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Industry Voice: Why tool adoption by employees will drive IT decisions in 2021

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The rapid digital transformation and resulting challenges that accompanied the shift to remote working cannot be understated. According to IDC, the adoption of collaborative technologies in 2020 accelerated by five years in just a few months. This dramatic transformation has ultimately left organizations struggling to connect and collaborate efficiently. 

According to an Asana survey conducted in October 2020, enterprise workers switch between an average of 10 apps 25 times per day, resulting in unconnected communication, reduced efficiency and increased duplication of work. This can largely be attributed to the rapid adoption of new tools and the ensuing fragmentation of these within enterprise organisations – leaving employees feeling less engaged, burnt out and unclear on how their daily work contributes to their company’s mission.

Despite these hurdles, enterprise CIOs and IT leaders are now looking beyond maintaining business continuity and are seeking out new ways to help their organisations move from surviving to thriving. During this time, it’s crucial that they remain focused on empowering employees with a tech stack that adds value, enhances culture, and allows their organisation to move faster and coordinate work effortlessly.

Narrow down on tools that scale 

In the best of times, it can be difficult to get all employees and teams aligned and working towards the same goals. In a remote work environment, it’s almost impossible unless you have workflows that scale across cross-functional departments. 

According to our research, more than half (55%) of enterprise workers are forced to switch between apps because the work they’re doing cannot be done on the same app or tool. By getting clarity on which tools are actually adding value versus those driving fragmented workflows and increasing confusion, CIOs and IT leaders can quickly narrow down their tech stack to include only the best-in-class essential tools that are both efficient and engaging for employees. 

To achieve this, leaders must determine which tools and integrations are currently used across their tech stack, as well as how these technologies impact their ability to maintain key organisational requirements, such as data protection flow and security. This will enable them to ensure they’re optimising their tech stack for workflows that scale across teams and timezones, all while keeping employees and enterprise data safe and secure.

Employee experience as the new enabler of customer experience

While IT decision-making has historically followed a top-down model, many leaders are now seeking out tools which drive higher levels of adoption, cross-functional collaboration, connection and productivity. Just as enterprises design user experience and customer experience, IT leaders are now looking to employees to help reshape the work-from-anywhere experience.This employee-centric approach helps to ensure that any tools adopted will require limited onboarding, help facilitate effortless collaboration and empower individuals and teams to do their best work, regardless of where they’re located.

Codify your company’s culture in the virtual world

Company culture was something that many of us took for granted before the shift to remote work. Beyond offering a physical space for employees to come together, offices have long provided the organising principles for how work should happen. 

With physical office spaces evolving to remote desktops and even dining tables, technology has become a defining factor which has transformed the employee experience. While the right technology isn’t the sole factor in building a supportive and positive company culture, it has the potential to help codify a good one and enhance the employee experience for the better.

This moment presents CIOs and IT leaders a unique opportunity to help enterprise organizations reinvent how they operate, including how they retain the best parts of office culture whilst offering employees greater flexibility about how and when they work. 

In an increasingly competitive market, the right tools can also go a long way in creating an engaging and attractive company culture. From onboarding new employees to communicating shifting strategic goals, tools that are easy to adopt and enable collaboration will drive efficiency and boost productivity. For leaders, this means adopting best-of-breed tools, from Zoom to Slack to Asana, that integrate seamlessly across their organisation’s tech stack, providing clarity and transparency, and helping every employee understand the value and impact of their work.

The future of work and the employee experience

The shift to wide-spread remote working has changed the employee experience forever and an employee-centric approach will remain essential for resilient enterprise organisations in 2021 and beyond.

By embracing the new tech stack for the modern enterprise to improve both efficiency and employee engagement, CIOs and IT leaders have been given an incredible opportunity to ensure their organization moves from surviving in the old normal to thriving in the next normal.

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