects on the rest. Losing you time and money as you scramble for another roll of duct tape. To avoid all this, the modern workspace has to be looked at holistically to define what needs improving, what can remain, what can be integrated and what needs updating. Microsoft 365 includes Office 365, Windows 10 Enterprise, and Enterprise Mobility Services and a variety of productivity and collaboration tools designed to support modern ways of working, help facilitate digital transformation, and most importantly keep your business secure.
Why is Microsoft the most popular option?
Microsoft 365 includes Microsoft Power Automate, making it easy to implement Robotic Process Automation (RPA) across your organisation. Relieve your employees from those boring but critical tasks and help them focus on driving innovation instead.
Worried you’ll be restricted to Microsoft only tools? Don’t be. Microsoft365 integrates with hundreds of apps, including LinkedIn, document management systems and CRM tools, form builders for your marketing team and more.
Help your team collaborate with direct communications tools like Microsoft Teams and enable multiple people to access, amend and work on a document at the same time.
Microsoft’s advanced security features defend you from phishing, malware and zero-day attacks. Protect your data, apps and devices to avoid millions in financial losses and reputational damage.
Navigating your way from your current IT environment to the flexible, secure and optimised workspace your business needs can be a daunting prospect.
Find out how Acora can help, advise and execute a sustainable operational uplift here.