Digital Disruption: The New Workforce and Demanding Customers
The forces of digital disruption and the shifting work styles of young employees are pressuring organizations to become increasingly responsive to both customers’ and employees’ needs. With all the talk about “outside in” and “customer centricity,” it’s imperative not to downplay the engagement and empowerment of employees.
Successful organizations will be the ones that are astute at both—the “Seriously Smart Organizations”—that cultivate and equip the next-generation workforce in new ways to become more responsive to customer expectations and attain (or sustain or regain) competitive advantage.
“Digital disruption” is hitting established organizations hard on three fronts. I already mentioned the customers and employees, but you can add competitors to that list. Whether it’s a digital-only start-up taking a bite out of your market or an innovative incumbent, every organization needs to take a really hard look at being more mobile, more social, more connected, and more automated straight across the enterprise.
Ready or not, somebody in your organization needs to be planning your digital transformation.
Customers and employees are expecting it. In fact, if you’re behind the curve, they might even be starting to lose their patience. Retention of customers and employees could be a one-two punch that could present real problems.
I had the opportunity last week to share the mic with Ian Jacobs at Forrester® in a webinar entitled “Digital Disruption Demands Action: 5 Questions to Ask in the New Workforce Reality.” You can watch the replay here. Together, we tackled 5 questions in 30 minutes:
- What are the characteristics of the new workforce and why are they “reluctant to learn”?
- How have digital disruptions made it more challenging to provide excellent employee-based service?
- What should be done with employee-facing applications to enable and empower employees?
- What kinds of information and context need to be integrated and unified to provide better outcomes with less effort?
- How can this new reality affect recruiting and training and their impact on performance management?
If “digital” is the question, then “technology” is the answer. But digital transformation doesn’t mean digital investment alone. It’s more like thinking “digital first”—just as most of your customers and employees do now.
Do you have to throw out your current technology portfolio? No. Some of it works perfectly fine for what it was intended to do. Check out this piece: Don’t Rip and Replace—Wrap and Renew!
There’s a new generation of apps for Customer Engagement Optimization that complements and enhances much of what you have and helps you turn the corner on your digital transformation. Your front-line employees can have a unified desktop with just-in-time access to all the right data and knowledge, and your customers can have the mobility and self-service experience they expect (nay, demand).
I think digital disruption will bring better outcomes with less effort. That’s my “happy place.” Where’s yours?
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