The way we conduct business is changing, and it’s happening at an unprecedented pace. Such change would typically take years, and it would be a gradual process. However, due to the onset of COVID starting in late 2019, businesses throughout the US have been faced with the task of reevaluating the nature of the workplace. The change to a digital working environment happened quickly, and now many businesses are asking, what’s next?
Even with public spaces slowly opening up, the way we work has changed forever...and it’s for the better. Crowded cubicles are being switched out for individual home offices. Interacting with employees is now happening through messaging software. The way businesses make strategic decisions is also changing with better data and artificial intelligence (AI) technology. Once our society has fully transitioned to a digital work environment, employers will be searching for a new set of skills when hiring.
The future is exciting. Virtual collaboration in the workplace is driving businesses to new heights. Let’s take a closer look at what to expect in the workplace of the future.
Digital Work Space
Converting to a digital work environment might sound intimidating at first. However, with the right technology, you can make the change seamlessly. When constructing your digital office, there are a few important factors to consider, including production, interaction, and security.
Here are some tips to keep in mind:
Your business must be able to continue providing services to clients. Luckily, most production is done on computers, but you also need the ability to distribute services. First, make sure you have all the required software for your primary business purposes. Then have a platform set up to dispute your work, such as Sharepoint or Google Drive.
Communication and collaboration in the workplace is a top priority, but how can you achieve the same level of interaction that is standard in a traditional office space while operating remotely? You must have software in place for video conferencing and messaging between employees. There are lots of options available, including Zoom for video conferencing and Slack for employee messaging. Adequate employee and client interaction will allow operations to continue smoothly, and it will help keep employee morale positive.
A common concern is the overall security of your workplace technologies and how to keep your business protected against cyber threats. First and foremost, all employees should be connected to a dedicated Virtual Private Network (VPN) when working. A VPN uses a protected network to disguise your online presence.
Evidence-based Decision Making
Data is important. An upside to using a digital workplace strategy is the ability to gather more information. This data, in turn, will assist your business in making smarter evidence-based decisions.
The use of AI is becoming more common within everyday business practices. It’s no longer a tool that only billion-dollar corporations can afford to use. AI can sift through large amounts of data quickly and organize it into an easy-to-understand format. This speeds up the time it takes to conduct research and provide solutions to your clients.
Future Work Skills
Some fear that the digitalization of the workplace will lead to robots taking over and replacing human employees. Not the case. There will always be a place for human intervention. However, the skills employers desire when hiring are changing. There are some things machines cannot achieve, such as emotional intelligence and creative thinking.
Instead of searching for candidates with subject-specific knowledge that a machine can easily replicate, consider the following work skills:
- Creative Problem Solving
- Idea Generation
- Learning & Development
- Good Judgement
- Technically Savvy
These are broad work skills that will be applicable in any business of the future.
With all of this taken into consideration, your digital workplace experience of the future will not just be necessary for the survival of your business, but it will be a means for growth and innovation. To create a thriving digital environment, your business needs to have a dedicated IT team to help keep your systems running smoothly and improve upon them as technology changes.
Don’t tackle your IT needs alone! Do you already have an IT team? We can help evaluate and determine if your current setup is ready for the digital workforce and the workplace of the future. Check out our IT Assessment Checklist to assess your current needs and your options for the future. The Windsor Group Sourcing Advisory is here to help you every step of the way. Head to windzr.com and learn more!