Digital transformation - How C' level execs see it

C 'level executives should take a predictive approach to prepare their workforce for the changes that are coming in technology, according to a survey by Deloitte . Advancements in tech have a profound effect on the human side of business, influencing where, when, and how employees get their work done.

Even when business functions are amplified by new technology capabilities, the human workforce remains the most critical asset of an organization. These people will be working in a more networked, geographically distributed, functionally mobile, collaborative, and real-time fluid manner. Such shifts demand adaptability on the part of workforce, and forward thinking of executives to ensure the transition goes smoothly. C 'level executives need to ensure that work, collaboratively done by humans and machines, is coordinated to create maximum revenue for the company and its employees.

Increased use of technology offers an opportunity to create an engaging environment for employees and has the potential to better prepare an organization for the future.

The survey by Deloitte offers a number of insights for leaders ;

1. Pay attention to culture.

It is believed that company culture will be critical to an organization's ability to realize its vision in the future. The larger the company is, in terms of workforce and volume of business, the more important this issue becomes. To develop a common goal and sense of belonging in the workforce that is dispersed is vital. Executives who want to benefit from the full value of digital transformations should pay close attention to the development and announcement of communication around workplace changes. Some of the most important changes respondents expect to make within the next two years are; They aim to ensure efficient decision-making structures and tools, and employee time and resources to innovate by re-engineering current processes are the

2. Increase transparency

Close to three in five leaders say transparency in communications is key for achieving organization's goals. Since more than 30% of the global workforce is mobile, almost 29% of full-time employees now work outside their employer's premises, and almost 20% of the workforce comprises of temps, contractors, and freelancers, according to another Deloitte report . Thus clarity and sincerity around the exploration and introduction of digital technologies will help employees adapt to and more frequent shifts in their roles.

3. Manage generational expectations

Soon, millennials will make up 50% of the employees worldwide. However, some individuals are commonly working in their 70s and 80s. Leaders manage a workforce comprising up to four different generations, management across generations will be more important than ever. Nearly four in five executives say generational differences in employees' expectations will drive increased emphasis on decentralized collaboration, whereby ownership of decisions is delegated down through the organization. The key would be to build an environment that supports tractability and tools that enable employees to collaborate and exchange ideas transparently.

4. Measure the business impact.

The survey showed the strategic expectation of those involved in digital transformation hope to garner new business opportunities and increase rates of innovation. Those executives spearheading the digital transformation of work identify specific business benefits their organizations are targeting and regularly measure. They can then report on key indicators associated with those goals, making adjustments to strategy as required based on performance.

5. Create context

The way we work in five years may look like it does today.So, it is imperative to move away from email and toward more sophisticated collaboration tools. There is significant shift towards globalization, thus virtual teaming technologies are required. However, new tools alone are not enough. The time that workers spend today answering emails, or mobile phones is not necessarily increasing productivity. The leaders are imperative to develop the right cultural context for these new tools and adapt their workplace processes and policies to make the most of digital capabilities.

6. Build networks, not hierarchies

Executives should play an important role, to enable an empowered network of employees capable of acting autonomously rather than waiting for direction. Around 40% of respondents surveyed by Deloitte want to place focus on facilitating the exchange of ideas and providing greater independence at individual and individual levels. This shift from "top-down" to "side-by-side" organizational constructs is a critical component of the future, according to the survey.

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Inspired by and extracts from a Deloitte Survey of c-level executives and Wall Street Journal Article ' Adapting to the Future of Work ' by Stephen Redwood and Mark Holmstrom, principals, Deloitte Consulting LLP; And Zach Vetter, managing director, Deloitte LLP

Aug 22, 2017