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Digital workplace
Quixy Editorial Team
August 10, 2023
Table of contents
Reading Time: 12 minutes

Today, we shall discuss a concept combining two of the most used words in recent times – digital and workplace.

That’s right; this article is dedicated to the digital workplace, which is currently the need of the hour.

What is a Digital Workplace?

The digital workplace is the use of digital transformation at work to improve the productivity and efficiency of business operations by aligning technology, employees, and business processes. It involves the modernization of traditional business processes, workflows, and collaboration through the adoption of digital technology.

A digital workplace, simply defined, is a virtual workplace setting. It is equivalent to the physical space, except it is virtual.

Just like a physical office, a virtual workplace plays a major role in engaging employees, ensuring efficiency, and maintaining a great culture. This is why it needs to be managed and taken care of properly. Let’s expand this further –

The key factors in a digital workplace are:

  1. People: People come first here. Their productivity and satisfaction are paramount; thus, they get the front seat.
  2. Technology: Digital workplace is 100% technology-driven. Thanks to the increased demand, advancements are making it easier to work virtually.
  3. Management: Coordination between people and technology is very important. This is only possible when the management and culture are strong and helpful. So, management occupies a big spot in the heart of the digital workplace.

Also read: 7 Workplace Health and Safety Apps Redefining OHS in Times of the Pandemic

Why does one need Digital Workplace?

According to the annual State of the Digital Workplace Report, 72% regard digital workplace as “extremely important or very important.” The Digital Workplace is the cornerstone for modern organizations, fostering collaboration, productivity, and agility. One compelling reason for adopting a digital workplace is the ability to break down geographical barriers. With remote work becoming the norm, a digital workplace enables employees to connect, communicate, and collaborate seamlessly from anywhere in the world, expanding your talent pool and ensuring business continuity.

Moreover, a digital workplace streamlines processes and boosts efficiency. It centralizes information, making it easily accessible, and automates routine tasks, freeing time for employees to focus on more strategic activities. This enhances productivity and allows for better decision-making by providing real-time insights. Additionally, a well-implemented digital workplace can enhance employee satisfaction and retention, empowering individuals with the tools they need to work efficiently and flexibly. A digital workplace is crucial for organizations looking to thrive in today’s digital era, offering a competitive edge through improved collaboration, efficiency, and employee satisfaction.

Debunking misconceptions about a Digital Workplace platform

Step into the realm of the digital era, where organizations strive to streamline operations, foster collaboration, and boost productivity by adopting digital workplace platforms. Yet, lurking in the shadows are pervasive misconceptions that cast doubt on the true potential of these platforms. Fear not, for in this enlightening article, we shall dispel these misconceptions and unveil the remarkable capabilities of a digital workplace platform.

1. Misconception: Digital workplace platforms are only for large organizations.

Reality: Picture this: a bustling office with hundreds of employees frantically working together. While digital workplace platforms are indeed favored by larger enterprises, their transformative power transcends organizational size. These platforms offer scalability and adaptability, empowering small and medium-sized businesses to tailor them to their unique needs. Whether you lead a small team or command an army of professionals, a digital workplace platform can revolutionize communication, knowledge sharing, and collaboration.

2. Misconception: Digital workplace platforms are expensive and time-consuming to implement.

Reality: Ah, the lingering myth of complexity and exorbitant costs. Fear not, for technology has paved the way for a new era of user-friendly platforms that defy such notions. With rapid advancements, deploying a digital workplace platform can be swift and affordable. The long-term benefits of heightened productivity, streamlined processes, and reduced operational costs outweigh any initial investment, making it a worthy endeavor for forward-thinking organizations.

3. Misconception: Digital workplace platforms are only useful for remote teams.

Reality: The rise of remote work has certainly propelled the popularity of digital workplace platforms, but their value extends far beyond remote teams. These platforms serve as dynamic central hubs where employees can seamlessly access crucial tools and information regardless of location. Even in traditional office setups, these platforms amplify communication, foster cross-departmental collaboration, and elevate overall efficiency.

4. Misconception: Digital workplace platforms are a one-size-fits-all solution.

Reality: Ah, the beauty of diversity! Every organization dances to the rhythm of its unique requirements and workflows, and digital workplace platforms acknowledge and embrace this diversity. They offer customization options, allowing businesses to shape the platform to their precise needs, cultivating a personalized digital environment. From selecting collaboration tools to integrating existing systems, organizations can fine-tune the platform to align with their processes, enhancing the employee experience.

5. Misconception: Digital workplace platforms hinder face-to-face interaction and employee engagement.

Reality: The naysayers suggest that digital workplace platforms stifle in-person interaction. But hold your horses! These platforms were crafted to complement, not replace, traditional forms of communication. They provide additional channels for collaboration, empowering employees to connect, share ideas, and synergize more effectively. Far from dampening employee engagement, digital workplace platforms foster a sense of community, facilitate recognition and feedback, and establish a transparent avenue for communication.

Cast aside the shroud of misconceptions and embrace the undeniable advantages of digital workplace platforms. Organizations of all sizes and industries can bask in their boundless benefits. By debunking these myths, we have unraveled digital workplace platforms’ true essence and potential. Let us embark on this digital journey, where optimization, collaboration, and unprecedented opportunities await in the ever-evolving landscape of work.

The key elements for a digital workplace– your complete digital workplace toolkit

The digital toolkit consists of all the technologies and tools you will need to build a successful digital workplace. While every business needs a few common tools, the final list will completely depend on your industry and your specific requirements. We are going to speak about the top 7 categories of tools that almost all organizations will need.

digital workplace
Key elements of digital workplace
  • Communication: Messaging is the first tool because collaboration heavily depends on it in the digital workplace. Email, IM, mobile messaging, and microblogging are the most popular forms of communication. Examples include Microsoft Teams, Slack, etc.
  • Productivity: The popular tools that help employees work efficiently are word processors, presentation software, spreadsheets, task management tools, etc. Examples include Google Docs, Office 365, Trello, etc.
  • Collaboration: From Web Conferencing using Zoom or Microsoft Teams, multiple software programs are enabling clear collaboration between partners, clients, and employees.
  • Sharing: Here, we are specifically speaking about sharing information. Blogs, an intranet, and a personalized homepage are the popular tools used.
  • Crowdsourcing: Everything from forums to surveys, polls, and ideation platforms come under crowdsourcing tools.
  • Applications: CRM is one of the most pivotal applications that companies need. Besides that, there are ERP systems, HR systems, expense claims, etc., that empower employees to access multiple applications online without depending on one person or department. These may be web-based COTS applications or custom-built using low-code no-code platforms.
  • Mobility: The digital workplace requires easy access to tools from various devices. So, remote scanners, laptops, smartphones, etc., are mandatory.

Importance of a Digital Workplace in Today’s World

The digital workplace is now more of a launching pad for business development than a strict requirement. People are now ready for a new type of workplace thanks to the use of technological resources and the development of AI.  

Social expectations

A new category of employee communication tools has emerged because of how people communicate daily. Various video and text communication tools are helping businesses to connect to remote employees and enhance the team’s efficiency.

Need for ‘new normal’

Companies had to expand their digital workplaces during the COVID-19 pandemic rapidly. So, the rise of a trend toward remote work will make the digital workplace more critical in the future.

Flexible working hours

Fixed hours are becoming less and less relevant. Businesses prioritize quality and efficiency over location and time of operation. Employees have constant access to company resources and data in the digital workplace.

Data management

Software tools enable the synchronization of files and data used by multiple employees. It also helps provide access to the most recent information to the employees from any location and at any time.

Changed workforce type

With the rise of freelancing and the gig economy, hiring and retaining the best people is becoming difficult. Furthermore, due to the wide range of digital tools, the workforce now consists of gig workers or remote consultants from different backgrounds.

Also Read: The Future of Work: How No-Code is Transforming Job Roles and Requirements

What are the benefits of a Digital Workplace?

The sudden shift from a physical office to a digital workplace can be daunting. It requires investment in new tools, a change in the work culture, disengaging from a paper environment to applications and online forms, etc. This is why putting a strategy in place for a seamless shift and hassle-free progress is highly recommended.

If you are still worried about the expense, please skim through the benefits below, and we are positive your concerns will be erased. As per a study, 87% of CIOs believe digitally empowering employees can drive at least 5% additional revenue growth over 3 years. The same report also states that 54% of CIOs agreed that the ability of their workforce to more easily access business applications has reduced attrition rates.

1. It attracts talent

Even before the pandemic, many employees preferred flexible work hours. Now, it has become mandatory. Over 60% of employees would choose a workplace that allows work from home even if it pays less.

2. Employees are more productive and satisfied (Automation)

digital workplace productivity

By leveraging automation tools within a digital workplace platform, repetitive and time-consuming tasks can be automated, freeing up valuable time for employees to focus on higher-value work. This seamless integration streamlines processes reduces errors, and enhances productivity, allowing teams to achieve more in less time. Installing social media tools for internal interaction, for example, encourages communication and satisfaction.

3. It retains employees

We all know how important employee retention is. Acquiring a new employee during this time is tough and expensive. Onboarding online is also unchartered territory for most. So, if a strategy helped retain employees, why wouldn’t organizations invest in it?

4. It improves communication

Instant messaging is a hero today. Emails are becoming obsolete because instant communication leads to faster work and better interaction. So, when such communication tools are introduced, collaboration automatically gets better. This leads to an overall improvement in employee experience.

5. It reduces operating costs

A digital workplace does not really need physical infrastructure. The amount of money you spend on keeping things running (IT infrastructure, resources, travel, telecommunication, etc.) will be much less than traditional methods.

6. It helps increase revenue

Putting efficiency, employee retention, reduced operating costs, and more productivity together will show in your revenue. One of the biggest benefits, in fact, of a digital ecosystem is the increase in revenue. A few apps also help identify upselling and cross-selling opportunities.

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7. You will reach the market faster

When it comes to development and project completion, the biggest concern we hear is that of delays. Projects can easily run for months and get delayed due to multiple reasons. Engaging in digital transformation gives you the tools to research, develop, and test products quickly. This is why you will see a significant drop in the time-to-market, making the employees and users happy just the same.

8. It facilitates innovation

There’s so much that employees can do in the digital workplace model! Through no-code platforms, they are free to get their creative juices flowing. Customization and innovation are easier because they are less time-consuming and quick to implement.

9. It increases agility

When someone asks, “Why should you shift to the digital workplace?” The immediate answer is, “Because it is agile.”

The shift comes with the tools to make business changes and employee behaviors more flexible and agile.

10. It improves customer experience

Catering to customer needs and concerns is easier for employees in the digital workplace. This is because all the necessary information is easily available. They can serve the customers in a much better and more agile manner.

11. Avoid switching between apps

A digital workplace brings everything together in one centralized hub, eliminating the need for app-switching. It streamlines workflows, improves efficiency, and allows employees to focus on their core tasks. The digital workplace revolutionizes how organizations work without the burden of constant app development and integration.

Challenges of Digital Workplace

With every new innovation comes a new set of challenges. Similarly, adopting a digital workplace has its own challenges for businesses to conquer. The business’s level of operation, agility, and efficiency enables you to overcome and use it as an opportunity and not a hindrance.  

Data privacy and security concerns

Data is being moved to the cloud for employees to work efficiently in a digital workplace. So, while making it essential for employees to access critical business data from wherever they are, there is also a need to maintain high data privacy.

Complexity

The new tools and technologies will frequently cause changes in workplaces. Therefore, it is difficult and very complex for employees to become familiar with these tools regularly, which could impact productivity.

Disengagement of employees

Employees who work remotely may feel isolated and disconnected from their workplace because there is no physical interaction.

Impact on productivity

It is normal to see decreased productivity after implementing the digital workplace, as employees may need time to adjust to the changes. However, after a few weeks, productivity will increase depending on how well and quickly you adapt to the changes.

A lack of coordination and organizational silos

Silos result in a lack of coordination between teams within the organization, which decreases productivity and makes an organization resistant to change.

Steps to Create a Digital Workplace

Implementing the digital workplace effectively is the key to transforming the employee experience successfully. To do so, you must understand what to do and how it works. Below are a few steps that will help you strategize digital workplace strategy & get you started:

1. Check where you are currently

Assessing the current status of the work culture will help present a roadmap. Note how your employees work at the moment and how you need to change that. This assessment will help you choose the tools required to transform into a digital workplace.

2. Work on the strategy

Based on your findings in step 1, sketch a strategy with objectives and priorities. The goal should be to get the most out of this transformation and to improve business value.

3. Choose the technologies needed

Now is the time to shortlist all the digital tools and technologies you need. Make sure you refer to our toolkit to get started.

4. Provide guidance and training

This is a new experience for all team members. The shift may need a certain amount of time and training, especially if new technologies are being introduced. Communicate with your employees and provide the required training.

5. Analyze and improve

analysis

Just like everything else, the digital workplace needs continuous assessment and improvement. Performance metrics will help understand what’s working and what isn’t. You can iterate and implement it accordingly.

The right time to act was yesterday. The second best time is now!

Indicators to determine the success of Digital Workplace strategy

There are a few key indicators you can look for to determine whether a digital workplace is successful or not. It includes the appropriate choice of digital tools, how they are implemented, and how frequently they are used. Also, the following points must be analyzed to determine the success of the digital workplace-

  • A rise in productivity and efficiency among employees.
  • Increased levels of employee engagement.
  • Use of digital workforce platforms and whether or not the cloud has increased flexibility and coordination.
  • All or most of the menial tasks have been eliminated.
  • The ability to attract and keep top talent has improved.

Digital Workplace – Takeaway

Having a digital workplace strategy is crucial for boosting productivity and enhancing employee engagement and satisfaction. Due to the current pandemic, most businesses are looking for innovative ways to maintain their competitive advantage while keeping up with market trends. The worldwide investment in digital transformation will nearly double by the year 2024.

In recent times, due to the pandemic, we saw the historical shift from a traditional working model to a modern all-tech workplace which has helped employees to achieve the perfect work-life balance. It is almost certain that the ‘Work From Home’ environment will continue and will evolve in to hybrid work culture. According to Mckinsey, by the year 2025, more than 20% of the workforce will work virtually. The future lies within Digital workplace. Also, According to the survey, 58% of the employees said that their productivity increased by hybrid work.

Quixy is here to help you adopt the digital workplace without breaking a sweat. Begin your journey towards streamlined operations and tailored apps – all with the simplicity of our platform. Get started today to harness the potential of automation. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q. What metrics & KPIs measure digital workplace success?

Organizations should track metrics like adoption rate, engagement level, collaboration metrics, knowledge sharing, employee feedback, task completion time, content utilization, mobile access, security, compliance, and return on investment (ROI) to assess the performance and impact of their digital workplace platform. Analyzing these metrics allows organizations to make data-driven decisions, drive continuous improvement, and optimize their digital workplace’s overall effectiveness.

Q. How does a digital workplace enhance collaboration?

A digital workplace enhances collaboration by providing a centralized platform where employees can easily communicate, share information, and work together. Features like real-time messaging, document collaboration, and shared workspaces foster seamless collaboration regardless of physical location or time zone. It breaks down communication barriers, encourages cross-team collaboration, and enables employees to collaborate more effectively, leading to increased innovation, faster decision-making, and improved overall productivity.

Q. What are the benefits of a digital workplace platform?

A digital workplace platform offers a range of benefits, including streamlined communication, improved knowledge sharing, enhanced productivity, and increased employee engagement. It provides a centralized hub where employees can access tools, information, and resources, eliminating the need for app-switching. Employees can work more efficiently and collaboratively with features like task management, document sharing, and collaborative workspaces. Additionally, a digital workplace promotes flexibility, enables remote work, and fosters a sense of connectivity and community among employees.

Q. How can a digital workplace improve productivity?

A digital workplace can improve productivity by simplifying workflows, reducing manual tasks, and providing easy access to information and resources. With a centralized platform, employees can quickly find and share documents, collaborate in real-time, and track project progress. Automation features further optimize processes, freeing up time for employees to focus on value-added activities. A digital workplace streamlines work processes and enhances overall productivity by providing seamless communication channels, knowledge-sharing capabilities, and efficient task management.

Q. Does a digital workplace support remote work?

Absolutely! A digital workplace is designed to support remote work. It enables employees to access the platform from any location, providing a consistent work environment regardless of physical presence in the office. Remote teams can collaborate seamlessly through communication tools, shared documents, and virtual meetings. A digital workplace ensures that remote workers have the same access to information, resources, and collaboration opportunities as their in-office counterparts, fostering inclusivity and enabling organizations to embrace flexible work arrangements while maintaining productivity and team cohesion.

Future trends in digital workplace technology include the rise of no-code/low-code platforms, enabling employees to build and customize digital workplace solutions without extensive coding knowledge. This empowers non-technical users to create tailored workflows and applications to meet their specific needs. We can also anticipate advancements in artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) integration, enabling intelligent automation, predictive analytics, and personalized experiences within the digital workplace.

What is the future of digital workplace?

The future of digital workplaces involves more AI integration, advanced cybersecurity, and continued remote work support. It’ll evolve to better cater to changing work patterns and technologies.

What are the benefits of a digital workplace?

A digital workplace boosts collaboration, efficiency, and flexibility. It empowers employees to work from anywhere, streamlines processes, and enhances decision-making.

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