Office employees and the call for the flexible working
A Xing survey from 2014 summarizes the expectations of the new generation of knowledge workers regarding their workplace.
Flexible working, the very latest hardware and software, home office. Corporate IT has to measure itself against these standards – and these issues are also crucially important for attracting staff. The topics of “working on the move” and “from home” have long since become classics and provide employees and managers with greater freedom for structuring their working day. And those are the topics that we discuss with our customers: “How can we provide modern workplaces for our employees? The demand from the specialist units is growing constantly; the HR unit wants to establish the enterprise as an innovative employer, …”.
The word “modern” is open to a great deal of interpretation. I would prefer to use up to date or established on a new level. For, let us be honest, home office and mobile working have long ceased to be talking points or even USPs. They are the new standards of working life. More like hygiene factors.
Specific requirements for technology
But what specific requirements do knowledge workers place on technology? A study recently published by msg throws some light on this question and focuses on the technical wishes. The first of its findings is that 64 percent of employees are dissatisfied with the technical equipment at their workplace. 30 percent cite outdated technology, another 34 percent confirm “lots of limitations”. Right at the top of the wish list come high-speed network connections (88%), ease of use (82%), social media tools (77%), device-independent messenger services (74%). Furthermore there is the need for rapid provisioning of new technical innovations (67% – Windows 10 fits in along these lines), mobile instead of stationary devices (64%). And all that EVEN THOUGH the wish for home office and less of an obligation to work in the office tends to be minimal! Note: The call for “more modern” IT workplace equipment is not a domain for the young wild individuals of generation Y or Z that want to maintain flexible working models.
Change management is changing
Technical innovations – Before the rule of thumb was that if new IT solutions are to be embraced in the enterprise, then you need suitable change management at employee/user level, not just with regard to technology. For people were reluctant to move into “uncharted territory.” All that seems to be changing. Maybe change management is also getting a new look, it’s no longer the employees that must be “changed”, but they are the ones demanding change and now driving IT forward. We’ll see.
Our white paper Future Work provides further input on the issue of modern work and suitable IT. Alternatively, the “Virtual Workplace Evolution” also provides an array of speakers that happily discuss their view of things.