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Personalized Devices: The Secret To Improved Employee Productivity

Take strategic steps to empower workers with the right technology

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Technology has given the modern workforce remarkable access and knowledge, but how empowered do the newer generations feel in the office environments? Not very, according to Forrester Research. The gap is in how leaders are incorporating (or not) the latest technology in a way that Millennials can maximize productivity.

The tension lies between personalization and security. Millennials in particular lean into work environments where they can use their own technological methods to reach the intended goal – indeed, the BYOD, or bring your own device trend that began right before Millennials reached the workforce has peaked with their maturity. The biggest challenge with BYOD, of course, is keeping the company infrastructure in tact while dealing with potentially insecure inputs.

One out of three workers believe having a specific device or ecosystem for their role makes them more productive. But two out of three workers do not feel strongly empowered to solve problems and challenges at work based on the devices they have on their disposal.

For tech-forward businesses, the first challenge here is a budget. It usually isn’t realistic to have a completely custom experience for every employee, but leaning on technology can help bridge that concern. Virtual reality, augmented reality and other digital platforms can help create environments unique to the individual. VR and AR technologies are nearly mainstream now and can start as low as a few hundred dollars per unit. In the long run, this investment may be cheaper than creating open office spaces or other physical changes that may have to be removed.

Another hurdle isn’t the technology itself, but the responsiveness of the organization to tech needs. The emphasis has been on educating the workforce on security, communication, and strategy. Research shows that there needs to be a parallel education of IT leadership and staff in supporting the relentless, dynamic needs of said workforce. Forrester Research recently found that approximately one in three employees says that when they make device-related requests to IT, they take too long to procure the devices specific to their role in the organization.

There are steps organizations can take to give their workers the personalized tech they need to be productive.

  • Step 1: Understand needs of different employees. A desk-centric worker needs different technology than a field engineer. On-the-go employees need robust connectivity, while creative workers demand speed and compute power to move and manipulate big files.
  • Step 2: Work with IT to understand budget and implementation. Use manageability tools to ensure reduced troubleshooting and day-to-day issue resolution
  • Step 3: Consider buildable technology. For desk-based workers, that could mean assembling the right set of monitors and accessories; for workers on the go, look into lightweight but powerful devices that can be used in multiple modes.

Melding buildable, customized devices and ecosystem tailored to their role with the right infrastructure and policies will maximize employee productivity and help reduce the burden on IT. For example, adding a second monitor can improve employee productivity by 18%. A standup desk saves 10 minutes per day — that’s one work week of increased productivity per year.

IT transformation and Digital Transformation have changed how we do our jobs. Today’s employees expect the business to accommodate their work styles and empower productivity. The days of a one-size-fits-all workforce technology strategy are long gone. Tailoring devices and solutions to workers’ specific needs means a more fulfilling – and productive — work experience.

To learn how you can start personalizing technology for productivity, click here.

Copyright © 2018 IDG Communications, Inc.