07/01/2014

by Richard Acreman, CEO of WM360

Recent years have seen very restrained IT budgets but, heading into 2014, there appears to be an air of optimism and businesses are beginning to think carefully about how they can get the most out of their IT budgets in the coming year. As such, we’ve identified three key areas that businesses simply can’t ignore.

Social

Amazingly, many large enterprises are still using siloed legacy systems that hamper communication across the business and restrict employees in what they can do with the technology available to them. All businesses need to pay attention to social functionality when updating their IT systems as this will soon become a key differentiator in attracting and retaining talent.

Innovation in this area can be used to create user interfaces that are similar to employees’ favourite consumer websites, along with new ways of communicating across the business. Breaking down barriers between different areas of a business in this way can have a positive impact on performance, not only for individuals but also for the business as a whole.

Mobile

Whilst many businesses now have mobile friendly consumer facing websites, internal communications often lack this same mobile capability.
The rapid growth in bring-your-own-device (BYOD) over the past few years has meant that employees now expect the workplace to provide applications that they can access from their own device. Borders between business and personal life are blurring, which means that businesses should provide employees with the tools they need to benefit from the same positive experiences they have when using their favourite consumer websites and apps.

Forward-thinking business that make investments in improving the internal mobile experience and invest in these tools now can make aspects of their employees’ jobs much easier, faster and more enjoyable.

Gamification

As more and more business processes and functions become digitalised, there is a growing need — and demand — for gamification in the workplace. Gamification can be integrated with a company’s social and mobile strategies to encourage participation from all areas of the business and can support key business objectives and metrics.
When used correctly, gamification can animate even the most tedious of tasks, and can be extremely effective in motivating employees.

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