A transformation of the digital workplace – the top 5 growth areas
The modern digital workplace is all about allowing businesses to work more efficiently and effectively, while also aligning with the needs and desires of their workforce. The workplace is changing fast – here are 5 things we predict will be the biggest growth areas:
Tracking and measurement tools
From fitness wearables to smart scales, the world has never been more obsessed with tracking and measuring everything. This will increase more in the workplace. There will be more time-tracking tools for instance, which will allow the new workforce to be less connected to the physical workplace of the office and instead work in a place and time that suits them. We predict that there will also be a lot of innovation around tools that measure productivity but, even more interestingly, tools that measure employee wellness and health in such a way as to avoid overwork or burnout.
Communication tools are also on the rise from Slack to Hipchat. Meetings are becoming less frequent while business communication and transparency is becoming a big trend. Businesses will be evolving the way comms are handled both internally and externally through aggressive integrations of new messaging tools.
Crowdsourcing as an internal tool for innovation and ideas will also become more commonplace through digital tools. Businesses will look more to collective wisdom to inform decision making. 3m recently tried this and crowdsourced its strategy process to 1200 employees across 40 countries. This led to 700 new ideas being generated and the identification of 9 new potential markets and revenue opportunities in the ten of billions of pounds. They hold live innovation events to generate new ideas and to engage employees. Anything from ideation platforms, polling, surveys, and forums will become massively used tools within organisations to gather ideas and thoughts from employees fast and efficiently.
Already a hot trend, we expect 2017 to see more focus on data (particularly big data) within organisations. Workforce data across areas such as engagement and performance will become better utilised and integrated across the organisation. To date, there hasn’t been much focus beyond the collection of data but, given the massive increase in digital tools, we see the way data is analysed and interpreted being fundamentally improved to allow organisations to make smarter decisions. This data will also be plugged into the recruitment process allowing HR teams to make decisions on talent identification and management.
Remote working encouraged through digital tools
An interesting quote from Accenture CEO Pierre Nanterre was “We are a virtual organisation…our offices are tactfully useful but strategically irrelevant”. Work has become mobile and virtual and not defined by the office environment. 2017 will see great evolutions in this belief with new tools allowing us to manage this huge shift more effectively.
And one more for luck – VR as a tool for recruitment and learning
Virtual reality is already being used by recruiting teams to give potential recruits a view on the organisation, for example using VR to tour the office. VR in training is also being discussed and examples are also coming through from industries such as medicine and the military. 2017 will see leaps made towards interviewing candidates, visiting global offices, and conducting meetings and conferences.