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Three imperatives for the modern workplace in 2019

19 Dec 2018
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Taking action on digital ethics, combining intelligence and design and preparing for experiences without boundaries are key trends companies need to focus on in 2019 to keep pace in an accelerating digital world, according to new Trendlines research from Avanade.

1. Take action on digital ethics

Ethics has long been a key tenet of most businesses, but the rise of AI and automation increases the potential for unintended consequences and potential ethical challenges.

Those challenges can affect a company’s employees, customers and partners.

According to Avanade research, 89% of global executives say they have encountered an ethical dilemma at work caused by the increased use of smart technologies and digital automation with 87% admitting they are not fully prepared to address the ethical concerns that exist today.

“Companies can no longer simply talk about digital ethics,” says Avanade modern workplace global lead executive Florin Rotar.

“It’s clear that digital ethics is now a board and C-suite focus, and leaders in this arena will need to start developing guiding principles and building ethics-by-design into their work.”

Avanade itself has formed a Digital Ethics Task Force, guiding the company internally and through forums attended by representatives from global companies.

2. Intelligence meets design

Model-driven companies bring design and data science together to create more personalised products and services to better engage their customers.

It’s time to apply these same practices to build an exceptional employee experience.  

Research from the Center for Information Systems Research (CISR) at MIT Sloan School of Management shows that firms with the best employee experience achieve business benefits, including double the customer satisfaction, twice the innovation and 25% greater profitability compared to competitors.

Forward-thinking executives are putting their data scientists and creatives side-by-side on cross-discipline teams at the earliest stages of product and service creation - with a goal of improving both the employee and customer experiences.

“Model-driven companies re-engineer employee experiences to be on par with customer experiences,” says Avanade emerging technology global lead Aaron Reich.

“Getting data scientists and creatives to work together requires organisations to integrate intelligence and design capabilities and toolsets. That collaboration will foster an environment that can drive better employee and customer experiences.”

Avanade is leading the way in solving business problems for clients through its network of digital innovation studios, combining multiple disciplines to build new products and service.

3. Experiences without boundaries

We’re at the dawn of new types of consumer and employee experiences, but many companies are still stuck trying to manage design across desktop and mobile.

The world is quickly moving to a mobile-only society where a device is an extension of a person - from wearables to cars to sensors in walls.

When the experience is always ‘on the go’, it is both physical and virtual.

Creating these immersive experiences without boundaries requires a new mindset and an IT architecture intervention.

According to Avanade research, 80% of IT decision makers believe that not modernising IT systems will negatively impact the long-term growth of their organisation.

“These new experiences require a new mindset in everyone - executives, employees and consumers,” says Avanade advisory and innovation global lead executive Craig Gorsline.

“Companies will have to revamp their IT architecture so consumers and employees can enjoy frictionless experiences that augment their lives with relevant information presented across any platform. It’s time to embrace change.”