Personlised Technology Stimulates Innovation in the Workplace


Published on

Organisations that embrace the move towards personalised technology can create more opportunities for collaboration and find new ways to grow the business.

Published in: Technology, Business
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Personlised Technology Stimulates Innovation in the Workplace

  1. 1. Personalised technology stimulates innovation in the workplace a ComputerWeekly report in association with thinkstock/LDProd
  2. 2. a ComputerWeekly report in association with -2- Organisations that embrace the move towards personalised technology can create more opportunities for collaboration and find new ways to grow the business. Lisa Kelly reports thinkstock/Tatsianama The convergence of mobility, cloud, big data and security is not only driving a digital revolution, it is fundamentally changing the way we can work. Workers will increasingly bring their own knowledge, their social circles, digital footprints and identity to work, along with their own devices. As this trend develops, organisations are likely to evolve from bring your own device (BYOD) strategies to a ‘bring yourself’ approach that puts people first. However, organisations are moving at different paces. Many IT chiefs are enthusiastic about the business benefits of mobility and cloud and the efficiencies they bring. Gatwick Airport, for example, is no longer issuing BlackBerry devices to employees, but is allowing staff to use their own devices under a modernisation programme built on cloud-based technology. BYOD chimes well with the move to mobile and cloud technology. But it is also a vote winner with employees, who can bring in their preferred devices rather than being restricted to standard issue corporate devices. The spectre of insecurity still frightens many organisations, however, and concerns over security risks and data leaks persist. Acceptable use policies and software such as mobile device management systems can help to mitigate these risks, but some organisations are more risk averse than others or have more exacting compliance regimes. Public sector organisations have not encouraged BYOD schemes, for example, but even this is starting to change. New guidance on end-user devices and security by CESG, the information security arm of GCHQ, demonstrates a Harness the power of the people
  3. 3. a ComputerWeekly report in association with -3- softening towards employees using their own devices at work – within the parameters of tight security rules. CESG’s End User Devices Security and Configuration Guidance policy says that devices must be managed by the employing organisation throughout their life, and recommends 12 security controls that need to be considered. Dave Aron, Gartner fellow in the analyst’s CIO research group, says that nevertheless a revolution is taking place with the combination of new technologies. “Mobile, big data, social media and cloud are in a collision to create massive opportunities and threats. The internet of things is coming down the line and everything will be talking – not just mobile devices. Digital will become broader and deeper,” he says. Changing attitudes As this transformation gathers pace, Aron says the division between personal and professional life will blur. This has consequences for organisations that do not provide technologies that can match the experience of technologies used by employees outside of work. “If you want to be an organisation that attracts good candidates and motivated individuals, you need to think about your digital design,” he says. People want to work in more mobile-oriented companies where they can share information whenever they need, to do their job effectively, Aron adds. “There is the temptation to say we have an entitled digital generation and you have to make everything happy for them, but work is work. However, this is an opportunity to bring innovative digital minds into organisations and fresh pairs of eyes to see what works well,” says Aron. Many organisations assume things should stay the way they always have been, he says. But bringing in a different perspective can change attitudes. “Today, there is a sense that the only limitation is our imagination. There are so many different ways of doing things, and new technologies and mavericks are pushing the envelope,” he says. Aron foresees a future where employers might hire teams of workers, with their own equipment and expertise, rather than recruiting individuals. “It can be argued that HR is a failed experiment and that organisations should hire preferred teams – where the organisation has a relationship with a team, not an individual,” he says. “It’s not a case of bringing your own smartphone to work, but bringing your own team.” While this may be blue-sky thinking, it highlights what is already becoming possible. Working outside an organisation used to be a cold and lonely experience in terms of available technologies, facilities and collaboration. “Today, mobile and cloud means anyone outside an organisation could have a potentially better environment than the corporate environment,” says Aron. As the move to personalised technology accelerates, organisations will need to reinvent themselves or risk losing the best people and customers. This means organisations should look at their assets and services and rethink what they can do with them. “Mobile, big data, social media and cloud are in a collision to create massive opportunities and threats” Dave Aron, fellow, CIO research group, Gartner
  4. 4. a ComputerWeekly report in association with -4- “It is about becoming bimodal and being able to change and move fast and quickly: refactoring from staid and steady into something that becomes a source of collective advantage and being able to do things another way,” explains Aron. Clive Longbottom, founder of analyst group Quocirca, says many organisations are still wrestling with the security aspects of BYOD. “Instead of embracing new technologies and BYOD, many organisations are banning it, but users in 40% of organisations are using sites such as DropBox and Google Drive, even though they have been banned,” he says. Social networking Organisations that embrace the idea of Bring Yourself, rather than restricting it, open up opportunities for collaboration and to grow the business, he suggests. “With Bring Yourself, you have an army of people and can look at the social aspect of technologies. For example, if you have 1,000 employees and 50% are on Twitter or Facebook and they have 100 contacts each – that’s 50,000 people you suddenly have access to,” Longbottom says. “Organisations can spend a lot of money on buying databases and doing a campaign, but with Bring Yourself, it’s possible to test a campaign with the Tom Baker, CIO at Norfolk County Council, is excited about the opportunities that technologies such as big data and cloud create to allow people to work in better connected and more innovative ways that put citizens first. The local authority is working with HP, Vodafone and Microsoft on the Digital Norfolk Ambition project to transform working life at the council. The project will save £10m over five years, while meeting security parameters and compliance standards and maintaining the integrity of data. HP and the council will create a cloud-based information hub to deliver public services in Norfolk, enabling public sector agencies to collaborate to solve social problems, improve education standards and help to create a knowledge economy. “Large-scale collaboration between public services based on integrity and trust identity technologies means people can access data and systems in other people’s networks,” says Baker. This vision concurs with the Public Services Network – a UK government programme to unify the provision of network infrastructure across the public sector. It aims to create an interconnected network of networks, which will cut costs by 20%, increase efficiency and introduce better working practices. At Norfolk, people will be able to choose their own devices to enable better collaboration; for example, council social workers and NHS employees will become more joined up and coordinated in their work with citizens. Workers will be able to choose different devices from HP, such as tablets or laptops, to best suit their needs. “There is a huge amount of integration necessary and the need to bring information and data together and to link and match data. We need to join up public services in the future,” says Baker. He believes people need to be put first. “We will be able to build services around the person and use the evidence base to justify decisions and doing things differently. It will mean it is easier to intervene to prevent something going wrong, which is worse for the citizen and costs more money,” says Baker. He believes this approach will bring about a seismic change in public services. “It is vital and necessary to approach public services from a citizen perspective,” Baker says. The transformation will help with social challenges such as a rapidly ageing population. Baker believes his role as a CIO is to underpin technologies and the ability for people to use information to have meaningful interactions. “It is a wonderful opportunity to bring together practitioners and exchange information securely – and put the citizen first,” he says. Council’s joined-up approach puts the citizen first
  5. 5. a ComputerWeekly report in association with -5- contacts your employees already have. If only 10% agree, that’s 500 people and campaigns can go viral,” he says. Bring Yourself opens up other business opportunities, adds Longbottom. “If there’s a problem with a product, they can be proactive in making people aware and recalling it to show they are doing as much as they can; or they could offer discounts to employees and friends, which is good for their reputation. It can be a win-win,” he says. But it is important to implement a code of conduct. Aim to work with employees and get them to work alongside what you’re doing, he suggests. Roy Illsley, principal analyst at Ovum, says the convergence of mobility, cloud, big data and security has shifted the way people can interact and get things done. “These technologies and 4G connectivity mean that people can bypass the corporate network and change the way we work. It is now possible to provide innovation at the point where it needs to be provided – at the frontline – allowing people to do what they need to do,” says Illsley. Instead of being defined and limited by technologies, people are free to work more productively. “A salesman with an iPad can get a web app to show a potential customer information in a simple way. You can access the data you need through apps to do the job you need to do in a more flexible and productive way,” says Illsley. He believes the power of using apps to manipulate data will change the way organisations do things and interact and create massive opportunities as information is shared in more meaningful ways. “Organisations can focus on a top-down approach and put people and processes first; so employees can make connections and find better ways of working,” he says. “It is now possible to provide innovation at the point where it needs to be provided – at the frontline – allowing people to do what they need to do” Roy Illsley, principal analyst, Ovum thinkstock/.shock