Change is inevitable in the business world. It happens in every industry, and it affects every company. It also — for some reason — has developed a bad reputation.
Change is often seen as a problem. Companies and the people who work for them resist it. They see change as the enemy, rather than a strategy that enhances performance, adds value, and provides companies with a competitive advantage.
In 2023, companies that are open to change have various new, powerful, disruptive business tools at their disposal that can be used to equip the workforce. To take full advantage of these new capabilities, however, companies must change how they look at technology.
It is not enough to simply do technology projects. To truly empower today’s workforce, businesses must be digital.
The Right Approach to Tech
Leveraging technology to achieve business goals involves a never-ending cycle of developing strategy, deploying tools, and managing ongoing operations. Too often, an organization’s leadership pays too much attention to the tools and too little to the digital capabilities they need or the impact they have after they go live.
Selecting and deploying a tool is just the beginning. The workforce demands a continuous release of capabilities and enhancements to the service experience fueled by data. Here are some steps that leadership can take to optimize the impact of the tech tools they are deploying:
- Ensure authority is distributed – Digital tools on their own do not bring about digital transformation. Success in this area requires automating workflows by giving managers direct access to information and transactions. Distributed authority enables and empowers managers to make people-centric decisions within their sphere of authority without redundant oversight or unnecessary approvals.
- Elevate digital competence — The digital marketplace is inherently dynamic. Digital platforms are updated and enhanced at a much faster pace than previous on-premise software models. To ensure that technology provides maximum value, employees must be competent at using the digital tools deployed. Many organizations now look to their people experience team, which is responsible for ensuring HR decisions are people-centric, to provide the knowledge and experience needed for successfully executing a digital strategy.
- Prioritize data fitness — Data is the lifeblood of digital solutions and a key driver of organizational agility. As organizations increase the amount of data available to their digital tools, they also increase the value those tools can deliver. Organizations should leverage data to drive better decision-making and create personalized workforce experiences. This can enhance the operations of every department, from human resources to finance to cybersecurity.
- Develop value thinking — Workplace tech requires an investment. To realize a return on that investment, the implementation of new tools must be tied to a clear understanding of how new capabilities will produce valued outcomes. When tech fails to produce a valued outcome, it is rarely because it is incapable of doing so. More often it is because it hasn’t been used to its fullest potential. Decisions related to workplace tech must revolve around outcomes and results, rather than processes and services.
- Embrace changefulness — Change enablement must be a core management competency. It empowers managers who are guided by a clear understanding of the organization’s mission and business model to respond to changes. Organizational structures must allow information to flow frictionlessly up, down, and across the organization, with a high value on transparency. Systems that require top-down communication and centralized coordination are too slow for success in the digital age.
The Right Tech to Deploy
Once organizations champion change, they can effectively deploy workplace tech to empower and support that change. Here are two tools that illustrate the type of innovation that is possible when organizations embrace digital transformation.
Reejig is an award-winning workforce intelligence platform focused on identifying unused potential in an organization. It describes itself as a “central nervous system for all talent decisions.” It is workplace tech that helps organizations identify, resource, and deploy underutilized talent.
Reejig is built upon the world’s first independently audited Ethical Talent AI, which it uses to generate a comprehensive and real-time overview of an organization’s talent ecosystem. This “total skill visibility” helps organizations optimize their workforce by reskilling, upskilling, and effectively mobilizing employees. The insight it provides can also be used to develop personalized career pathways, which can contribute to a better employee experience and higher retention rates.
Firstup is an intelligent communication platform that uses data to drive higher employee engagement by creating a personalized employee journey. It is rooted in the belief that one-size-fits-all communication is essentially one-size-fits-none communication. Using real-time data on employee engagement, Firstup determines the most meaningful campaigns, the optimal time, and the best channel for communicating with each employee.
Digital wellness is a key component of the Firstup approach to engagement. Sometimes known as digital wellbeing, digital wellness aims to ensure that technology is designed to promote healthy use and avoid digital overload. By identifying and empowering the most effective means of communication for each unique employee, Firstup reduces digital noise and ensures that messages are relevant and impactful.
Every organization has the opportunity to leverage workplace tech in 2023 in a way that will improve productivity while also enhancing the employee experience. The key to achieving both effectively is choosing tools that have a strategic and measurable impact and deploying them in a people-centric way.