“They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself.”

Andy Warhol

After months of uncertainty, it’s that time. Businesses across the country are starting to return to the offices, keen to get back that familiar sense of normal. But what even is normal now? It’s definitely changed – and this change is here to stay. So what does the future of work look like for you?

Have you like many other businesses put investing in digital transformation on the back burner?Over these past few months, digital transformation has burst onto the stage front and centre in a big way. For many there has been an immediate digital change needed to keep organisations running and help teams work together and access the information they need wherever they’re working from.

One thing’s for sure though – people have shown they’re far more adaptable and capable than we give them credit for. As are businesses.

When lockdown hit, there was no real time to prepare. We were left with one choice; adapt. And companies everywhere got straight to it in implementing digital change. Microsoft Teams, SharePoint, Zoom – everyone quickly got to grips using these platforms, and it wasn’t long before logging into these daily became second nature.

Now, as businesses are encouraged to start heading back the office, the question is – what comes next for your digital transformation journey?

Keep the changes you’ve made

The likes of Microsoft Teams and SharePoint have proven how useful they can be, whether you’re based in the office or working remotely. You can access all your data with ease, communicate with colleagues, and keep track of your projects without any hassle. The best part is you can do all this from any device, so whether you’re doing a phased return to the office, or parts of your team keep working elsewhere, these hybrid tools give you the same strong business continuity.

One thing to remember is that the likes of Teams and SharePoint are just the first step in your digital transformation journey. There are so many tools out there which take digital transformation beyond just communication and remote working if you truly want to stay competitive.

The future is flexible working

While you might be ready to get all your teams back together working in one place, working from home can actually be better for people’s well-being. Research from Eskenzi finds that 91% of office workers in the UK want to work from home at least part time.

The old myth says people are less productive when working from home. But a Cartridge People study shows 50% of people say they actually get through more work when at home than they do in the office. Working from home lets people focus on work without some of the distractions and regular interruptions that happen in an office.

Giving your teams the option to work from home – at least some of the time lets them know you value and trust them and gives them the power to work in the best way for them, which helps increase employee retention.

Keep your digital transformation journey moving forward

Are you taking advantage of what digital transformation brings to the table, beyond just communication tools? Now you know your people are perfectly capable of learning new systems. And it isn’t all that hard to get them up and running either. It really doesn’t need to be a long, painful process to put new solutions in place and get everyone using them.

When your teams had no choice but to start using new tools, they couldn’t fall back into old habits. That’s why now is the time to keep up the momentum – your teams have seen how easy it is to start working in a new way – and how it can benefit them too. Adopting new tech is all about showing your teams the value in the new changes you bring in. So it’s your time to think about what you want your organisation’s future to look like.

What comes next for you?

You’ve been all about digital change these past few months, so where do you go from here? Plenty of companies have kicked off with communication-based digital transformation, but that’s just the start. The ones who ll really have that edge are those who are ready to take that jump and transform their operations to be more competitive and agile.

Transforming your operations sets you up to grow and do more with the same resources. Upping your operational efficiency this way creates more time for your teams to focus on what matters for your business; innovation. When your teams aren’t bogged down with all those routine or repetitive tasks, they can use their energy more creatively in ways to drive your business forward, and ultimately increase your competitiveness, growth, and revenue.

So how do you do this? Look for areas and processes that will benefit from more automation. You can then build bespoke low code workflow applications – using tools like Microsoft Power Platform – to get rid of or streamline these manual time-consuming, and mind-numbing, processes. And pretty soon your teams will be working much more efficiently.

The best part of automation is it isn’t looking to replace people or jobs with technology. It just frees up your teams to work more productively so they can help give your business a revenue boost and help you remain competitive.

You can also use advanced analytics and tools such as Power BI to better understand your business, employees, and customers. The knowledge that comes from this data empowers you to serve your customers better. And if you aren’t doing this, your competitors sure will be.

Implementing stronger analytics and bespoke applications for more workflow and automation doesn’t need to be time consuming or expensive. With plenty of new low code platforms on the market, you can train your in-house staff to get using these pretty quickly so soon digital transformation just becomes business as usual.

It’s time to get to it and take that next step in your digital transformation journey. Doing this will make a big difference to your employee experience, while also improving how your business runs. Now more and more companies are looking to digitise parts of their operations, and you need to get ready to make a change, or risk being left behind.

We’re here to help you make the right digital change for your business. Where would you benefit from more digital tools? How can you make sure all your teams adapt to using them? What options will help boost productivity while also reducing operational costs? Our team of specialists can offer you advice and solutions tailored to your organisation’s unique challenges, needs, and goals.

Contact us today to take the next step in your digital journey.

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