iPad laptop

Twenty years ago, early digital natives, the generation who reached adulthood at the turn of the twenty-first century, were some of the first people to discard pen and paper in favour of desktop computers. Digital natives currently account for 23% of the active workforce, and by 2025 this generation will make up 75% of employees.

Nowadays, this generation yearns for a digital workplace powered by technology, mobility and collaboration. Building modern workspaces for digital natives is a pressing business opportunity. Millennials have an “out with the old and in with the new” mind-set. They want to shake up business as they know it while exploiting technology to the max.

This poses a great challenge to enterprise IT, especially as UK adults now spend more time on their mobile devices than traditional desktop PCs. Today’s workers are used to being able to access information simply, easily and timelessly. In stark contrast, they aren’t used to dwelling over difficult to use systems, or complex, old school processes. This is a good thing, because neither are modern customers.

Businesses must consider how quick it is for their employees to navigate enterprise systems. Faster digital processes make for faster customer satisfaction and happier employees. As more and more digital natives enter the workplace, they are likely to be increasingly frustrated with legacy systems. They want to do the job quickly and as easily as possible to deliver the best customer service.

So, how does IT keep up with and fulfil the customer and career expectations of this tech savvy generation; whilst keeping their best talent on board? The answer is to simplify the enterprise applications this generation has to work with.

Enterprise applications often don’t work logically. Instead many require employees to log onto many different screens to execute a single process. This makes basic tasks seem time-consuming for a generation used to transacting on-the-go. Technology experience is becoming a crucial part of the overall work experience.

As tech-savvy executives invest in tablets and high end desktops, many hope the software on such devices will make their day-to-day jobs easier and more straightforward. This though, is not just a boardroom issue, investing in the wrong technology and offering the wrong tools to the digital native generation of jobseekers could be a deal breaker. Over time it could lead to the best employees considering job offers from those businesses that are ahead of the curve.

For example, we have seen many cases where seasonal or casual workers, who are only employed for a short period of time, within the retail sector, are faced with having to use old and clunky systems. Many of these systems can take up to six months to learn, by which time their contract would’ve ended. Businesses are investing money in recruiting more employees, but they aren’t getting the most value from the employee, as they become increasingly frustrated with the existing systems.

Employees want a platform that is not only simplified but also personalised to the specific tasks required. Micro apps, or Zapps as we at Capriza call them, can be rapidly implemented across an organisation to simplify and optimise business processes. Zapps are designed with the user experience and productivity in mind. Optimising and simplifying the process for the user is a major part of the design stage. Created around a responsive, mobile-first interface, where only one version is needed to work across various platforms, Android, iOS or Windows.

Zapps can work on any device, from desktop computers to smartphones and tablets. Back-end IT systems remain in place, so there’s no downtime and no disruption to existing systems. All the investment around existing security and permissions remain, data is encrypted, and fully compliant so no information is stored on the user’s device, making it secure. Zapps have been deployed across sectors as diverse as financial services, retail, transport, logistics, even more traditional industries and Government bodies, e.g. City of LA.

Investing in the right technology need not mean “Rip and Replace”. Getting the mobilisation and simplification of enterprise applications right will not only improve the productivity of the workforce, but will also help with employee satisfaction and retention.

The new generation of tech-savvy employees is set to dominate the workforce by 2025. They do not want to spend hours completing purchase orders or expense claim forms or wading through unusable systems to run the business. They want to be able to do it at the touch of a finger.

Just like all other aspects of a digital native’s life, technology is there to facilitate and accelerate everyday tasks. Bringing this immediacy and ease of use with proven applications remade specifically for this generation is a no brainer. With Zapps it is easier than you think.

By Russell Acton, VP and General Manager at Capriza