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The Way We Work: How Technology Has Radically Altered Our Work Processes

The Way We Work: How Technology Has Radically Altered Our Work Processes
From Recruiter - August 11, 2017

A lot of attention gets paid to where we work, whether inimpressive office complexes or at ourdining room tables.The rise of mobile and the advent of collaborative and productivity-oriented software have opened up all kinds of possibilities for enabling teams to engage from wherever they are. People have simply grown accustomed to working from anywhere.

But this discussion about where we work doesnt matter nearly as much as the less widespread discussion of howwe work. That is the real problem companies are (or should be) trying to solve. IBM, for example, has made headlines by asking workers to come into the regional office in an effort to drive more active and spontaneous collaboration. Indeed, many organizationsoperate according to the belief that collaboration occurs more readily when employees encounter each other in the halls and around the water cooler.

However, our work processes have evolved to the point where collaboration with some sort of distributed team is virtually inevitable. Today, work centers on how companies engagenot only with their employees but also with their entire ecosystems, including team members working across the globe, project groups comprised of individuals from multiple offices, andcustomers and partners based elsewhere. This is a fact of life now, part and parcel of doing business. Companies must determine how to facilitate authentic interactions between disparate parties in order to foster innovation and fuel growth and profitability.

Getting Personal

Data shows that personal connections dont simply disappear when one team member is in Silicon Valley and another is in Kansas. In fact, Gallup reportsthat employees who spend 60-80 percent of their time away from the officeand, presumably, away from their teams as wellhave the highest rates of engagement.

Many credit millennials with the changes tothe ways we work and connect with our colleagues. Regardless of who is responsible, new workforce expectations require new approaches to work. As Accenture CIO Andrew Wilson said in an interview with Silicon Republic, [T]odays digital worker comes preconfigured and pre-trained. To fight that kind of DNA would be silly. It would be expending effort you dont need to expend.

Wilsons sentiment is on the money.Employees must be given the tools they need to support their new work processes. The desire to be visible and to collaborate and communicate across all facets of the company marks a radical shift in how we work. It doesnt mean everything has to happen in person, nor is progress guaranteed just because companies implement fancy tools. Its all about how businesses utilize thetools at their disposal.



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