Insights into work winning productivity and digitisation

What leadership needs to know about the future of Digital Workplaces

What leadership needs to know about the future of Digital Workplaces

Wednesday 13th November 2019
Philip Collard

By 2025 Digital Workplaces will provide the Virtual, digital equivalent of the physical workplace

A Digital Workplace provides the virtual, digital equivalent of a physical workplace, enabling employees to undertake all their current roles and responsibilities.

For us in construction and infrastructure, this digital workplace will apply equally to a CEO of top 10 contractor or an assistant site manager. It is not simply access to Power BI dashboards driven by a range of key spreadsheets but a highly personalised, dashboard view of all their individual roles and responsibilities across all their projects and activities, however complex. It is likely in the future each employee will refer to it as "my digital workplace".

A Significant Step Forward

The adoption of this new workplace revolution will create an enormous productivity leap forward in the same way electricity superseded steam power at the beginning of the 20th Century.

However, the same rules still apply today as they did back in the 1900's, because in order to get significant productivity increases, the old industrialist could not simply bolt in an electric motor to replace their clanking steam engine. The processes, approaches, training and methodology also had to change. Eventually, they realised the answer was to use lots of small electrical motors, delivering power at hundreds of workbenches which brought in the ability to have efficient production lines and processes. Efficient production lines could be arranged, creating more productive methods of working using an increasingly skilled and autonomous workforce.

The same rules apply today, as new digital technologies enable existing business processes to become significantly more productive and efficient, and hence why our leaders now need to reimagine their entire business processes in the cloud. They must change how they manage every aspect of their current operations.

The Critical distinction between Digitisation and Digitalisation

In the same way an industrialist could not get productivity jumps by slotting in a single electrical engine, you cannot today simply update a few existing parts separately to 'digitise' the overall process. Unfortunately, this 'digitisation' process is exactly what many firms are currently doing. Many leaders who "own" a functional silo, have digitised a single vertical process across one workflow stage.This is just one single step of many and so misses the point. It is only by really thinking through an entire sequence of multiple processes across multiple workflow stages that you can recreate a digital workplace for large areas of the business
For example, the entire workflows across work winning, pre-construction, delivery and handover addresses hundreds of steps and activities for hundreds of people to collaborate together in real time. This now can be achieved simultaneously across any number of bids and projects.
The rethinking of the entire process is called digitalisation.

Clearly many firms will continue to digitalise existing process elements but the danger is they are simply digitising an already inefficient systems. With 25 years of experience, myConsole has developed a highly intelligent pre-construction digital workplace solution.

Check out more about myConsole Here!

Whilst any digitisation has to be an improvement, it still is just doing what we have always been doing digitally. It can only be when digitalisation creates a virtual workplace across a significant range of management processes which enables people to do every aspect of their role and responsibility in a much better, and more efficient way, that you gain the immense productivity leaps.
All companies in all industries now need to think through this complex challenge prior to adopting digital and find solutions that transform significant areas of their management process as only then can digital workplaces will deliver enormous productivity jumps and higher profit margins.

Written by Philip Collard, CEO of myConsole.
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