Over the years, the term ‘Digital Workplace’ has earned different interpretations. Now, the term has a conceptual meaning. Technology efficiently used is now capable of creating a virtual workplace equivalent to a physical workplace. Digital Workplaces aim at evolving new and effective ways of working in order to increase performance and employee involvement. People believe digital workplaces provide everything especially digital assistance an employee needs to get work done. This study focuses on how digitalization will change the way we work in the future. With more and more digital workplaces being created our future is ought to be more challenging and satisfying at the sam
Over the years, the term ‘Digital Workplace’ has earned different interpretations. Now, the term has a conceptual meaning. Technology efficiently used is now capable of creating a virtual workplace equivalent to a physical workplace. Digital Workplaces aim at evolving new and effective ways of working in order to increase performance and employee involvement. People believe digital workplaces provide everything especially digital assistance an employee needs to get work done. This study focuses on how digitalization will change the way we work in the future. With more and more digital workplaces being created our future is ought to be more challenging and satisfying at the same time.
Back in 2009, Paul Miller wrote a book called, “The Digital Workplace: How technology is liberating work”, in the book, he mentions that Digital Workplace was defined by three elements: Digital Presence, Governance and Speed and Efficiency. There is no defined meaning of this term. It differs from individual to individual. Today, workplace is not referred to just a physical place of work. Work can be done at any time of the day using a connected device. It is all about the transformations that are occurring due to advancing technology. An appropriate Digital Workplace would include technology to improve communication, business processes and content management. Through Mobile and cloud services, it becomes easier to get the company’s information 24x7, without geographic barriers affecting the work. It should provide an engaging environment where all the tools required for a consumer-like online experience are possible.
Why Digital Workplaces?
Such digital workplaces are required to have a vibrant and active workforce. Here, the environment is highly personalized which enables a person to work from the comforts of their home. One can work from anywhere with flexible hours. In such an atmosphere, technology proves to be a tool of empowerment rather than constraining the employee. It allows them to perform their jobs effectively and efficiently. It also helps people reach their full potential, and easily collaborate with other people. These spaces can be beneficial for companies operating on a low budget, as they get collaborative work platforms and effective outcomes.
There is a number of other benefits of working in such a personalized atmosphere. You will notice an increase in employees’ retention duration. It will also lead to faster marketing of the products. The security risk is less in comparison to a physical workplace. An employer is able to attract more talented people, and achieve higher results. Through collaboration and teamwork, various innovative ideas come up, which in turn help a company growth.
How did it start?
Let’s go back and analyze how a digital workplace actually evolved. It all started with the introduction of email. It followed with payrolls, CRM and HRs systems. After a while, 3D Printing came into existence. Such discoveries led to the evolution of a digital workspace. With advancing technology, it has become so easy to access the internet. The internet connection is available 24x7 in almost every city. With such connections, the digital workplace is now highly preferred and used by a number of people. It has become an easier means of working. Let’s take the example of paperless offices. Here, you will find that emphasis has been on replacing all the paperwork with digital processes. This will not only save the money spent on paper but also make it easy to spread information through cloud sharing. In addition, it will lead to employees doing smart work and bringing up new ideas and strategies.
A digital workplace involves a combination of people and technology. The term ‘People’ refers to all the employees, their strategies and the resulting impact on the consumers. Technology refers to all the tools and applications that have been developed so far. An amalgamation of the two requires a strategic way to come together and shape the employee experience. It is important to align it with the business mission, working style and overall values, to increase employee engagement.
What does a successful digital workplace look like?
It is not difficult to create a proper workspace strategy. One should keep in mind to have a proper idea for getting people to work with the advancing technology. By asking a few questions, one can easily develop a plan for creating an effective workplace.
With a proper team and strategy, one can easily develop an efficient digital workplace for the organization.
The solution to this challenge was developing a secure platform for collaboration for the Panasonic employees. Employees can easily share the links and videos. The files can be easily shared through Email, Drop box, Google Drive and other such services. Tools in Microsoft Office and Microsoft Outlook let you collaborate documents in real time. Based on projects and groups, one can easily create chat sessions. The managers can invite employees to join groups while granting limited permissions.
A solution was found for such needs of high customization. A secure online connection was created where participants of Duke CE can easily discuss classroom topics, ask questions and share ideas. It is fully customized with the company’s logo and color. A virtual classroom has been created where discussions can be carried in a private and safe environment. The instructors and participants can easily connect with each other through a range of computer devices and mobiles.
There are a few misconceptions regarding a Digital Workplace. It is not applicable to any particular individual or industry. For example, a restaurant uses an iPhone to get orders. A doctor uses an iPad to write important information. Judges before making any decision need to review a digital transcript. So, the usage of ‘Digital Workplace’ cannot be limited to a certain industry.
Intranet and Digital Workplace are two different concepts. Such workspace is not a re-branding of Intranet. It is a platform for providing a virtual workspace to the people. An intranet is a popular platform for fulfilling organizational tasks. But, a Digital Workplace has the ability to bring together functional intranet of an organization.
Having a collection of tools and technologies, and calling it a digital workplace is a different thing. When you consciously create a workspace to suit your needs, it becomes a place which will actually help you achieve higher results. One has to strategically decide the necessary tools required and then, design the workplace. Digital Workplace is not a one-time process; it is an on-going one. It continues throughout your working hours. It has existed for decades. It had a different meaning five years back, and it will have a totally different meaning five years from now. It will continue to grow, expand and redefine itself.
One cannot expect to create an appropriate Digital Workplace at once. You ask the employees about their working needs and the required technologies and create a suitable environment. But, with changing times, technology also changes. You need to keep increasing the required tools. You will need to revisit and have a look at your existing workspace. After analysis, the required additions have to be made. This is necessary for fulfilling the company’s goals and motives. It also keeps the employees encouraged to work hard and put in more efforts.