…… Part of The Basics series. First published in May 2015 ……
This post presents 10 key findings from The Organization in the Digital Age, the 9th annual report about the workplace. It is based on input from nearly 300 organizations worldwide.
- Digital Humanizes and Energizes Organizations by Making Work Personal
- Excellence in Customer Satisfaction Correlates to Strong Digital Workplaces
- Digital Workplace Maturity Significantly Higher in Organizations With Culture of Trust
- Finding People “Who Know” Is Winning Over Finding “The Information I Need”
- Mobile Services in 2014 Did Not Achieve Predictions Based on 2013 Data
- Few Organizations Have Chief Digital Officers in Fullest Sense: C-Level and Broad Internal-External Scope
- Community Management Becoming Embedded in Other Roles
- Top Change Driver: Sense of “Why”
- Overall Results from Digital Workplace Scorecard Show Good Progress Between 2013 and 2014
- Most Challenges Linked to Mindset of People and Organizations
This 9th annual global survey included 373 people from 26 countries representing 280 organizations. Participants responded to an in-depth online survey of 140 questions. The data was collected between October 2014 and early January 2015.
The Workplace in the Digital Age
The workplace lives at the intersection of people, organization and technology. The digital workplace is often described as an ecosystem of platforms, technologies and services. True as this is, the fundamental changes happening in organizations and workplaces today go deeper. They involve fundamental changes in work practices, mindset, leadership and behavior.
The Digital Workplace Framework takes these complementary dimensions into account and provides a basis for organizations to assess their digital maturity.
Two Primary Angles of Analysis
Data is analyzed primarily from two perspectives:
1. Early Adopter organizations compared to the Majority. The top 20 percent of organizations are compared to the remaining 80 percent based on scores, calculated by mapping survey input to the Digital Workplace Framework.
2. High-performing organizations on four business scenarios. Respondents answered questions, self-assessing their organization’s performance in each scenario and indicating their key success factors.
- Learning scenario: ease for people to learn in the flow of work
- Customer scenario: ease and efficiency for the customer-facing workforce
- Agility scenario: agility when confronted with sudden unexpected events
- Knowledge scenario: confidence of preserving knowledge and know-how
1. Digital Humanizes and Energizes Organizations by Making Work Personal
Data over the past seven annual surveys show a slow but steady increase in individual capabilities to co-create content with others, communicate in real time and share information and knowledge directly without going through official publishers.
The availability of enterprise social networks made a big jump between 2013 and 2014. They are now available in well over half the organizations surveyed.
Many Early Adopters expect senior managers to show some degree of social participation and some say they are evaluated in part on this social visibility.
2. Excellence in Customer Satisfaction Correlates to Strong Digital Workplaces
26 percent of organizations with maturing digital workplaces say the quality of their customer service is excellent. Few in the Majority, those with less effective digital workplaces, make the same statement.
Top performers in the customer scenario say their key success factor is information management.
These organizations also show a high level of management involvement, from CEO to operational, in decision-making about the digital workplace. 50 percent say their digital workplace is reported at the Executive level.
3. Digital Workplace Maturity Significantly Higher in Organizations With Culture of Trust
Specific work culture characteristics were explored. Each correlates individually with high performance in the four business scenarios:
- A strong, shared sense of purpose
- Distributed decision-making and control
- Freedom to experiment and take initiatives
4. Finding People “Who Know” Is Winning Over Finding “The Information I Need”
Enterprise search is stuck at a low level of satisfaction with results. Organizations are prioritizing their efforts between finding information or finding people and the latter is the more frequent choice.
Lack of good information management practices is a concern because the high performers in the learning, customer and knowledge scenarios cite information management as a key success factor.
5. Mobile Services in 2014 Did Not Achieve Predictions Based on 2013 Data
The predictions were that 40 percent of organizations would have mobile services for everyday needs and 30 percent for business-related needs. The actual results are 30 percent and 25 percent, respectively, for the highest services in each category.
6. Few Organizations Have Chief Digital Officers in Fullest Sense: C-Level and Broad Internal-External Scope
However, reporting about digital workplace progress takes place at the executive level in 23 percent of Early Adopter organizations compared to 2 percent in the Majority. A few organizations are creating digital programs, intended to run for specified periods of time, led by CDOs who report directly to the CEO or equivalent.
7. Community Management Becoming Embedded in Other Roles
Early Adopters are moving away from a full-time dedicated role to considering community management a skill set included in other job roles.
8. Top Change Driver: Sense of “Why”
All organizations, Early Adopters and the Majority, agree that having a sense of why is the most effective change driver when undergoing digital transformation. It is followed very closely by behavior of senior leaders and behavior of colleagues. The lowest ranked change drivers are classroom training, putting digital in job objectives, recognition and rewards and events – formal and informal.
9. Overall Results from Digital Workplace Scorecard Show Good Progress Between 2013 and 2014
In spite of persistent challenges, overall digital workplace maturity has increased between 2013 and 2014. The Majority jumped 34 percent from 192 points in 2013 to 258 in 2014, thereby nearing the end of the starting stage (from 0 to 299 points). Early Adopter organizations evolved from 432 points to 508 points reaching the upper part of the developing stage (from 300 to 599 points). Out of the nearly 300 organizations that participated at the end of 2014, only eight scored fully in the maturing level (from 600 to 900 points). See details in the Appendices.
10. Most Challenges Linked to Mindset of People and Organizations
Most of the challenges rated as serious and holding us back involve decision-making and value. These top challenges have changed little over the past 12 months. Data collected at the end of 2013 is practically the same as that collected at the end of 2014.
- Too many competing priorities
- Slow decision-making, often consensus-based
- Too much focus on the tool, not enough on people and change
- Politics, inside the organization
- No strong business case, ROI or proven value