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Guide to Digital Workplaces

Digital workplaces are at the center of many global enterprises. 

Digital technology provides a quick, easy, and efficient way of doing work––and platforms like digital workplaces allow you to create an environment where employees feel informed and engaged. 

While digital technology will never completely replace in-person communications, it still offers many benefits.

For over 87% of the senior managers, creating a digital workplace is now a priority. In fact, about 62% of them are already improving efficiency across their organizations by implementing digital transformation initiatives for their business processes. 

What is a digital workplace?

A digital workplace is a central place where everyone in your organization can easily communicate, collaborate and connect with others. It’s a place where all of your important operations and conversations live.

As more and more employees are looking for remote work opportunities, it has become crucial for organizations to implement digital workplace platforms in order to enable to business to be successful and achieve its business goals. 

Setting your employees up for success is a key ingredient to a good employee experience and should be one of the first things you consider when implementing a digital workplace. Digital workplaces help employees stay productive and engaged with the ability to share information instantly. This allows for quick decisions, a better-informed workforce, happy employees, and even happier customers. 

In order to implement a digital workplace effectively, you need to have a strategy. 

Digital workplace strategy 

In the age of digital transformation and evolution, digital workplaces require long-term vision, governance, measurement and evaluation––all of which require a solid digital workplace strategy. 

A digital workplace strategy will assure that your digital workplace aligns with and contributes to your company’s goals and overall culture. 

Creating a digital workplace strategy doesn’t have to be overwhelming. The first step towards preparing a solid strategy that adds value is to ask the right questions. Here’s what you should ask: 

  • What are your most important business goals?
  • How is the business performing against those goals?
  • Who are your employees and what do they need to do their jobs well?
  • What do your employees need to know, feel and do to be more successful?
  • What technology do you have that already contributes to your digital workplace?
  • Where are there gaps between employee needs and the tools you have available?
  • Can every employee connect to the information and tools they need to do their jobs, regardless of their device or location?
  • Do your systems integrate or work together effectively as they should?
  • What do you envision for the future of your digital workplace? 
  • What problem are you trying to solve by introducing a Digital Workplace?

5 elements of a digital workplace strategy

Data management, structured processes and delivering the right information to the right people at the right time should be the foundation of your digital workplace strategy. This ensures your digital workplace is the best platform for your organization and that it aligns with you goals. 

We’ve rounded up 5 main points every digital workplace strategy should include to ensure success.  

  1. Process management – You need to have a plan for your processes. How is it going to work? Digitize and customize your business processes and make them more efficient so you can speed up collaboration, automate routine tasks and integrate with third-party applications. 
  2. Project management – Outline tasks for project management. Project management promotes the management and tracking of projects to make sure all deadlines are being met and the project information is easily available to everyone involved.
  3. Case management – What will happen when you need to support or assistance for your digital workplace? That’s where case management comes in. You can track bugs, service requests, incidents, support tickets, claims, or anything else through agile workflows.
  4. Collaboration – Promote and improve collaboration, engagement and productivity of your employees with a customized dashboard, instant messaging, file sharing, and powerful search features.  
  5. Analytics – How are you going to monitor success? Automatically transform your company data into actionable insights through customized reports with advanced filters so you can measure success. 

A few more things to consider as you dive into how you are going to be using your digital workplace are your system and tool integration and how you display corporate news. As long as you align your strategy with your overall business goals and focus on these 5 main areas, you will set yourself up for a successful digital workplace experience. 

5 benefits of a digital workplace 

Digital technology and digital workplaces offer a lot of benefits for organizations of any size. 

  1. Easy collaboration 

Digital workplaces promote a collaborative culture by providing your employees with the tools that they need to communicate and coordinate with their team members. This smart and reliable communication allows you to cut down meeting times and give your staff more room for ideation and innovation and to become more involved in your organization. 

  1. Unite and engage workforce

Digital workplaces allow you to create a transparent work environment and provide your employees with the ability to easily track the status of any task or project they are working on. This leads to less follow ups and emails between employees because when the staff is on the same page, they are able to focus more on the shared business and organizational goals, ultimately becoming more engaged and united. 

By uniting and engaging your workforce, you are enabling them to complete work quickly and effectively, another great benefit for your business and your employees. 

  1. Employees can work from anywhere 

At larger organizations, you’re more likely going to run into a dispersed and sometimes global workforce. With digital workplaces, employees can work from anywhere. This includes access to all company data and applications from any device and from any location, the perfect tool for remote workers. 

In fact, according to the 2019 State of Remote Work report, over 99 percent of the workers want to work remotely at least once in their careers, 90% of them actually want to work remotely for the rest of their careers.

  1. Enhances employee and customer experience 

Connecting employees and making their jobs more efficient is the first step in enhancing the employee experience. While digital workplaces allow for more efficient work, they also enhance employee experience and in turn, impact customer experience. 

For organizations, when you have an engaged, efficient, and productive workforce, your customers are able to get the best of the talent and technology that your company has to offer. This leads to better customer experience and more satisfied customers who will not only come back to you, but also recommend others to you for more business. 

  1. Saves on cost and contributes to success 

Choosing a cost-effective digital workplace that allows your employees to work remotely can transform your business. You can also save on overall costs. For example a Digital Workplace reduces the cost of maintaining multiple workplace tools, the cost of office space by enabling remote working, as well as the cost through hosting data in the cloud.

This frees up funds for you to invest elsewhere like launching a new service or product to expand your business and further contribute to success. 

 Digital workplaces can transform the way your organization works, and one key piece of that is improving employee experience. 

Digital workplace employee experience 

The way we communicate in our daily lives – both professionally and personally – continues to change. Nowadays, most of us turn to digital technology, which can depersonalize the conversation or cause people to become disconnected. 

Providing the right combination of tools, culture and environment will help create a unique and positive employee experience matter their location, digital workplaces empower employees to stay productive and get the job done. 

Employees can also use digital workplaces to build communities of interest, share ideas, solve problems and collaborate in ways that make sense to them, all while delivering measurable business value and improving employee experience. 

Enabling a great employee experience leads to brand advocacy, happy customers and business success. Allow your organizations to communicate key information so that people feel informed, motivated, and empowered with a digital workplace.  

Digital workplace ROI 

Digital workplaces are long-term commitments, so it’s crucial that you measure the success and ROI to ensure you’re getting the most out of our investment. 

Without aligning your digital workplace to your business goals, the less likely you are going to be able to deliver value and the more likely you are to struggle through adoption. 

Metrics within your digital workplace platform such as the number of ‘views’ and ‘likes’ associated with content on the platform itself, may not be the best judge of the value it is offering. 

A more strategic approach to defining your ROI is  to measure against your business goals. 

For example, if your strategic business goal is to expand globally, your metrics should test how your intranet is supporting employees through collaboration across time-zones, use of translation features and mobile access. If your organization aims to encourage engagement, innovation and creativity, your metrics will need to correspond to the way your digital workplace supports idea generation and knowledge management. 

Some business goals and metrics are also easier to measure than others. While you’ll track metrics with hard numbers such as employee retention, you will also need to track ones that might be a little harder to quantify such as collaboration or engagement. Nonetheless, being very clear about what you are seeking to measure is critical to understanding your ROI and proving the value of your digital workplace.

Measuring the digital workplace ROI is critical, but there is not a one-size-fits-all approach.  Defining the most important business outcomes for digital transformation and making sure that you have the right metrics in place to evaluate your success is the best place to start.

Create a business case for your digital workplace

Looking to implement a digital workplace? You need to create buy-in. The best way to get your executive team and senior stakeholders on board is to build a business case to showcase the value of a new solution.  

Before you build your case, follow our top 9 essential elements that will help you sell your intranet software so you can transform your workforce.   

Transform your workplace

The speed of technological change in today’s digital world means that we expect regular updates from every platform to improve the way we work. 

Selecting the best digital workplace for the changing needs of your organization is critical and a significant investment. Likewise, encouraging user-adoption is just as important, as they can greatly impact productivity and workplace connections. 

A great business tool in the hands of motivated workers creates a domino effect, ultimately leading to business success. However, you won’t get very far if you don’t align your tools with your goals to add maximum value. 

Digital workplace platforms make it possible for employees to easily communicate and collaborate without distractions. This increases employee experience and engagement and leads to a boost in productivity. With a central hub and unified platform, and easy setup–you can transform your workplace and get started right away.

Jordan Stokes

Jordan Stokes