This article originally appeared in Technative.io.
In the age of remote working, IT is now vital to ensure the success and running of organizations.
Even with work almost entirely digital, there is still a considerable gap between the optimized and seamless services IT teams aim to deliver, and the actual quality of the digital experiences of employees. In a recent study, 96% of technology executives agree that digital employee experience (DEX) is an essential part of what IT teams do, yet more than a third (34%) rely on manual methods to collect experience information and nearly half (46%) don’t measure their employees’ digital experience at all. If you’re not measuring your employee’s experiences, how can you ensure that this essential element is maintained?
Too often IT teams are one step behind, playing catch up with their employees’ IT problems. Systems look good, all signs point to green, but bluescreens, application failures and slow interfaces cause dissatisfaction. Over time as a result there has been a culture shift; many employees will fail to report technical issues, losing trust in IT’s ability to help, or perceiving the process as lengthy and frustrating. A survey released in 2020 revealed that workers report just over half of all the technical issues they face.
The rapid transition to working from home in 2020 only exasperated these IT cracks further, introducing new problems like messaging application failure, slow internet, or video calls dropping which can cut off employee communication entirely. In a recent study, 81% of employees say they either don’t want to go back to the office or would prefer a hybrid schedule from now on, Therefore with remote or hybrid working here to stay, it will be important for IT teams to prioritise gaining visibility and insight into the digital experiences of employees, while taking a more proactive and forward-thinking approach to technical solutions.
The smartest and most effective way to prevent disruption and avoid IT downtime, whilst improving the employee experience from ‘anywhere’, is to identify and automatically resolve problems before they become service impacting issues. It is now possible to remove employees from any involvement in many regular and persistent disruptions impacting productivity. Using employees either as a monitoring system for IT or in the fix scenario should be considered a thing of the past.
So, employee ‘zero touch’ – is this a dream or reality? It will be a reality as there will be far less need to contact the IT team. Involvement of employees in resolving IT issues is definitely reducing, whether by lack of trust or otherwise, and is going down the path to continue to do so. Real time analytics as a data source is key in enabling intelligent focus on the issues that occur the most. IT teams can then apply fixes with remote actions for employees automatically, before employees realise there is even an issue at all.
There are a wide variety of issues that impact many businesses, including those related to high log on times, performance of collaboration services, software compliance and even incorrect resolution of customer interfaces. Any of these can escalate to kill productivity company wide and quickly bump up IT ticket count. The following two examples showcase how those disruptions were remedied by a more proactive IT approach.
Take the example of a law firm, where IT and employees now benefit from this proactive approach. One key IT issue was that critical software was opening incorrectly and minimized, always causing a support ticket and a poor employee experience. A remote action is now able to detect this issue by checking the registry, and can change the value to automatically remediate the issue, thus reducing productivity impact and the need for raising a support ticket.
At this large national retailer in store screens for customer use were displaying at the wrong resolution, which made a higher number of them unusable. This directly impacted trading and their bottom line. In order to solve this, a remote action has been put in place which runs to detect the resolution. If it was incorrect, it would resolve this to the correct setting automatically. This results in fewer tickets and improved satisfaction for employees.
Outdated or non-compliant devices are responsible for a myriad of potential IT issues, from slow performance and application instability to security weaknesses. Despite their impact, they remain one of the areas which IT teams notoriously struggle to identify and fix. This problem is even harder when teams are working across multiple network and device versions.
In the majority of cases, IT teams manually resolve outdated devices or applications on an individual basis, as their visibility of issues is limited to when employees submit tickets.Acting proactively to prevent outdated issues would minimise disruption and improve resource efficiency. The answer lies again in real-time monitoring and automated self-help campaigns.
For example, a proactive IT team could remotely identify devices that required updates, and deploy targeted restart alerts. A simple click by the employee could trigger a forced update, stopping the issue in its tracks before it could get started and save the IT team hours of productivity.
By keeping every device in their landscape compliant and updated, IT teams can avoid future catastrophe and easily maintain a high standard of Digital Employee Experience.
As we move forward into a future where WFA (work from anywhere) and hybrid home-office working is the norm, it’s imperative that IT teams are one step ahead of technical issues as organizations cannot afford to be playing catch-up in this area. Employees should be able to rely on a seamless digital experience to collaborate with colleagues and remain productive.
By adopting a proactive approach based on real-time analytics to inform targeted alerts, problems can be preemptively resolved by employees themselves or by IT detecting and automating the solution completely, removing the need for any employee involvement. Through engaging the workforce in this way, IT can become a source of positive employee sentiment, rather than a topic synonymous with disruption or confusion.