Words like “digital” and “digitalization” have flooded the public discourse, especially since the start of the pandemic.
The reason is one. Digitalization offers solutions to the challenges of pandemic at an economic, social and educational level.
A digital workplace or telecommuting as it has been called, would not be possible without the combination of a range of digital and telecommunication technologies.
In the absence of these technologies, the effects of the pandemic on the global economy would be more dramatic. Practically, business operation would be impossible without workers being able to go to work.
In this article, you will learn what the digital workplace is and what are the basic technologies that support it.
What is digital work?
Digital work is defined as work, whether paid or unpaid, that is performed using a combination of digital and telecommunications media or producing digital media content.
In this case, we will only deal with the work done using digital tools and media in a digital workplace. Either these are necessary for project development, such as audio and video editing, or the various technologies used to increase productivity or make tasks possible or easier.
The latter is what happened during the pandemic and still continues to this day.
Digital workplace and digital transformation
Faced with the risk of suspension of operation due to the special conditions created, most companies went forward with their digital transformation.
The new digitalization trend created was also the one that made the right conditions for a digital workplace to become a reality.
The new opportunities created by digital technology, such as working from home, have created an unprecedented situation for both employees and companies themselves.
What do we mean by digital transformation?
Terms like digitalization and digital transformation are synonymous and are used interchangeably for the same thing. Both terms refer to adopting more digital technologies and solutions within businesses or the public sector.
Digitalization’s main goal is the processes’ automation and the creation of a new operating framework with technology’s help. This way, companies manage to create more value for their customers and be more competitive.
Digital transformation is essentially the digital revolution. Just as revolutions bring radical social changes, the digital revolution creates a transitional bridge to the digital future.
Since we talk about revolutions, digitalization’s evaluation should not be done with quantitative but with qualitative criteria. Based on this, we shouldn’t care just about more technology but rather the application of technological solutions where there were previously none. This is when businesses see the most benefits.
With the example of the digital workplace and the telecommuting case, we see how vital technology has been in business continuity.
Most companies had no provision for remote work. Therefore, they did not have the appropriate infrastructure and solutions to support it.
With telecommuting becoming mandatory due to lockdowns, many businesses sped up their digital transformation by adopting technologies to make a digital workplace possible.
Core technologies behind the digital workplace
The work transition from the physical to the digital realm required a range of technologies that made digital work possible and more efficient.
Digital work, mainly when we refer to telecommuting, requires a good internet connection. Without it, working from home and using the most digital tools is practically impossible.
The new work models that have dominated since the pandemic, such as hybrid and remote working, would have been impossible without connectivity to the internet. Although 85% of Greek households have access to the internet, there were many connectivity issues at the start of the pandemic.
With children’s education and parents’ work now being done from home, there was a big issue with the lack of bandwidth. Thus, in many cases, upgrading the internet connection at home was mandatory to support the increased needs.
It also became essential to improve the quality of connectivity in the country by expanding optical fibres and 4G and 5G networks.
Online collaboration platforms
Collaboration platforms allow remote teams to collaborate better, especially when it comes to a joint project with external partners or clients.
They allow the exchange and management of documents and the monitoring of the progress of various tasks, thus helping to achieve goals and complete projects better.
Collaboration platforms, especially in a digital workplace, are the best digital tools to replace real-life collaboration.
Teleconferencing and chat
Digital work from home should not be disconnected from the team and become a personal affair. Thus, it may negatively affect employee motivation and reduce their productivity.
The ability of video conferencing and real-time chats through specific platforms, such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams, were important tools in the quarantine. They allowed the continuation of business activities that required human contact and were deemed risky, such as meetings with suppliers.
They also helped maintain the bond between team members. Finally, they made the transition of new employees to the new work environment more accessible despite them being from home.
Cloud computing services
To support the digital workplace, it was deemed necessary to transfer services to the cloud.
Using the cloud for services increases the accessibility of corporate files and it can also safeguard their security.
Cloud technology means purchasing additional computing power by placing a server in the cloud or purchasing some SaaS software with a subscription.
In the first case, the responsibility for maintenance and management rests with the company itself. In contrast, in the second, the above responsibility passes to third parties and is included in the service provided.
The last case raises many questions about personal and sensitive corporate data security. However, many specialized cloud service providers have invested heavily in data security. So, you shouldn’t worry about that.
Creating a digital workplace was necessary during the pandemic to continue business activity uninterrupted.
Businesses with good digital transformation levels faced the least difficulties coping with the new conditions compared to those who did not know what digitalization or automation was. When they discovered the technologies they needed and created the proper infrastructure to enable a digital workplace, they had already lost valuable time and money.
Typically, the key technologies that digital workplace required to be feasible were:
- The connectivity
- Online collaboration platforms
- Teleconferencing and chat
- Cloud computing services
These are just a tiny sample of the technologies required during the pandemic. Of course, depending on the sector of activity of each company, there are complementary technologies or software that can make work more accessible, such as through automation, the internet, or remotely.
With telecommuting or hybrid work models still in place, employees can work wherever they want. Although the home is ideal for many, since one can avoid commuting from home to work, it is not for everyone. The JOIST coworking space is a perfect solution for those who are still telecommuting and prefer to work outside the home.
Every professional can find the ideal space for them, whether shared or private, with the professional equipment they need, fast internet, and access to a printer.
If the above sounds ideal to you, join the JOIST community now.
For any information, you can contact us at email@example.com .