Many technology providers are adapting to be able to suit all five generations. The adoption curve has now been turned on its head. This is amplified when new generations enter the workplace.
Mass adoption of home working has brought technology pain points and the issues surrounding connectivity and communication to the forefront of people’s minds.
Here we’ll take a look at some of the best technology and tools on the market that can help get all generations in the workplace on the same page, despite different working styles.
With the user experience and adoption becoming far greater priorities for every technology provider, companies are looking for the right solution for their business that works for all their staff, customers and suppliers, ensuring its easy to use and uncomplicated.
Here are some things to think about when choosing the right tools.
While you may not think of training as a tool, it is instrumental in ensuring all generations in your workplace are on the same page. Training doesn’t just take place in person, so it’s important that multi-generational workplaces adapt to this. After all, different generations have different needs.
A team that is aware of all the technology at their disposal, and that are confident using it are likely to be more productive and collaborative. They can also play a supporting role with team members who may be less confident using certain technologies.
Demand for video conferencing, whether it be standalone tools like Zoom or more integrated unified comms solutions like Microsoft Teams, has surged since lockdown. In fact, business-focused mobile app downloads reached 62 million during the week of March 14-21, the highest number ever seen.
While some employees are experiencing so-called ‘Zoom fatigue’, the key is to get the right balance of video and phone calls. Research suggests that the energy needed for video calls is so much more than in person so plan your meetings with that in mind to help maintain a happy, motivated workforce.
A workforce consumer survey from Gartner revealed that employees spent an average time of 11.7 hours a week in meetings. In fact, 9% of respondents spent more than 20 hours of their working week in meetings.
Microsoft Teams allows you to scale from 3 to 300 users for calls. What’s more you can collaborate in real time with the sharing of whiteboards, content and desktops.
Read our thoughts on Zoom vs Microsoft Teams.
Instant messaging apps like Slack and Skype, or new unified comms tools like Microsoft Teams, mean that the team can be in contact with each other throughout the day, without needing to pick up the phone. However, all have the capability for video and audio calls if needed. You can send files with ease and quickly ask any burning question rather than waiting for an email reply. It’s worth being aware however, that Skype for Business is being discontinued by Microsoft in 2021 and replaced with Teams.
VoIP cloud phone systems provide businesses with an easy way to answer calls on-the-go without being restricted to one device. The call handling features make managing calls in and out of your business responsive and straightforward and integrate with unified comms solutions like Microsoft Teams to provide one easy way to communicate and collaborate across your business from one platform.
When considering cloud-based collaboration and productivity tools there’s a clear market leader in Microsoft 365 with their vision of enabling users to work anywhere on any device. They’ve gone beyond the office suite of Word, Excel and PowerPoint to include true collaboration tools such as Teams, SharePoint and OneNote that drive collaboration across traditional boundaries.
In isolation each component of the Microsoft suite has plenty of worth and often more capable competitors.
Google Drive integrates seamlessly with Docs, Sheets and Sides and has the capability for multiple users to edit and view files at the same time.
We’ve already mentioned that Zoom or Slack have powerful video or chat functionality that in isolation more than rivals Teams.
Dropbox brings files and cloud content together securely with over 450,000 business teams trusting it daily.
But you can’t get away from the success of Microsoft 365 combining all of these applications together with a common interface that much of the workforce has literally grow up using, combined with business-grade security and reliability. Around 1 million businesses worldwide are now using it every day.
As our case studies show you can’t work effectively and use technology like the above without a reliable connection. Without that your employees are going to struggle to be productive and frustrations will rise.
In August 2020 the government reached its gigabit broadband rollout milestone, with half a million premises with access to gigabit technology. But there still fundamental improvements needed to get everyone connected and working as seamlessly as possible.
There are various options to choose from when it comes to improved connectivity, ranging from solutions like business broadband perfect for those needing a robust connection when working from home, to leased line DIA and SD-WAN for offices, businesses and people back in the office.
With so many options on the market it can be understandably challenging to find the right solution for you and your business. Get in touch today to talk to the team about the selecting the best technology to cater to your business needs.
Keen to discover more about your multigenerational workplace? Read our post on the five generations working side by side.