A great digital experience is critical to a great employee experience

  • Posted on June 13, 2019
  • Estimated reading time 3 minutes

I had the pleasure of presenting and participating in the Gartner Digital Workplace Summit just shy of a week ago. It was illuminating to talk to people about the current imperatives driving their digital initiatives and agendas. What is becoming clearer by the day that employee experience (EX) is as critical to business success as customer experience (CX) – or what we at Avanade like to call EX + CX = ROI+. This is a tipping point of sorts, when employee expectations are now considered equal value to customer expectations and the momentum around this is fast-moving. The challenge for organizations is – how do we address EX holistically, and how do we provide digital tools to enhance and simplify our organizational EX?

If you’re an employee just starting at a new employer and you have a disappointing digital experience, what does that tell you about whether you made the right decision to choose that employer? Too many companies’ “digital experience” is handing you a clunky laptop or even worse, a desktop computer, and then when you ask questions, you are told to “look it up on the intranet.” Especially if that intranet is not personalized to you, not a great experience on a mobile phone, not collaborative and has a lousy search. Especially if that intranet seems to be designed for corporate communications to push a bunch of messages at you and not a place where you can get your work done. Especially if most people are still doing business in the company via email and not via instant messaging or collaborating digitally on work products.

Unfortunately, too many companies are still stuck in outdated ways of working. They haven’t made the pivot from Intranet to Digital Hub nor the pivot from the physical workplace being a desk you’re assigned to a true digital environment where technology supports flexible, collaborative ways of working.

At Avanade, we helped a global pharmaceutical company create a new Digital Hub for its employees using Akumina plus Microsoft’s Office 365 technologies. Employees have seen it flip the equation from pushing what the company wants them to see to providing a personalized, mobile enabled workplace that supports their daily work in their preferred language. They don’t have to be experts at using lots of different backend applications, because the Digital Hub serves up just what they need to know and do via easy to use widgets that integrate content and tasks from ServiceNow, SAP, Salesforce, Workday and other systems into their personalized Digital Hub experience. It helps them find others with the expertise they need to do their job and easily collaborate with them. Employees are getting work done faster and the company is seeing employee satisfaction scores rise.

We’re also using digital technologies to help employees work in entirely different ways. One of the USA’s largest hospital systems came to us to help them better treat their cancer patients. They had tried to follow industry best practices by using a Tumor Board to have doctors across multiple disciplines meet to devise the best treatment plan for their patients. However, using physical meetings to conduct these reviews was just not working due to busy doctors splitting schedules between different hospitals, being called away for emergency procedures or other scheduling conflicts. Avanade created a virtual and asynchronous method for doctors to review and comment on the week’s new cancer cases online using Microsoft Teams. They could participate at the time and place and on the device of their choosing and still get to consensus around the best way to treat each patient. The hospital system was able to increase the percentage of cases going through the Tumor Board from less than 20% to over 80%, get more specialties to participate, provide better treatment for patients and increased doctor satisfaction with the process. This helps the company retain their valuable network of affiliated doctors along with their patients.

So, what does this portend for the future? There’s a big opportunity to be a leader in your industry. To use your Digital Workplace to attract the best and brightest and to keep them at your company. To help them grow by learning from and collaborating with other bright people in your company, no matter where they are located. To help them work in new, more efficient and more effective ways using digital technologies. To invest in your EX in equal measure to your investment in CX. And to realize that your employees are the growth engine of your company and you need to enable them to work at peak performance.

Feel free to contact me about the Avanade Tumor Board solution.

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