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People and IT have been important factors during the pandemic to keep businesses going. Being able to connect, collaborate and continue through these changing times has been critical. Although, it has not been without its problems. If systems, software, support, and infrastructure are not fully aligned to your staff needs, disengagement and frustration can be the result. Outlined are some practical areas to consider when reviewing your IT strategies, resulting in positive employee engagement.

It’s probably safe to say that your company has a focus and improvement process on the customer journey, and over the years has been re-reviewed and refined to meet changing times and expectations. But are you reviewing your employees’ experience with the same well thought out evolving procedures?

It is not hard to see the impact the Covid-19 lockdown has had on us all, the working world as we know it has changed, and research suggests that hybrid and homeworking will continue. What if technology could be the answer to many of the challenges we have all faced, and has the capability to change the employee IT experience been for the good?

Having the right tools and access is an essential part of any job, a spanner could drive a nail in a wall, but the outcome and satisfaction would not be as good as a hammer. The same goes for the IT equipment and systems you use, ensuring that it is the best fit for the function and individual can add to a positive experience and outcomes for the user.

Where can IT engage or disengage your employees?

  • Devices
  • Collaboration
  • Communication
  • Software
  • Access to servers
  • Access to Intranet
  • Data storage
  • Support
  • Processes
  • Reporting
  • Digitalisation
  • Inclusion
  • Training

Things to consider

Employee devices are essential, but have you thought about the way it is used for each individual or team? Size is not everything!! Having one that has the right specification to run the software is one area to consider but what about other needs. Someone that is going to be traveling may consider a lighter weight a high priority, whereas someone fully office based (home or physically in office) may put a higher priority on screen size.

An individual’s physical needs are also key. As the need for high power internal processors has decreased as more applications are cloud based, reinvesting the savings into larger screens, keyboards, and other accessories making life easier and more comfortable is one way to add to positive engagement. Essentially, over specification costs money, under specification costs efficiency and engagement.

There is nothing more frustrating than not being able to log into systems, processes for data sharing not working and support for IT issues not being efficient. Also frustrating is finding that you have gaps in your knowledge of applications, that normally would have been answered over a coffee in the office and knowing you must phone or email to get that same help. Being able to bounce ideas informally over lunch, having to chase data for reports as they are not centrally controlled or stored not only wastes an employee’s time but also increases disengagement. There are solutions to all these issues in IT. Having IT support that works for every area including for home workers, quickly and efficiently, centralising data by making it easily accessed by those that need it, collaboration tools, digitalisation of business process and targeted training.

As the road map to end lockdown has been announced, now is an opportunity to look at our internal IT systems. Is everything aligned for the business and employee’s needs?

Thought needs to be focused on the future, the possible changing working environment to a hybrid model of home and office, and if your systems will be efficient and reliable as they need to be. We need to reflect on the lessons learnt from lockdown as well as your future developments. Frank discussions and surveys with employees allows them time to express their experiences, feelings and vision of IT in all areas, is an easy way to engage everyone. The inclusion of staff in these processes has a powerful effect. Not only will you have real life data to drive your IT strategy by clearly knowing what engages and what does not, but your staff will also feel engaged, knowing their voice is heard.

A win-win situation for all

There are many ways in which Auditel consulting can help. From an independent survey and report, highlighting the strong and weaker engagement aspects of your IT systems, to a total review, identifying areas, road map to include in your IT strategy and full implementation or any part of.

Article by: Carole O’Brien

As seen in Issue 10 of The Bottom Line