Marten Bütow
23. August 2017 1

The modern IT workplace – slow down

Everybody is talking about the future of work – we think there is also a need for a sustainable workplace. But how long will this take?

I recently wrote here that employees are not satisfied with their IT workplace setup and have specific technological requirements. But the reality, and our interactions with customers in particular, teach us that the desire for an IT workplace looks a little different here and there.

A modern IT workplace – We’re on board, but please don’t do it too soon

“Please don’t change too much at once. We are on board with the dynamic workplace, but please don’t do it too soon. It isn’t in the nature of our corporate culture.” This is usually the point where Sales Consultants for the dynamic workplace stumble. A strong vision, specific added value, a convincing concept – and a collision with reality. The project that “is a roaring success”… as if!

Different corporate cultures need different dynamics

Companies have differing corporate cultures. Where many prefer to become an instant roaring success and do away with their current business model and its antiquated traditions sooner rather than later, others hesitate and prefer a smooth transition from the current situation to the future IT workplace. We call these two models “jump” and “walk”.

A champion racewalker at the Olympic Games will reach their 50 km finish line after 3 hours 40 minutes, whereas a long jumper needs just a few seconds to leap their way onto the podium. And yet they both end up achieving their dreams of becoming a gold medalist. The physical requirements of the successful racewalker (stamina) are not the same as the jumper (a large burst of energy), just as each company has a unique corporate DNA.

Dynamic workplaces and core IT

There are many reasons for this: The industry, age distribution, and decision-makers can influence this climate as well as the status of the IT. As a rule of thumb, an average of 20% of all business applications are created by the business itself. The proprietary software is either commissioned externally or programmed by staff and maintained over years or even decades. It is fully functional, often used for a company’s core processes (why should you have to develop individual apps?), but not that easy to migrate into a dynamic workplace. This also causes a drastic decline in the added value of a dynamic IT workplace concept. Or, conversely, it dramatically increases the costs of a conversion. Not every company wants to absorb these costs in one go, despite the recognized benefits.

The slow path to the modern IT workplace

This means that suppliers need to be able to cater for both the slow, evolutionary path and the dynamic, revolutionary route to the digital workplace. On the slow path to the digital workplace summit, there are at least two interim stages: CMO+ (current mode of operations optimized) in which the current status is kept in place and gradually optimized. You can also consider Hybrid scenarios from this point. Also you can introduce Standardized processes and tools, for instance. The last step toward the digital masterpiece is then no longer such a big leap. This spreads the project costs and keeps employees continuously involved in the process.

Even companies with rather static cultures can go digital in the future.

Find out more about the future of the workplace in our white paper.

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