Accelerating Digital Transformation
The day has finally arrived, and change is inevitable. All those who have a callous attitude towards change and transformation need to wake up now. If we had heeded to the week signals and early warnings that we heard about and ignored to see, the future would not be that different or challenging.
In this article, I would like to point out why we need to consider transformation as a key strategic push during these times, particularly when many people are working from home using their digital devices and other digital tools to get work done. The need for today is a complete roll-over to digital transformation and that is going to change the way we work, collaborate, plan, and execute our daily tasks, projects, and initiatives.
As leaders, it’s time to ask some tough questions such as:
- What are the current trends that are driving the digital transformation of the future of work?
- What latest technologies are shaping the future of work?
- How can the solutions providers in the technology space function in an advisory role and help organizations to incorporate digital transformation towards the future of work?
- What are some of the key challenges’ organizations may face while implementing their transformational changes?
- How to converge future technologies to enable re-designing the modern workspace that aligns with the newly emerging tasks for the workforce?
Asking these questions will enable leaders to make the digital transformation as their primary imperative for exploring new and innovative growth opportunities. Digitization is transforming the entire socio-technical system of-
Let’s look at these 3 dimensions of digitization in more detail.
Future work means autonomy of place, working hours, and time-off, a result-based culture, instead of the present culture. From a management perspective, there needs to be a re-enforcement of networking and dialog skills and a change from control to encouragement. When it comes to skills the focus should be on creativity, non-linear thinking, and entrepreneurship combined with clear-cut ICT (Information and Communication Technology) skills.
The organization would be seeing a lot of new nerds and child prodigies as decision-makers.
“When it comes to managing employee well-being, the companies Human Resources (HR) plays a vital part, particularly during times of transformation and change. They need to take take a fresh look at how business requirements can be met without harming employee interests.”
Rigid formal procedures that take a lot of time and resources to comply with should pave the way for a more collaborative effort to come out with group-specific robust policies and procedures keeping in mind the necessary regulations to abide with.
If HR can create social partnerships with various groups/divisions within the organization to come up with (co-create) new guidelines and norms it goes a long way in ensuring that everyone is treated with fairness keeping in mind the best interest of both the employer and the employee. Now we are talking about Work 4.0.
From the HR perspective let’s see what is changing:
- Digital Hiring – Today a lot of hiring is happing through social media to attract, assess, select, and hire candidates. We have algorithms scanning resumes and applications. Jobs can be booked through employment apps that are entirely digital and automated. They include processes such as conducting online assessments, signing contracts, employee insurance, payments, and invoicing.
- Smart Building – These are buildings designed and build in such a way that it has an impact on an individual’s well-being and help to reduce environmentally footprints. They would include things like smart lighting and temperature control, to door access and on-demand desk or meeting bookings
- New Job-skills and Descriptions – As humans delegate manual jobs to robots and machines we will need to learn and develop new skills in order to meet new job descriptions. Look out for roles such as Blockchain Analysts, AI trainers, Big Data Coaches, AI specialist and Machine Learning Engineer/Specialist, Data scientists, and so on.
- Digital Workforce and High-Value Tasks–Digital workers enhance an individual’s capability rather than replacing humans. They free-up an individual’s time to focus on high-value tasks. The technology that we are talking about here is VR/AR (Virtual Reality / Augmented Reality), Robotics, Intelligent Process Automation, RPA (Robotic Process Automation), Artificial Intelligence, and so on.
Today, while we are in the midst of a pandemic, WFH (Working From Home) has become the new normal. HR can attract better talents by offering tele-compute or WFH jobs. It helps companies source talent from any distance from within or outside the city, state, or country. Another advantage is people will take less sick-leave and be more productive. Also, companies can engage freelancers to work on specific projects thereby saving a lot of man-hours wasted on screening and shortlisting jobseekers.
Some people skills for the future are as shown below:
Organization and business units will need to look to automate repetitive tasks, to reduce costs, increase accuracy and auditability, and refocus human talent on higher-level tasks. Task automation through RPA (Robotic Process Automation) is quietly and efficiently working its way in. It will continue to grow smarter and will become more tightly integrated and companies should start anticipating changing processes and talent requirements accordingly.
Companies go for digitization in order to use data to streamline its internal processes to build quality products. They can offer their customers more technological solutions using the new digitized internal solutions and customer data. For example, to create innovation in their business Microsoft in order to compete with Apple and Amazon had to re-think its strategy and started focusing on a Cloud Networking systems business and introduced Office 365 and other related products.
Digital Marketing helps marketers connect with individual customers though digital channels through social media advertising, email campaigns, website/e-commerce sites, mobile apps and digital materials. The ability to collect large amounts of precise data on consumer behaviour lets marketing and sales teams, in particular, approach their work in ways never before possible.
Technology’s role within the organization is itself shifting and is evolving from automating the business to actually being the business.
According to the Deloitte Insights, The questions to ask would be:
- How can organizations leverage technology to redesign current work outcomes to focus on exponential increases in productivity and cost efficiencies and redefine new work outcomes that extend beyond productivity and cost to value, meaning, and impact?
- How will tomorrow’s technology workforce be different than today’s? How will jobs and roles change? What skills and capabilities will be needed?
- Does the current workplace support the evolving work of technology and the workforce required to complete it? How will it need to be redesigned to sustain the evolution of technology work?
Also, there would be four major shifts in the role of technology:
- From trusted operator to business cocreator
- From service delivery to value delivery.
- From the cost center to a revenue engine
- From cybersecurity to risk and resilience.
Digital Platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, Mobile are social communication platforms that will facilitate communication between the company and its clients.
Digital Market places will offer virtual locations for providers and consumers to find each other, without the platform operators intervening directly in a transaction.
Crowd working platforms (UpWork, Elance, etc.,) function as intermediaries’ for clearly defined packages of digital work based on open requests.
Conclusion– There’s a new economy on the horizon: a digital economy, which is based on automated robots and artificial intelligence performing most of the tasks most day jobs comprise today. To prepare for this inevitability, we need to rethink how we define the jobs we deem worthy of wages and benefits.