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The top 3 productivity transitions you need to consider in a mobile and cloud world

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Brett Belding |Managing Principal Consulting, End User Computing

Brett Belding |Managing Principal Consulting, End User Computing

I’m a firm believer that ‘work’ is a thing you do and not a place you go. I don’t go to work; I work on things.

I may work at home, at the office, at a client’s site, or at an airport. This is not a new phenomenon; field sales and services people have had flexible workspaces for as long as their professions have existed. They are truly the mobile worker. They don’t work at the same location every day, and they represent a large percentage of the global workforce.

The big difference, today, is that technology has largely caught up with the needs of the digital business employee. This mobile and cloud architecture wave is causing three major productivity transitions inside every company – cultural, technical, and operational.

1. Cultural transition

A company’s culture is the foundation of their value proposition. Culture is difficult to change over time, primarily because the profit (or loss) of the firm is intrinsically tied to its culture. It’s for this reason that changing your culture is an absolute necessity to stay competitive in the marketplace.

The hardest change is adjusting how you manage and measure your knowledge workers. As a leader, you need to measure your employees based on the quality of their contributions, not based on how many hours they sit in a specific chair. Being present doesn’t mean you’re being productive.

2. Technical transition

In order to drive the cultural transition forward, you have to re-imagine the business’s productivity experience from the end-user’s perspective.  Trust me – if you haven’t done this yet, your employees surely have. You need to deliver a solution that makes it easy to create, edit, sync, and share documents on any device and across companies or business units.

This solution needs to respect your specific security and regulatory constraints without adversely affecting the user experience. You can’t get this right without constant interaction with, and feedback from, your user base. Above all, these tools must be intuitive. If they aren’t, you’ll struggle with adoption and support.

3. Operational transition

Support is often overlooked when planning transitions, and that typically leads to unhappy users and overwhelmed operations teams. As your culture and your technology transitions to the new mobile and cloud model, your operations approach must change as well. You should first focus on self-service and automation.

The combination of these is critical to reducing your operations team’s workload and simplifying set-up and problem resolution for end users. A trend we’re seeing today is an implementation of the ‘Genius Bar’ approach. Created and popularised by Apple, the key to this approach is hiring a small number of experts who are available primarily by scheduled appointments. This usually augments the traditional phone-based Level 1 help desk.

Building the productivity experience

Moving to a mobile and cloud architecture drives cultural, technical, and support transitions across every business. Organisations who make this transition start with a cohesive vision of the productivity experience. They then build an understanding of the ‘as-is’ and ‘to-be’ states for each area of the architecture.

Finally, they build a roadmap of technology projects, which will lead them to the desired end state. We’re experiencing one of the largest transitions in computing history, and this approach is the key to navigating it successfully.

 

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