For employees, the benefits of technology are moving far beyond delivering apps that automate tasks, maintaining a secure environment or providing access to data. In many ways, technology has become the portal for employees to engage with the organization. If they want to check on their benefits status, request time off or read the latest communication from the CEO, they are probably going to do it online.
But legacy technologies leave much to be desired when it comes to employee engagement. They are too impersonal and restrictive to promote real engagement. There is a new approach that doesn’t leave employees working “inside” apps or services as isolated sets of tasks or functions. It provides a more intelligent environment that enhances the employee experience by reducing frustration, with greater productivity as a result. This initiative is fast becoming a key organizational priority. According to a recent Economist study, enhancing the employee experience is a topic extensively discussed by senior management at 81% of companies.1 This new approach is embodied in intelligent workspaces (IWs), which are fast becoming the choice of successful organizations and the means of improving employee engagement.
There’s much to be gained by improving employee engagement. Research by Citrix shows that employees who are more engaged can deliver 20% higher productivity at Fortune 500 companies, collectively adding about $5 billion in revenue and $500 million in net profit. According to Gallup, companies with employees who are more engaged have 10% higher customer metrics and 17% higher productivity.2 And yet, in Gallup’s survey, 85% of respondents said employees are not engaged or are actively disengaged at work.
And there is no question that an IW that eliminates frustration and enables employees to work effectively is central to better engagement.
The IW is a fundamental shift in technology delivery. In contrast to a collection of apps and services, the IW organizes and guides work. An IW is a comprehensive and integrated environment that includes endpoint management, virtual apps/desktops, content collaboration, analytics and microapps. Microapps break down the large, monolithic apps in use today so employees can easily get just what they need. For example, a manager who wants to put a data table in a Word document no longer has to log into Tableau, find the table, extract the table, move back to Word and then add in the table. Microapps allow the manager to simply click and get exactly what is needed.
IWs can guide users and simplify work tasks that today are time-intensive. They go beyond tools such as Slack and Microsoft Teams, integrating tasks to enable people to collaborate more effectively. An IW is focused on enhancing what the employee does every day, not on the delivery of static and monolithic apps or services.
Businesses want an IW that delivers something similar to the consumer experience of getting things done without constant context switching or other interruptions. They want an IW that also automates many of the tasks within work processes. One of the most interesting capabilities of the IW is along the lines of technology like Amazon’s Alexa, enabling simple Q&A interaction with data, reports and other documents, independent of the context of the app the information resides in.
Removing the complexity and difficulty of work tasks improves employee engagement and increases productivity. For example, when employees can simply ask, “How much paid time off do I have left this year?” and get an answer without logging into an HR portal, finding the right report and then logging off, they will be far happier and more engaged. The Economist study found that 47% of companies believe access to information is a key enabler of enhanced employee engagement.3
Another IW capability that enhances employee engagement is the ability to personalize or modify the environment to reflect how employees work using their own unique processes. Rather than force all employees into a cookie-cutter system with the same apps on top and the same interface, the IW reflects the unique processes of the employee. This is an engagement game changer. Rather than feeling like a number or drone, always working on the same screens as everyone else, all employees will have a work environment that is truly their own.
Citrix is leading the charge into the future with the most advanced and capable intelligent workspace solutions. These solutions bring an entirely new level of convenience that is delivered automatically to the user. With Citrix, it is possible to leverage innovative technologies such as machine learning alongside simplified workflows to organize work and guide employees through their day. To learn more, visit the Citrix Workspace Intelligence page or check out an interactive demo
1 “The Experience of Work: The Role of Technology in Productivity and Engagement,” The Economist, 2019
2 “Dismal Employee Engagement Is a Sign of Global Mismanagement,” Gallup, 2019
3 Ibid. footnote 1