What Kind of Digital Workplace Do Employees Want?
When businesses invest in the digital workplace it has a very direct impact on employees’ day-to-day work and their overall employee experience. Provide employees with complicated, disjointed and difficult to understand applications and the result will be inefficiency and frustration. Deliver the kind of digital workplace that employees love, and see their effectiveness, productivity and engagement soar.
So what is it that employees want from a digital workplace?
8 Characteristics Employees Want From Their Digital Workplace
Given the chance to design a digital workplace from scratch, employees will look for eight key characteristics that resolve the problems they experience with their current workplace tools:
- Simple: One place to go, not multiple places.
- Efficient: Able to get things done effortlessly without interruption.
- Powerful: Capable of doing anything they need it to do.
- Findable: They can find what they need.
- Flexible: Access anytime, anywhere and on any device.
- Relevant: Things that make sense for them.
- Intelligent: The digital workplace already knows them.
- Intuitive: Easy to use.
Let’s explore each of these in more detail.
1. Simple: One Place to Go, Not Multiple Places
All too often employees have to go to multiple applications to find information, complete transactions and get work done. A poor digital workplace can be a series of silos and isolated applications where employees end up wasting huge amounts of time. Remembering the right application and its password, and then navigating a workspace that has seven windows open, drains productivity. Information and application overload also leave employees feeling overwhelmed.
Employees want simplicity. They want one place where they can start a process or task, reach an application with Single Sign-On, and do what they need to do.
2. Efficient: Able to Get Things Done Effortlessly Without Interruption
Having multiple siloed systems is highly inefficient for completing processes. Employees want to enter one application and be confident that it will efficiently and effortlessly deliver an end-to-end process without interruption. They should expect workflows, notifications, visibility of progress and automation. They should not endure fragmentation, bottlenecks, information black holes, and inaccessible systems.
A digital workplace solution like Kissflow, with its flexible workflow and automation, comes as a breath of fresh air. Employees love having a single go-to system handling multiple processes from start to finish.
3. Powerful: Capable of Doing Anything They Need It to Do
Employees want technology that helps them work, solve problems and be more productive. They don’t want technology that hinders them or puts unnecessary limits on them. A good digital workplace should be powerful — it should be capable of (almost) anything employees need it to do.
Employees should have the ability to manage, automate and then change their own processes. They should be able to quickly set up project spaces that keep everybody updated and facilitate discussions. They should be able to see and plan their actions for the day.
4. Findable: You Can Find What You Need
Employees waste hours looking for the information or documents they need to carry out their role. They scour their inbox, wade through file shares or browse the intranet, only to have to go and ask a colleague anyway.
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Poor findability wastes thousands of dollars every year, yet what rarely goes acknowledged is how the multiple silos caused by app proliferation contribute to the problem. When information and files are spread over numerous systems, they’re impossible to find. When you have just one system like Kissflow that handles the bulk of everyday work, findability is dramatically improved.
5. Flexible: Access Anytime, Anywhere, on Any Device
The current pandemic has torpedoed the argument that work can only be carried out at a fixed location. For several years, employees have been demanding flexibility in how they carry out their work, regardless of time, location or device. With the new emphasis on remote work, a highly flexible workplace that can be accessed from anywhere without compromising either the user experience or cutting corners on security is the only option going forward.
6. Relevant: Things That Make Sense for Them
A strong digital workplace needs to be highly relevant to employees and cover the processes and working practices they carry out every day. It needs to start with how employees actually want to work, not the way technology forces them to work through a “one size fits all” approach.
A strength of a product like Kissflow is its ability to be relevant to every division, function, and line of business. Because it is so flexible, businesses can automate both complex and simple processes, with all the variation that is needed right down to the team level. The digital workplace becomes relevant to every employee.
7: Intelligent: The Digital Workplace Already Knows Me
As the devices and apps we use in our non-working lives get smarter and more personalized, expectations around the digital workplace have increased. Employees want an intelligent digital workplace that knows who they are and anticipates what they want. As AI advances, these expectations will only increase.
Hyper-personalization with relevant content, the aggregation of reminders and notifications in one place, and intelligent suggestions for items of interest are all elements of the smart digital workplace that employees will want to use.
8. Intuitive: Easy to Use — Don’t Make Me Think
Employees don’t have the time or the patience to decipher what to do next due to a poorly designed interface. Web usability expert Steve Krug wrote “Don’t make me think” 20 years ago and it still rings true today. Intuitive interfaces that are built around the user and feel familiar are critical. Employees want an effortless experience in the digital workplace.
Let’s Deliver the Digital Workplace Employees Actually Want
The digital workplace is important. Employees want and deserve an experience that helps them through the working day and supports their flow of work, not one that sets up barriers and blockages. Let’s deliver a digital workplace that employees actually want, not one that’s fragmented and causes frustration. The benefits that come from this will be felt at every level of your organization.
About the Author
Kissflow is the first unified digital workplace for organizations to manage all of their work on a single platform. Kissflow is used by over 10,000 customers across 160 countries, including more than 50 Fortune 500 companies.