How you create a digital workplace environment will vary depending on your business needs to go digital. It’s important to assess your current processes, consider the challenges you may face in order to transform them, and create clear communication channels with your staff to ensure everyone is following the same procedures going forwards.
To achieve all of this, you’ll need to come up with a solid digital workplace strategy. Keep reading to discover the many benefits of having a digital workplace strategy – and the five key steps you should follow to create a thriving digital workplace environment!
What is a Digital Workplace Strategy?
A digital workplace strategy is a plan that outlines your business objectives and the ways technology (including hardware and software) can help you meet them. Digitizing your workplace is an important step towards improving the efficiency of your business processes, increasing employee engagement, and optimizing your customer experience.
Benefits of a Digital Workplace Strategy
Implementing a digital workplace strategy can help increase employee engagement and boost your customer satisfaction rating (CSR). Research has shown that companies who have adopted digital workflows grow faster, are more productive, and are more competitive compared to those that haven’t.
Digital workplace strategies aid growth by outlining the ways in which your business is going to use technology to its advantage in both the short and long term. Coming up with a plan now will help you understand the potential impact of your technology investments on efficiency, output, and team culture, among other factors. Then, looking ahead, you’ll be able to spot new opportunities for process improvements that will help you stay one step ahead of the competition.
Think about your business’s current technological infrastructure. Are you using the tech you’ve got to its fullest potential? Doing a digital workplace audit will help you discover whether you could be getting more out of the technology you’re using. Use the findings from your audit to shape (or reshape) your digital workplace strategy to:
- Streamline business operations
- Boost employee engagement
- Improve communication
- Increase agility
- Prioritize security
- Create integrated remote/hybrid work set up
- Encourage collaboration
- Transform the customer experience
5 Key Steps to Create a Successful Digital Workplace Strategy
The first thing you need to do to create a successful digital workplace strategy is carry out an audit of current processes. This will highlight any inefficiencies in your day-to-day operations and help you set goals and establish a strategy for meeting them. This kind of audit should go beyond looking at the technologies you’re employing. You also want to find out:
- What are the key pain points of your staff?
- What are specific obstacles in your service delivery chain?
- What new opportunities for growth have you spotted that you’re not currently exploiting?
A people-centric, results-oriented approach will help you streamline processes and set clear goals. Gain feedback through interviews, anonymous surveys, or team workshops.
2. Set Goals
It’s important that you set SMART goals that align with your operational needs. SMART goals are:
- Specific – well defined, clear, and unambiguous
- Measurable – defined by specific criteria that measure how close you are to achieving your goal
- Achievable – attainable, ambitious without being impossible
- Realistic – within reach, relevant to your company and operations
- Timely – with a clearly defined timeline, including start point and deadline
In order to make your long-term goals achievable, you could try breaking them down into stages, with smaller, “milestone” objectives to help measure your progress. However, the most important thing to remember when you’re setting goals is to share them across your business. You’ll only hit your targets if everyone knows what they’re working towards.
3. Create a Plan – Add Direction!
The audit is your starting point. Meeting your objectives is your end goal. Now, you need to work out how you’re going to get from A to B. Identify the change that’s going to make the greatest difference and start there. You want your digital workplace strategies to deliver value quickly for two reasons:
- To make the most of your new tech in the most time-efficient manner
- To demonstrate its effectiveness, as this may help get your stakeholders on board when it comes to your longer-term/more ambitious goals
4. Establish Best Practice
Your digital workplace strategy needs to be rolled out, and made available to, every individual facet of your organization. In order for you to reach your goals, everyone inside the business should understand how to follow your new procedures – and why they’ve been implemented.
Let your employees know about your:
- Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy
- New service/process documentation
- Security protocols
- Cloud storage best practice
- Any other changes you’ve made to your operations
Once finalized, it’s a good idea to keep a handbook of your best practices in a shared folder where everyone can access it.
5. Get Your Stakeholders Involved
“Most people don’t like change. They revolt against it unless they can clearly see the advantage it brings. For that reason, when good leaders prepare to take action or make changes, they take people through a process to get them ready for it.” – John C. Maxwell
One of the biggest challenges leaders face when trying to implement a digitization strategy is resistance to change, so it’s important that you can demonstrate the benefits of your proposed changes to get reluctant stakeholders on side.
Accountability and oversight are two tools you could use to your advantage when looking to increase stakeholder involvement; appointing stakeholders to specific projects/tasks may help boost engagement levels.
In short, the creation of a successful digital workplace strategy requires good communication across multiple levels. It’s crucial you keep process documentation up to date and inform people of any changes ahead of time. To mitigate pushbacks, practice active listening and make sure you can demonstrate the success of your initiatives.
To find out how one of Europe’s leading HVAC companies is managing the digitalization of their business processes, check out our Crafting Your Future session with Tatjana Wiest, Platform Manager with Vaillant Group: Digitalization of Business Processes.