As we enter the new year AND a new decade, we expect the last few months will have been a time for reflection and your business will be adjusting it’s goals and the strategy towards reaching them.

There’s one key focus area for many of the companies that are approaching us – they have the goal in mind to become a ‘modern workplace’.

So, what is a modern workplace?

It’s more than a buzzword – A modern workplace is that of a business that continually evolves, innovates, adapts to change, adopts a collaborative and communicative internal strategy and also offers a flexible environment. These businesses stay up-to-date, their employees are happy and productive, working practices are efficient and ultimately, they remain competitive.

Employees are beginning to expect to work anywhere, on any device, securely and these ‘workplace norms’ are slowly becoming extinct:

• Email as the primary tool of communication
• 9-to-5 work schedule
• Traditional offices

Simple steps you can easily implement to begin your journey to becoming a modern workplace:

1. Modern devices and technology

Technology and tools are advancing at a rapid pace and providing the right tools to do the job well increases motivation, productivity, and engagement. Not using modern technology will prevent your business from getting ahead.

Another largely important factor to consider with this is properly training your employees to use technology and tools and caring about their continued development. Employees want to feel valued and continually investing in their workspace and their development benefits both the employee and the business.

2. Remote working

Most employees see having the ability to work remotely as a great benefit as it introduces a more flexible working schedule and it allows for better work / life balance. With new software always evolving it’s now easier than ever to have a remote team but still be in constant communication.

Applications like Skype for Business and OneDrive allow for people to stay in touch easier. OneDrive is a cloud-based storage system which allows users to upload files and access from any location. This makes getting information immediately possible from anywhere and increases productivity.

3. Collaboration tools

‘Collaboration’ in the workplace is people and tools working together, seamlessly, to get the best for your business. One of the most popular tools out there for businesses looking to improve collaboration is Office 365.

Office 365’s online services let teams share and edit documents, schedule meetings, and collaborate in real time. Applications like Microsoft Teams provide a central network for teams to communicate and work on projects together.

4. Transparency and open communication

Transitioning to a modern workplace can have its challenges and open communication is often a concern – particularly where many members of staff regularly work remotely. Staff want to know what is going on within the company, what decisions are being made and also want regular feedback, praise or support where necessary. Open communication channels are a big step forward for companies.

As mentioned, Microsoft Teams and Skype are great communication tools. There are also group collaboration and social media tools that may prove beneficial. A private social media network for a business such as Yammer or Slack may be a tool to consider in 2020. These allow for private groups be created and is monitored, e.g. there may be an idea group, where all staff can contribute. Modern workers want to feel valued and want their voice to be heard. Given the opportunity, collaborative working, employee engagement levels and retention will rise.

Starting the journey to becoming a modern workplace is an excellent decision for any business that wishes to grow and succeed in 2020. Invest in your employees and the technology they use. Adapt, change and innovate. The outcome is a productive and efficient workforce. Talk to one of the team today to find out more about how we can support your business on this journey: 01889 228439


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