I recently tweeted something which was a little flippant and slightly humorous:
So an Intranet is now a Digital Workplace. Time to set my Digital Alarm Clock for the morning. Damn, that one’s been done!
Behind the flippancy and humour there is a serious message. The tweet was prompted by an article I read:
Now while the article does not explicitly say an Intranet is a Digital Workplace there is a strong inference and it is indicative of a trend we see. Yes , my comment on the Digital Alarm Clock is flippant but I have seen an increase for everyone to jump on the Digital bandwagon. Just because people are doing things with technology does not mean it is Digital. An intranet is still an intranet, it’s an internal facing information hub which can also help employees access the tools they need to perform their internal tasks.
But it does beg the question ‘What is a Digital Workplace?’
Well there is some commonality but it depends on the employee. The simplest definition is that the Digital Workplace is one which enables employees to work effectively and free from the traditional constraints of Corporate IT. But does that really mean anything, probably not, it needs a bit more to be meaningful. A Digital Workplace:
– embraces the collapse of the boundaries around Corporate IT, enabling employees to switch seamlessly between personal and work, sometimes the apps are the same but the information is the only differentiation;
– is aware of the speed of change in the technology world and is prepared to set a cadence to provide the benefits of this pace to their employees;
– is always connected, providing employees access to the apps and information at the time they need it;
Ultimately though this means different things to different people. A Police Officer working in a Digital Workplace will benefit from immediate access to intelligence, possibly integrated with GIS tools on Mobile Devices, with the ability to record Case information at the scene of crime. An Oil Rig worker will benefit from being well informed on failure rates on Assets used on their Site, with performance data captured from sensors on the Assets. And then when the inspection is required they have access to all the relevant information on the asset, typically on Mobile Devices.