What is the digital workplace?

I can’t remember what I was searching for but I stumbled across a piece of research from Dimension Data last week on the ‘Digital Workplace’ (I must admit up to this point I only really knew of DD as sponsors of a World Tour cycling team that happens to feature Britain’s own Mark Cavendish amongst its ranks).

The research was based around organisations with at least 1,000 employees, so bigger than a typical TSG customer but the results provide some interesting insights none-the-less.

However, before we get on to the results, I suppose the first question many will ask is ‘what is the digital workplace’ anyway?

In some respects it’s actually about as useful as referring to the cloud as if the cloud is a singular concept rather than the potentially complex combination of services that just share in common the fact that they don’t sit on servers in your buildings.

I’ve no doubt we’re all familiar with the ‘hot desk’. So, is that the same as the digital workplace, or does the digital workplace refer to the laptop you carry with you to use at your chosen hot desk?

In reality, it’s probably neither. From our perspective it’s more about the combination of tools (applications/apps/services) that you use to do your job and most importantly how they work together rather than in isolation from each other.

According to the research, European organisations are ahead of global competitors, with flexible working dramatically on the rise.

Forty-nine percent of European organisations say they will have employees working from home full-time two years from now – so it’s good to know that we’re already ahead of the game at TSG with around 150 of our people home-based (certainly helps to attract the right skills in the right locations). Although most of the time they’re more likely to be onsite beavering away for our customers.

That doesn’t just impact on their own workplace but on the way we all work.

It’s very rare for us to be in a meeting where at least one of our colleagues isn’t joining via Skype for Business (apparently soon to be renamed by Microsoft as part of its ongoing evolution). It’s difficult to imagine how we’d cope without it and, more significantly, what the travel costs would be.

Skype for Business is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the ‘digital workplace’ and there are far more recent and more exciting innovations that we’ll showcase at our forthcoming Futuretech events in London, Newcastle and Manchester.

The Futuretech events are designed specifically to provide insights into exactly how the ‘digital workplace’ could work for the widest variety of businesses and across all departments therein.

One reassuring figure from the research is that 60% of (these large) organisations don’t have a formal and comprehensive strategy around how they deploy or plan to benefit from workplace technology.

That doesn’t surprise us, and you don’t need to be concerned if you’re at the start of your journey to the nirvana that is digital transformation.

Much of what we’ll cover at Futuretech is literally hot of the press as our consultants continue to innovate and explore new ways of deploying technologies to help customers work more efficiently and more effectively on a daily basis.

As I mentioned in my previous blog, we get quite excited about all this new stuff but it can be a challenge to keep up.

Never a dull moment though.

In fact, blink and you’ll miss it. So, I’d recommend that you get yourself registered for Futuretech now! But I suppose I am biased.

Would it convince you if I said it would help you understand how your organisation could be more joined up, your people could work smarter, security could be enhanced by design…..do I need to go on?!

And by the way, we’re actually going to be showcasing a technology that could well be described as the definitive digital workplace!