Information technology departments are always looking for ways to add value to their organizations – and one of the biggest ways to do that is to help employees get more work done.
Productivity is low for most employees, according to a recent report released by the Corporate Executive Board (CEB).
Based on a study of 23,000 employees over a two-year period, the CEB found that only 40% of those workers could be considered “truly effective” in all of the areas that impact their organization’s performance.
In addition, managers and executives say they need their workers to get an average of 20% more productive if they’re going to reach their business goals.
How IT can help
While there are many areas in which employees can improve, the CEB study found there are a few areas in which technology can have a big impact:
1. Better collaboration
Most employees don’t work in isolation — they’re highly involved in a team and work on projects that require input from a number of people. However, as workplace teams become more global and mobile, that’s becoming more difficult, and 80% of employees don’t effectively collaborate with co-workers, according to the CEB.
One big problem: Companies are deploying the wrong collaboration software. Often, organizations look for one system that they can use across the entire company. However, different departments and teams have different needs, and in many cases deploying several different systems is better in the long run.
2. Smarter use of data
According to the survey, more than half (62%) of employees aren’t able to effectively use data for their decision making. Even among employees in technical positions, 47% don’t have the ability or access to the right technology to do so.
Giving employees to ability to look at information and use it to do their jobs better requires more than just deploying the right software systems. Employees also need the right training in order to use those systems effectively.
3. Help dealing with changes
As businesses struggle to choose the software that works best for them, the tools employees use for work might change frequently. And, according to the CEB, 77% don’t adjust well to change.
For IT, that means special care must be taken when systems or processes for users are changed. Exactly what is required will depend on the situation. That’s why it’s important to pay attention to users and figure out what they need, whether it’s additional training or a temporary increase in support staff, for example.