aKeep, Foundational Frameworks for the Digital Age, Research

9 Dimensions

The nine dimensions of the Foundational Framework for the organization in the digital age are used to assess transformation maturity. Read the descriptions and see how your organization would respond.


 Individual: Creating, sharing, learning and growing.

  • Digital deployment
    • Sharing information and knowledge with others
    • Co-creating content
    • Reacting to news, information and content
    • Communicating in real time
    • Sharing media (photos, video, audio)
    • Using video to capture know-how and expertise
  • Work practices
    • Being responsible for own learning and developing
    • Setting own goals, self-managing
  • Organizational context
    • Support provided for people to do their jobs
    • Opportunities for projects, career progression clearly communicated

 Customer: Serving clients, customers or users of the organization’s services and products.

  • Digital deployment
    • Use of video for sales, marketing and live interaction with customers/users
    • Mobile services for sales, service and operational teams
  • Organizational context
    • Use and participation in the digital workplace by operations, engineering, sales & marketing, customer service and other business-related functions
    • Involvement in social/collaborative initiatives by operations, engineering, sales & marketing, customer service and other business-related functions
  • Customer relations
    • Means and practices for interfacing and collaborating with customers and external partners

 Enterprise: Cross-organizational perspective: working across silos as a networked organization.

  • Digital deployment
    • Locating expertise from across the organization
    • Finding information from anywhere in the organization
    • Search across social conversations within the organization
  • Work practices for teams
    • Flexible teams with people are involved in multiple projects, changing teams and roles based on internal and customer needs.
    • Distributed, cross-functional teams where people work together across traditional silos.
    • Teams set their own goals and objectives.
  • Organizational context
    • People’s objectives are visible across the organization.
    • Teams”work out loud,  willingly making their work visible to the larger organization as they work, and before the work is finished through ongoing use of internal communication channels.


 Structure: Virtual operational units such as communities, teams and networks complementing hierarchical structures.

  • Communities: internal only and/or with external members
    • Community of practice, single function (Communication, Financial, HR, etc.)
    • Community of interest (professional topic-based community, multi-functional)
    • Personal interests (sports, leisure, hobbies)
    • Project-based, with deliverables, limited in time
    • Problem-solving
    • Innovation and co-development
    • Community of action (spontaneous, volunteer-based groups of people gathered together for a specific, time-limited purpose)
    • Custodian / stewardship role for knowledge
  • Enterprise social network
    • Single one or several
    • Degree of deployment if single
  • Scope of the digital workplace strategy
    • Internal only or internal+external

 Process: New and simplified processes to reflect social collaborative ways of working.

  • Collaboration
    • Incentives: team-based or individual
    • Working collaboratively recognized as a valued behavior
    • Social performance management: continuous dialogue and feedback rather than the traditional one-shot annual exercise
  • Simplification
    • Teams enabled to act and, when necessary, shortcut enterprise processes in order to advance rapidly
    • Identity management: transparent, integrated or fragmented
  • New values
    • Teams have business responsibility and are accountable for producing actionable output
    • Workforce satisfaction measured regularly
    • Practices around experiential learning (simulations, gamification)
    • Co-creating, crowdsourcing and co-developing ideas

 Reach: Equal, relevant, interactive digital access for the entire workforce. Connecting everyone anywhere, anytime.

  • Coverage of the workforce by the digital workplace
    • Geographies: countries, regions
    • Business divisions, business units
  • Mobile services for the workforce:
    • Sales, customer, product/service information; Customer service data, deliveries, issues
    • Operational info, reports, alerts, messaging; Field service: work orders, update info
    • Project information: status, updates, task, workflow; Employee self-service: HR, admin, logistical; Learning: training, e-learning; Daily tasks, workflow
    • Access to document repositories; Co-creating and sharing documents; Social network/activity streams; Short messaging: texts, chat
    • Reporting information: dashboards, performance indicators; Business intelligence
  • Mobile policies: Corporate/organizational devices; BYOD (device), BYOPC (computer) and BYOA (application)
  • Sync and share capability (content synchronization and sharing across devices)
  • Video accessibility outside organizational walls (firewall)


 Leadership: Influence from any level and from any part of the organization that results in change.

  • Awareness and involvement of top management in digital initiatives
  • Degree of support, ranging from vocal support to visible, sustained commitment
    • Senior Management
    • Business-related managers and functions such as Communications, HR , IT
  • Distributed decision-making (vs. highly centralized)
  • A future-oriented perspective on the part of management
  • Clarity on the part of management regarding the place of digital transformation within the overall organizational strategy
  • An open, participatory leadership style on the part of management
    • Senior Management
    • Functions such as Communications, HR , IT and Business-related managers

 Culture: Attitudes, behaviors, styles and expectations.

  • Overall organizational culture based on 6 criteria:
    • Team-oriented vs. individually competitive work styles and behavior
    • Primarily open vs. primarily closed information systems
    • Entrepreneurial vs. follow absolute compliance to rules
    • Strong, shared vs. inconsistent, unclear sense of organizational purpose and identity
    • Open, reactive to influence of external world vs. closed environment, little interest in external world
    • Willingness to take risks vs risk averse
  • Work practices
    • Business goals and plans are communicated throughout the organization.
    • People feel free to give input to business goals and plans.
    • People freely challenge ideas including our business model and work practices.
  • Trust
    • Organizational trust: peers, people elsewhere in the organizations, local management, global/corporate management

Strategic Asset: Managing the digital workplace as a strategic asset, essential for the organization.

  • Decision-making
    • Involvement across the organization: levels and functions
    • Level of top person responsible for digital strategy
  • Vision
    • Compelling vision for digital transformation / initiatives
    • Vision clearly communicated
    • Clear goals and indicators defined
  • Cross-organizational involvement
    • Active involvement from all or most business units
    • Ownership of change initiatives by frontline and operational people
    • Collaborative and cross-organizational decision-making and planning
  • People
    • Effort to understand and improve the user experience

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