2020. The name alone sounds as if it’s harbouring a new futuristic age for our planet. And as we enter this brand new decade, living up to the name, it’s undeniable that we have indeed entered a new age. The way we communicate, work and merely live in this decade has vastly changed since the beginning of the last. And one of the most crucial advancements in this time is the rising status quo of the modern workplace.
The name is self explanatory enough, but what exactly makes a modern workplace in 2020? To help you understand where your own workplace is at now and how to progress into this new digital era, we have compiled a list of the most defining and crucial aspects of a modern workplace.
1. WORKING REMOTELY
Workers in 2020 can’t go a day without hearing the very term. It is simply a fact of life now that we have to seriously consider how and where we work. In a study conducted by FlexJobs and Global Workplace Analytics, it was found that in the last 12 years there has been an 159% increase in remote work. In the U.S. alone there are almost 5 million citizens working from home, and in Australia “over two-thirds (68%) of Australian employers say their company now allows employees to work remotely“. And these are numbers that are sure to increase tenfold in the coming years.
A business in this day and age will rarely succeed if it does not have itself seamlessly integrated with the digital world. And it is only natural for this progression to finally become a universal workplace tactic, as its benefits are countless. Not only does it limit travel times, which helps the environment by decreasing carbon emissions from our vehicles, it also gives workers more time to actually do their work! The remote working method also tackles a more immediate issue for many workers these days. Saving money. Eliminating travel fees, cutting office building expenses, and even smaller things such as reducing the need for formal business attire, all count toward a more efficient means of earning money for everyone.
Another benefit that almost goes without saying is of course safety. An unfortunate detractor of today’s fast moving, highly populated and bustling world society is that when something like a COVID-19 pandemic breaks out, its severity is felt globally. And unless everyone’s got a hazmat suit ready and waiting in the closet, sending people out into the workforce isn’t going to be good for anyone. So, it’s not a stretch to say that remote working is quite literally lifesaving at the moment. Our job as business leaders is to make the modern workplace a reality, and we’ve been thrilled to hear time and time again that with our help, so many of our clients have made the transition into remote work easily. The signs are pretty clear now. A modern workplace’s major benefit is the ability to easily work remotely.
2. COLLABORATE SWIFTLY AND EFFECTIVELY
Going hand in hand with remote working is the sheer effectiveness of a modern workplace. With FlexJobs statistics revealing 85% of businesses believing that productivity has increased in remote working, it’s clear that a modern workplace lives on its efficiency. And this only makes more sense when adding the knowledge that working from home is said to alleviate many workers’ stress and distractions, as well as freeing them of wasted time spent commuting.
To help ease workplaces out of these traditional norms and transition into the modern era, online platforms such as Microsoft Teams are the key. The ability for people to share documents, messages and general knowledge with each other (with the simple click of a button and without the need for email!) is crucial to companies harnessing a greater form of competency. No longer is there wasted time sorting through emails you were unnecessarily cc’ed on, walking around an office or getting stuck in an off-course chat with your workmates. The workflow becomes seamless, uninterrupted, organised, and most importantly, easy. At Axiom IT, we prioritise working closely with our clients, alongside Microsoft Teams, to achieve this very swift and effective modern environment.
Having an online platform with such qualities be the connective tissue of your workplace naturally creates an atmosphere of comfort, ease and unity. Which, arguably, is the best combination a workplace could ask for and the most sure way for a business to stay ahead of the game in this day and age.
3. OPEN COMMUNICATION
A typical trope of a more traditional workplace is the way in which it separates its decision makers from the rest of the workforce. There can often be a more closed-off and segregated nature to these environments which is frequently daunting and unnecessarily tense for many employees, especially newcomers. And while a change from this can be difficult for many businesses, it is ultimately a necessary one.
Living in a digital age means that many young people are accustomed to an open form of communication and teaching. Employees want to understand the setting they are going to work in, and any signs of exclusion are quick ways to turn people away. Barriers between the workforce can also harm the overall uniformity of collaboration the workplace may be striving for. Regardless of whether an individual worker cares or not, always having the ability there to ask questions, learn and share with others is a strong sign of an open and effective modern workplace.
This is where platforms such as Microsoft Teams come in once again, allowing for multiple avenues of communication between employees. And the greater the understanding workers have with each other, their tasks and goals, the greater the work they can do. Of course, though, this is a big change from the traditional operating modes most organisations have, which is why many need a helping hand with the change and we offer such guidance to our clients.
4. USING THE CLOUD
According to techjury’s own findings, 90% of the world’s data has only been created in the last two years alone! So, it should be of no surprise that one of the most increasingly important features of a modern workplace is none other than the cloud.
For those that don’t know, the cloud refers to servers accessed over the internet. This inherently means that when a company integrates its data with a cloud storage system, it no longer needs to manage its own physical servers. Essentially, the trust is put elsewhere to store your information, such as Microsoft’s own OneDrive service, which is included for our clients in AxiomCLOUD.
These types of services fit perfectly in the mantra of today’s modern workplace, which puts heavy emphasis on the ability to work from home, as well as the swift effectiveness of said work. Something like the OneDrive service is a prime example as it seamlessly works across multiple devices (PC, tablet, mobile phone), allowing users to easily to share files with one another, add files to discussions on open forums, and collaborate briskly without the need to send constant newly edited copies of files back and forth over email.
Simply, cloud systems provide exactly what a modern workplace needs; an accessible, cost-effective, and organised solution for where a business can store its data. Alongside this, they are also a secure route. Cloud security is a top priority for many companies in this industry, and in a statistic given by Gartner, cloud workloads are expected to “experience 60% fewer security incidents than traditional data centres by 2020”. We’ve had massive success transferring businesses from physical servers to the cloud and we sleep a bit better at night knowing that those clients can now count on data security.
5. CONSISTENTLY LEARNING & UPGRADING
As you may have already noted, plenty of the changes we’re seeing going into this modern workplace age are drastic. The speed at which the universal workplace is changing is exponential. The amount of new online services that have taken off since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic alone is remarkable, and this rapid change can be an easy way for many businesses to fall behind. Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Slack, among countless others have skyrocketed within the recent year, but despite the litany of options given to businesses now, it’s important for a modern workplace to have a clear understanding of what best serves its own needs.
A diverse buffet of food is only wondrous until you’ve overloaded your plate with too much for your stomach to handle. Plenty of platforms, such as Teams, have countless features embedded within it which allow for a company to need little else in terms of communication. For instance, there’s no need to have Zoom if you already have Teams. So, when a business finds a few reliable services such as these, they would be wise to hold onto them and learn them intricately. New features for such platforms are common – and for a workplace to understand each necessary feature is crucial to getting the most out of them. To fall behind, is to risk your business’ productivity and efficiency.
This is why comprehensive online training programs have equally risen in popularity in recent times. Data from the Association for Talent Development (ATD), reveals that “companies that offer comprehensive training programs have 218% higher income per employee than companies without formalised training.” Naturally, this training leads to benefits in all that was mentioned above, including communication, effectiveness, and each employee’s individual comfort. Organisations are immediately at an advantage when having an adoption specialist working with them, allowing them to optimise the way in which they use their platform for their unique business needs.
When a business has a strong understanding of the devices & programs they utilise, it allows them to assess the pros and cons of whatever new, hit platform comes around the corner from an educated perspective. Do they really need it? What could it offer that they don’t already have? After all, you’re not truly a modern workplace until your business understands the very mechanisms of a modern workplace.
KEEPING UP WITH THE FUTURE
By now, it should be pretty clear that a modern workplace is a strong combination of many features, including the ability to work remotely, to use online platforms to both work and communicate effectively, to use a secure and diverse cloud system, and to have the foresight to continually learn and improve their use of modern workplace tools. All of these elements are about contributing to creating a safe, unified, effective, smart and capable business that earns the title of being a modern workplace. Axiom IT proudly offers help and training to our clients in all of these areas, assisting them forward comfortably in this modern landscape. For more information, call us at 1300 991 992 or email [email protected] You can also visit our contact page for more information.