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The Digital Workplace

Think. Share. Do. Transform your employee experience.

The digital workplace encompasses all the technologies people use to get work done in today’s workplace – both the ones in operation and the ones yet to be implemented. Learn how Deloitte can help drive your innovation agenda through the effective implementation of your digital workplace.

Evolution of the workplace

The widespread proliferation of information technology is changing the ways in which employees connect, collaborate and communicate.

This change accelerated over the last 30 years due to the emergence of three fundamental trends:

  • Changing workforce: As the baby boomers retire, knowledge is leaving the company, increasing the need to capture it. On the other side the new generation of workers is very IT savvy and expect to have flexible easy to use tools just as they have in their private life.
  • Information overload: Information is still growing at exponential rates and employees can’t find what they need, even with technology advances.
  • The need for speed: With the rapid pace of today’s work environment, employees increasingly need to work faster and collaborate more effectively to get their jobs done.

As workplace demographics continue to shift, employers struggle to meet the varying needs of a multi-generational workforce. As the use of the Internet and mobile devices grows, the pace of change continues to accelerate. These changes are further exacerbated by ongoing demands to increase productivity and cut costs, making it harder for employees to meet market expectations. Together, these trends are reshaping the work environment.

The digital workplace defined

The digital workplace can best be considered as the natural evolution of the workplace. This evolved workplace encompasses all the technologies people use to get work done in today’s workplace – both the ones in operation and the ones yet to be implemented.

It ranges from your HR applications and core business applications to e-mail, instant messaging and enterprise social media tools and virtual meeting tools.

Because most organizations already use many of these components, you generally do not have to build the digital workplace from the ground up. In fact, if your staff respond to e-mails from smartphones, check their pay stubs online or digitally enter a sales opportunity, you may be closer to operating a digital workplace than you think.

Yet even in cases where new technologies are required, the benefits increasingly outweigh the costs. As the workplace continues to evolve, and employee expectations shift, organizations that do not embrace the digital workplace risk falling behind.

More organizations are committing IT budget on supporting digital workplace strategies that promise to deliver measurable returns. This trend is only set to accelerate as employees increasingly choose to forge productive business relationships beyond natural work groups in an effort to enhance knowledge sharing across the organization.

To support these outcomes, you need to provide employees with the tools they require to collaborate, communicate and connect with each other and your back-end systems. You need to coordinate your technology groups and investments to avoid the traps of siloed implementations and disparate ownership.

You should adopt clear roadmaps to ensure your digital workplace delivers measurable business value while mitigating risks and adhering to compliance requirements.

The digital framework

While there are no hard and fast rules governing the design of a digital workplace, leading practices do exist. The following digital workplace framework, for instance, provides organizations with a tool to understand their current digital workplace and identify areas of opportunity to support a better way of doing business by helping you think holistically about the tools you use in your workplace.

The digital workplace framework includes four layers covering the following components:

  • Use: collaborate, communicate, connect: The digital workplace is all about the employees’ ability to do their job by collaborating, communicating and connecting with others. The goal is to forge productive business relationships within and beyond natural work groups and to enable knowledge sharing across the organization.
  • Technology: the digital toolbox: Technology enables the digital workplace. Each organization already has a digital workplace toolbox with different tools. Depending on your industry and business needs, the tools needed to support your digital workplace will vary. The key is to adopt the right tools for your employees to do their jobs.
  • Control: governance, risk and compliance: The effective use of technology in the digital workplace is underpinned by appropriate controls. This means you must support the digital workplace with appropriate governance structures and management processes. Information flow and use must also comply with your organization’s policies and industry regulations.
  • Business drivers: measurable business value: As with any core initiative, it is essential for business needs to drive the digital workplace. To deliver the necessary benefits, the direction of your organization should guide the direction of your digital workplace.

  • Determine the state of the digital workplace in your market segment and your competitors
  • Define a digital workplace strategy aligned with your business strategy and needs
  • Build a business case to support a digital workplace strategy and implementation
  • Assess the maturity of your digital workplace and determine your areas of focus
  • Align your technology initiatives and information management needs to deliver a holistic digital workplace
  • Deliver your technology initiatives (large or small) with the employee experience in mind
  • Train and roll out your digital workplace initiatives to drive adoption
  • Identify the appropriate governance models to manage and measure your digital workplace
  • Understand your multi-generational workforce to tailor your digital workplace
  • Design a virtualized workforce and provide them with the tools they need to be more agile, responsive and positioned for growth
  • Design change management and communication plans to help drive adoption and long-term transformation
  • Understand the risk and compliance issues
  • Can help protect the information flow in your digital workplace
  • Can help you identify qualified activities and create documentation to leverage available federal, provincial and local tax incentives.
The Deloitte Difference

Deloitte is able to help you deliver your digital workplace As One. We function as a unified team and deliver the culmination of individual action into collective power. We collaborate to achieve extraordinary results – together. Together – we can deliver your digital workplace As One.

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