The traditional 9-to-5 office job is becoming a dated concept. More and more people now work remotely from multiple locations and outside of normal business hours. Why? Because employers and clients expect it. In return, employees expect flexible working hours and technological solutions to make remote work possible. They expect a digital workplace.
Why does the digital workplace matter?
There are many benefits for businesses and workers. Firstly, employees who can use a digital workplace are more collaborative, more accountable, and more engaged. They’re more productive because they have flexibility and tools that help – rather than hinder – them. Wouldn’t it be great to know that even if your office workers are away most of the time, they’re still highly engaged and productive?
But how is this true? Does productivity really increase when people aren’t in the office all the time? Yes! Offices are full of distractions and interruptions. When people can choose where to work from, and they can do so comfortably, they can focus and have fewer distractions. It’s a productivity boom!
Plus, there’s another benefit to helping your staff work well remotely: it can save your organization a lot of money. In the long term, more engaged and satisfied employees can lower your employee turnover rate. In the shorter term, it can lower your facility costs. Do you need a large office with physical workspaces for every single employee, or can you make do just as well with a smaller office where remote workers can occasionally come in?
How do you enable the digital workplace?
If you’re interested in enabling a digital workplace, the first question to ask is how your organization’s technology currently enables remote working. Can your employees work from anywhere if they need to? Do they have easy, secured access to their email, their necessary tools and software, and files? If not, consider Office 365 as a first step. It extends your physical space into the digital workplace by enabling remote access and collaboration.
The great thing about Office 365 is that it contains the popular and useful applications that most people are already familiar with: your Microsoft Office suite. But Office 365 also comes packed with many features and apps that put you on the forefront of emerging technologies that will help you work and connect continually into the future.
If you’re worried that meetings won’t be as productive if people are scattered, or that remote workers will lose out by not being together or not seeing the same materials – Office 365 solves that problem too. With the OneDrive and SharePoint applications, all your files are easily accessible. With Skype for Business and Teams, you can have online meetings, whiteboard remotely, and record everything. So not only can you still be highly productive – a lot of your meetings and collaboration are automatically documented and immediately accessible to your team, no matter where they are!
Digital = flexible = productive
It’s clear that people value workplace flexibility, especially when they get a say in how and where they can work. The digital workplace brings that flexibility, which can increase employees’ satisfaction and engagement. Your business benefits as a whole.
So, how do you achieve the digital mindset? How do you make that transition to the digital workplace? First, start thinking about the cloud – and stop thinking about office cubicles. Imagine how you and your staff would like to work if you could be anywhere at any time. What tools would you need to achieve that vision?
And don’t feel that you have to jump straight to an all-cloud pure digital workspace right away. Every organization’s needs are different, and you might want to add in just one solution at a time. Take the time to choose the right solutions that will evolve and scale with your needs, and you’ll grow in the right direction.
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In late 2017, Wiles Brothers Fertilizer was in need of streamlining and updating their IT. Located near Plattsmouth, NE, they offer a complete line of agricultural products and services for private and commercial use. They grew quickly and outstripped what their current IT provider could handle. OXEN consulted with them on their needs and created a roadmap for their IT that Wiles Bros could implement based on their budgetary needs. In Summer 2018 they will be building a new office and OXEN’s services will keep up with their rapid growth needs. To help update and streamline Wiles Bros’ technology, OXEN…