Many businesses are feeling compelled to consider a significant change in the way they and their people work operationally. This has been brought about as a result of people wanting to have more of a say in when, where and how they perform their daily tasks, and how they achieve their organisational objectives.
Largely, this change has been made possible because technology has made rapid advancements in the areas of connectivity, security, devices and applications.
These have all become more mobile-centric, allowing people to stay connected regardless of location, while still retaining a good user experience.
But the transition that businesses need to go through to a benefit from a more agile and flexible workforce requires more than just technology to make it a success.
Technology should be the enabler of the change that is desired - but not the reason for change.
When considering a more agile working environment, it is crucial to ensure that the reasons for change revolve around the primary business drivers.
All businesses will have a strategy and a defined set of objectives, such as improving collaboration or increasing NPS (net promoter score), both designed to improve the customer experience and increase loyalty. Other key objectives of a more financial nature include reducing costs, driving productivity, and increasing profitability.
Softer metrics should also be taken into account. It’s been well documented that adopting flexible working equates to happier employees, which in turn drives higher discretional effort, which makes for happier customers, which can in turn increase profitability and boost growth.
So how can businesses move most painlessly to a flexible, more agile working environment? At Olive, we believe it doesn’t have to be all or nothing. The key to success is to be clear as to what you want to change and why, and then align the program to this.
Gathering information in an audit-style fashion upfront is vital: How are employees working today? What are the working habits of those who are office based and those who are based remotely (if there are any)? How many desks do you have? How many meeting rooms? How many offices? What are the occupancy figures like for these areas?
Once these have been answered, best practice for understanding end-user requirements is:
1. Share the vision and strategy: ensure that the vision for agile working in the organisation is agreed and clearly articulated from the senior leadership team.
2. Get leaders aligned and engaged: work closely with managers within the business, and get outside help to equip them with the skills, knowledge and confidence they need to embrace a new way of working.
3. Ensure employees are engaged: the change needs to be led by managers but it needs to be accepted and endorsed by employees. For it to be embedded in the organisation, early employee engagement is a critical success factor.
4. Regularly review and evolve: not everything will be ‘right first time’ and it may not be possible to do everything immediately, so set clear goals and review regularly, gauge what’s changed, and make adjustments as an ongoing process.
If firms can introduce some of this rigor and strategic approach to their planning, they will be well placed to succeed in the new, mobile-centric world of work.
The BYOD train has well and truly left the station and is in full motion in today’s world of business. Whether it’s to make yourself more efficient, a fashion statement or you simply have a mild technology fetish (unfortunately I fit into the latter category) we are all bringing more devices into our work place.
The thing about BYOD that interests me is how fickle we are as human beings and how rapidly the world of mobile can change. Just two/ three years ago the office I work in were all Blackberry mad and in such a short time we are now collectively scoffing down whatever Apple throws at us! RIM has experienced a bit of a recovery recently but what went so drastically wrong that we all decided to one day change our allegiance?
Now, I’m not particularly pro Apple, or pro any manufacturer for that matter. I buy Apple products because they work well, are easy to navigate and do everything I need them to. I have bought my mother an iPad because I know after the initial lesson of how to get around it, use the app store and download content I won’t be spending my evenings as her personal tech support guru.
This leads me nicely onto a set of predictions in the Mobile market over the next 12 months. CSS Insight has released a set of predictions for the next year that will likely ruffle a few feathers! They have predicted that iPhones market share will peak in 2014 and as the devices become more commonplace they will start to appeal less to trend setters. They also reckon the most innovative mobile phone experiences will come from new platforms like Blackberry OS 10 and the new boys Firefox OS and Tizen. Other companies to shake up the market are expected to be Amazon, Facebook and Google.
The iPhone may be the flagship device in the market right now but things can change...quickly. As a consumer i’ll be buying whatever I deem to work best for me at the time of purchase. Apple or otherwise. If you have a prediction for the next 12 months in the Mobile market I would like to hear from you.
Why is creating a mobile platform strategy so important? A mobile platform is not just the individual device or operating system (OS) it runs, but it encompasses an ecosystem that includes the end user, the IT infrastructure and the app environment—all contained in the most cost-effective, manageable and secure package. This definition provides the basis for creating a mobile platform strategy.
Authors: Curtis Hartmann
Mobile devices. Mobile storage. Mobile connectivity. Our culture today is consumed with the idea of mobility – and for good reasons. Relying upon the freedom of mobile communications has powered the productivity behind our daily lives and our businesses. In such a mobile world, we might be surprised to find how much fur...