With the rise of remote work, the way that various people work has changed. The term workplace no longer refers just to an office or physical location. Now, the workplace is digital, with remote workers interacting digitally. For IT departments specifically, it is important to think about the digital workplace.
The Meteoric Rise of the Digital Workplace
To put the importance of the digital workplace into perspective, consider some figures from Verizon Business from a 2020 survey. In the survey:
- 86% of companies worldwide said they feel that the physical and digital workplaces will coexist after the pandemic.
- 78% also expect remote working to increase.
- 35% recognize security being a potential obstacle to digital work.
The report also confirmed a connection between productivity and digital work. It found 52% of businesses with digital workplaces saw a boost in productivity. This compared to just 40% for businesses without that strategy.
More Than the Digital Workplace
While IT workers have a digital workplace, this is not their only one. As control over the pandemic fluctuates, Deloitte argues that there are three overlapping types of workplaces.
The physical workplace is where a worker is physically present. Traditionally, this would be an office, but now, it is typically a home. This used to be the main workplace, and it still guides most people’s mental images of work environments.
Then we have two different digital workplaces, the shared and personal ones.
The personal digital workplace refers to the tools and tech that each member of the IT department uses themselves. It frequently combines personal devices with business-owned technologies.
The shared digital workplace is the various pieces of technology that let teams interact with each other. This is where people work on collaborative IT projects.
Keys to Successful Digital Workplaces
The Verizon Business report highlighted several keys to maximizing strategies for digital work. These include working smarter, such as the use of collaboration tools like document sharing and whiteboards. The report also highlighted the importance of integration and simplicity as well as that of security. All these factors should be at the forefront of IT departments.
Meanwhile, Forbes offers its insights into successful digital workplaces. These include the idea that using as few applications as necessary is ideal, which will reduce costs. It can also minimize the risks of incompatibilities or overlapping functionalities. Of course, it also lessens the need to train employees and the IT department to manage and troubleshoot programs.
Forbes also highlights how switching between various applications and programs can reduce productivity, up to 80%. Thus, IT departments should take this information to heart. They should look for applications with many functionalities.