We live and work in an age of rapid technological innovation. Devices line our workstations, homes, pockets and technology, as a result, is changing everything – especially when it comes to the way we work.
In fact, out-of-date communications infrastructure and limited investment in new technology is holding back the introduction of new collaboration technologies that employees so desperately want to use, resulting in employees increasingly bringing their own devices to work. And of course, this is bringing certain risks to the fore for many large organisations around the world, including South Africa – a digital dislocation.
Independent research suggests that more work is needed to reduce digital dislocation in the workplace. The study found that employees feel disconnected due to lack of face-to-face interactions with colleagues. IT decision makers are complaining about time wasted trying to contact colleagues and as a result, they want more innovative communication technology – to be able to share information simply and in quicker time.
As the mobile workforce continues to grow, it is easy for employees to get trapped inside specialist departments and divisions or drop off the map while working out of the office. However, staying connected has never been so important and is vital to an organisation’s success. The solution to digital dislocation lies in the use of effective collaboration tools. As an example, organisations can look to embrace video to help them communicate more effectively with their workers. Coupled with the proliferation of Cloud computing and mobile employees can share information and make faster, better decisions. These developments can help to prevent such ‘digital dislocation’.
While it is obvious that there is a need and demand for collaboration services, many businesses have not built a strategy for implementation. Facilitating these new technologies effectively can be achieved through a Cloud computing platform. IT managers should look at cloud services to help stretch their budgets and replace outdated legacy systems – to introduce collaborative tools. Organisations that use Cloud technology for collaborative purposes can benefit significantly – not only in cost savings, but also in employee satisfaction – breaking the digital dislocation issue by offering employees the tools they need to work together in a volatile market that requires quick turn arounds and sound decision to be made.
Organisations need to improve communication and collaboration to drive growth and keep ahead of competitor trends in a rapidly changing world. They have to make it easier for all employees to collaborate – whether they’re in the office, working from home, at clients’ sites or on the move.
Kevin Hardy is the Managing Director at BT in Africa.