– Originally written by Natasha Bougourd, copywriter on behalf of Exterity –
The pandemic has changed a lot for businesses, whether that’s their customers’ buying behaviour or product demands.
One of the biggest challenges for many businesses was the shift to home working. In March 2020, companies who hadn’t already implemented dedicated digital solutions scrabbled to adapt. Digital transformation was accelerated – McKinsey found that businesses sped up their digitisation by three to four years.
Digital solutions will be key to our business success in the office and beyond. Here, we cover some of the key ways you can use digital solutions to drive your business forwards.
Hybrid communication is key
2020 was the year of Zoom and Microsoft Teams. Whether we implemented them into the workplace for remote collaboration or we joined a Zoom quiz, video calls epitomised our year. Now that the work-from-home order has been lifted, it may be less essential to some businesses, but it’s still an invaluable tool.
The many businesses that have embraced flexible working will see the value in continuing to utilise these tools. There’s no better way to mimic in-person sessions than via a video call, and we know that this can keep remote employees engaged.
Our sporadic inability to travel for work has made many of us re-evaluate how necessary it is. If your North East-based business has clients in London that you used to visit, save precious resources by hosting online meetings. Reserve those trips across the country for critical reviews instead.
Drive performance with visibility
For employees coming into the office, there are ways you can use digital solutions to maximise performance. Displaying your company objectives on digital signage screens will help to motivate your staff. This works especially well if you have a large in-office sales or customer service teams who work to defined KPIs.
It also gives them an understanding of how their work contributes to the business’ overall goals. What’s more, when employee and business goals are shared with more senior staff members, people are more likely to achieve them. Sharing real-time data on screens around the office will keep your employees committed to meeting their key performance indicator (KPIs) and the company’s overall goals.
Blend business and pleasure
The true value of digital solutions during the pandemic was seen in how they enabled us to remain connected. The ability to chat via Microsoft Teams, for example, allowed us to feel close to our colleagues even as we were separated.
Injecting some fun into your solutions is a great way to keep your hybrid workforce engaged too. Whether that’s setting up a fun chat on Microsoft Teams where you host midday quizzes or sharing employees’ personal news on a dedicated intranet site, you can foster a great culture wherever your employees are.
Keep systems up to date for productivity gains
As well as implementing new digital solutions, chances are that your business has also updated its core systems in the past year. If not, perhaps it’s time to do so. A survey by Dell found out exactly how impactful good and bad technology is on your employees, and the results are stark.
Not only can employees achieve 37% more in a workday when the technology they rely on works well, but for every hour worked, they can save a huge 23 minutes. That equates to 15 hours in a 40-hour working week, highlighting how essential functional technology is to your workforce.
Outdated systems and hardware can hold up your employees, not only impacting their productivity but also their stress levels. The same study found that bad technology can double employee stress levels – with it being 30% more stressful than public singing. That says something!
The pandemic and subsequent work from home order accelerated business technology adoption in a way we’ve never seen before. This has been a silver lining of the past 18 months as businesses have implemented digital solutions. Whether your office is active once again or you’ve adopted a hybrid working model, you can improve performance through digital solutions.