your ideal digital workplace

What makes the ideal Digital Workplace Platform?​

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Digital Workplace Consultant

What is a digital workplace platform? A digital workplace platform is an integrated set of specific applications and services that enable digital work to be more successful. A digital workplace application or service, such as Trello that helps to bring order to your planning, might be connected or integrated with an entire suite of applications and services like Microsoft 365. This digital workplace platform will act as a foundation not just for people to perform critical digital activities but also as a foundation for delivering meaningful business solutions.

Whatever digital workplace solution you choose, you always want to have a unified digital experience across all your enterprise tools.

The term digital workplace is used a lot today, but in reality, to most, it merely refers to the tools they use to get the job done – a means to an end. However, if you’re continuously thinking about your digital workplace and what digital workplace platform you should leverage, you are most likely not an end-user. You are a digital workplace leader and champion who is aware that you need to adapt, change, and learn!

Some of the more apparent benefits of digital communications in the workplace and digital transformation are clear, but how do you maximize the impact your digital workplace investments can have?

A digital workplace platform fit for your organization

Digital workplace platforms are a requirement in today’s modern business world. With many different technologies to choose from, it becomes easy to veer away from what is ideal for your business. 

Sometimes a platform like Microsoft 365 and its OOTB (out-of-the-box) features and functionalities will be enough. Other times, you may need to look for other digital workplace technologies, like the many provided by LiveTiles, that enhance or add a missing component that can significantly impact your business.

We’ve compiled a few key things to consider when defining your ideal digital workplace platform. 

Fitting your current needs

If you’re shopping around, you can be quickly drawn in by the newest feature because it promises to solve a specific need you have. These great features can help us understand the gaps and challenges that exist within our organizations. These challenges often require more planning to solve than just implementing a specific feature.

An ideal digital workplace platform is designed based on the current and potential needs many businesses may encounter. However, the emphasis is on ‘many businesses.’ No matter the solution, there will always be tweaks required to make it genuinely ideal for your business. As our CTO and Microsoft MVP Richard Harbridge said in his recent webinar on Microsoft 365 intranets and digital workplaces, “World-class intranets and digital workplaces are still not found out-of-the-box.”

Sometimes the seemingly apparent issues originate from another pain point altogether. Take the time to properly analyze how your digital workplace platform could work for your business and pro-actively plan on addressing pain points rather than reactively responding to new features/changes in the marketplace. Before looking at any features or solutions, it’s essential to think ahead.

Is it future proof?

Your business has a long life ahead of it. So, the solution you put in place now should be able to grow with your needs or, at the very minimum, easily integrate with other solutions that can. Ideally, it would be best if you avoided the latter, but most organizations have a diverse landscape of technologies, tools, and needs. Remember that sometimes it is better to integrate another solution than spending the exponential hours of your employees to work around these gaps. Not all integration is equal, as sometimes ‘patch jobs’ can potentially hurt you more than help you, so always plan integration for the long term.

While the digital workplace platform itself should be your primary focus, it is worth noting that informing yourself on a feature or product company’s financial well-being and potential longevity is essential, as well. Looking into these things now can prevent a future where your digital workplace platform or an essential feature goes supportless, and save you a lot of time and money. This planning applies to 3rd parties, your own in house solutions, and the 1st party vendor platforms you might be leveraging.

Does it help more than it creates work?

It is normal to have to put in extra hours when rolling out a digital workplace? It would be best if you had time, a digital workplace strategy, and aligned business processes in place. Taking a measured approach can ensure your digital workplace platform is rolled out the right way.

Business people thinking while looking at blueprints on board in creative office

Prioritizing the right investments will be critical. An excellent digital workplace platform is put in place to make everyone’s job easier, eliminate repetitive tasks, or strengthen communication. Ask yourself, how much effort will it take to maximize the benefits of this particular feature or capability? Will additional work to implement a feature be worth the work that you and your team will have to put in enabling it successfully?

When choosing how to improve your digital workplace platform think about the resources and effort required and not only how it will solve a specific issue.

A lending hand

We understand that making these decisions will impact your business for years to come, and picking the right solution is never an easy task. We would love to help you along this journey and show you exactly how we can work better together.

Meanwhile, if you’re looking for more helpful Microsoft 365 digital workplace platform information, watch our CTO and Microsoft MVP Richard Harbridge‘s webinar with partner LiveTiles called “What makes a world-class Microsoft 365 intranet and digital workplace.” The recording is now available.

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