The megatrend of transforming into a digital business has fundamentally changed how companies operate, in ways that affect their employees. From the employee perspective, the most impactful change is that digital systems now substantially define their workday and, more importantly, the quality of their employee experience (EX). IT teams know this and are helping to drive the transformation of the digital EX. A recent Economist survey found that 80% of IT leaders believe improved EX is critical to digital transformation. Adding to the urgency, employees are now much more demanding of a digital environment that meets their needs, and not just the organization’s.
For many employees, a positive digital EX is driven by three essential capabilities. The same Economist study identified the most important functionalities that drive improved EX: the ability to work from anywhere, access to all necessary information/apps and ease of use.
The ability to work from anywhere, or true mobile support, is always a top priority. A recent Gallup survey found that workers with access to flexible work locations are 1.4 times more likely to be engaged. The impetus for mobile work has increased dramatically with the Covid-19 pandemic. It is not an exaggeration to state that the ability to work from anywhere may well be the defining factor in the ability to continue as a going concern during this crisis.
The digital workspace platforms that support the ability to work from anywhere, such as Citrix Workspace, have seen great advances in just the last 12 months. There are numerous new features and capabilities that enhance the remote EX, making it indistinguishable from working in the office. Employees expect this and more. The Economist study also found that 33% of employees expect their digital EX to be at the same level as their consumer digital experience.
The key technical capability that supports remote work is providing employees or workers with the same apps, data, and services, regardless of location or connection type. From the EX perspective, this is a non-negotiable capability. The good news is that next-generation digital workspaces have this as a primary design goal. This capability has longer-term importance as well. Leveraging a flexible workforce is essential to organizational efficiency.
Another important capability of modern digital workspaces that delivers on both the immediate needs of remote work and longer-term strategic demands of the business is greater simplification and the subsequent ease of use. Moving security to the operational “stack” of the digital workspace lets IT manage it cohesively and eliminates the need for employees to act as the first line of cyberdefense. This is a fundamental change for the better. Employees don’t like being saddled with cybersecurity tasks that get in the way of productivity. And the organizational benefit of a centralized security stack that covers all remote (or even local) devices and improves defensive posture is hugely beneficial. Sign-on and credential management for employees is also simplified. The use of single sign-on (SSO) eliminates the need for employees to enter credentials for every new app they use or database they access. Finally, all the updating and patching processes are now handled on one platform by IT professionals. Employees no longer need to worry about this often confusing and time-consuming set of tasks.
Organizations that need to meet the challenge of supporting a fully remote organization must consider deploying next-generation digital workspaces, not only to react during the crisis, but also to position the organization for success in the longer term. Further, the modern digital workspace delivers on management’s goal of an improved EX. Solutions such as Citrix Workspace deliver a “win-win” for the employee and the organization. Employees are more engaged and productive, keeping them in a positive frame of mind. Organizations can stay productive during the short-term crisis and be confident that the digital systems that drive success will be available in an optimal manner, anytime and anywhere.