If you work in an office environment, you’re bound to encounter some new technology every once in a while. Whether it’s the latest software your company’s been using, or just a new machine that needs to be learned and put into practice, knowing how to use these technologies is important both for personal and business reasons.
This post aims to cover all of this ground: We’ll cover what technology is used in the workplace, what sorts of technologies are available now and what they can do, how they can make office life much easier (or more difficult), the various pros and cons these techs have on employees, plus some tips for dealing with them effectively.
What Is Technology In The Workplace
The term “technology” is a pretty broad term, and it covers a lot of territory. In the small business community, technology can be used to refer to anything from computers and software to file storage devices and digital displays.
But the most relevant one for this article is definitely computer technology; everything from operating systems, software, hardware (computers, printers), and internet connections.
By 2023, 65% of the world’s population will be covered by data privacy legislation.
The tech you’ll encounter most often are ones that allow for more efficient office tasks such as word processing, spreadsheets, emailing, presentations and so on. Some of these will be familiar to you; others less so. Some are related to other technologies as well, such as the cloud and virtualization.
Importance Of Technology In The Workplace
Though some of the tech in your workplace might seem a little on the strange side, like virtual reality headsets and aerial drones, there’s something that’s still important that can’t be understated:
There is a lot of focus being placed on this new tech now because there’s a good chance you won’t need to use it for years. This creates plenty of time for initial confusion and resistance (overcoming which will take some time), but ultimately you’ll be looking at the benefits it has for your company.
Wearable technology boosts workplace productivity and happiness by 8.5% and 3.5%, respectively.
This new tech may not be as exciting as some would have you believe, but it could transform your office from day one.
Risks Of Technology In The Workplace
It has also, controversially, led to less privacy, as companies strive to keep track of their remote employees and ensure the protection of important data. Certain software and applications can help your teams review, analyze, and securely store overwhelming amounts of sensitive data across your organization and third-party systems.
60% of organisations will choose a blended work approach following the pandemic.
A company should implement innovative technology as a safe haven against such breaches of security. While the adoption of technology is critical to the success of a modern workplace , the upkeep of that technology is just as important to ensure operations remain efficient and day-to-day processes are not interrupted.
After all, nearly 9 out of 10 – or 88% – of all data breaches are caused by human error. Increase Productivity It’s important to study and utilize different hardware and software solutions that can improve employee productivity .
1. Security Issues
Though technology is meant to make life easier, there are always risks associated with connecting to machines and the internet; there hasn’t been a system that can truly protect against this.
But there are new measures being put in place every day to make sure it’s safe from your devices and online, so taking care of your security is important. System backups, anti-virus software and firewalls are just some of the ways you can do this.
When it comes to security issues, there are two different types: those that come with connecting to the internet and those that come with the business itself.
2. Interrupting Your Employee’s Personal Lives
Though this might seem like a good thing, this is bound to cause some problems for the employee once he or she goes home for the day; if you’re sending more important emails and messages through virtual reality headsets, you’ll have to make sure he or she can log off when they have to. That could lead to employees spending a lot of time away from their families and personal lives.
You need to keep these disruptions in mind when thinking about how technology can work for your company, especially if it’s going to interrupt an employee’s normal work schedule.
This will definitely be an issue with new tech that doesn’t really allow for it. In order to make the employee’s lives as easy as possible, you’ll have to find ways to work around this problem.
3. Paying Employees For Their Work
This is something that many working professionals don’t really want to think about, but it’s definitely going on right now: You’re paying your employees for their work, and with the introduction of new technology in the workplace, you’re likely going to have less of them working the same amount of time you were before.
You may have to hire more staff or create a new schedule where everyone works less, but it depends on the type of technology you’re going to use.
The typical person has more than three internet-connected devices.
Either way, you’ll have to be sure your employees will still receive a paycheck at the end of each week. Some people might not even think about this when they’re thinking about how tech can make life easier for them, but it’s an important factor if you want to keep your business running smoothly on a day-to-day basis.
4. Disregarding The Workplace Culture
The workplace culture is a big thing in any company; you’ll need to make sure that the new tech you’re bringing into the office doesn’t conflict with it. Some companies may have a very open environment, but others are more closed off and focused on privacy.
When it comes to your business culture, especially if you have a company that’s fairly strict with its rules and values, tech in the workplace can be risky because it can disrupt those rules and values.
Even introducing something minor like using smartphones at work could cause some problems in this respect if your company doesn’t want employees being distracted by text messages or games. It’s a good idea to gauge how your employees feel about the tech you want to introduce before you start using it.
5. Changing Culture
There are lots of things that can cause the culture of a company to change, and new technology could be one of them; this is especially true if everyone else is using it. If you’re introducing something in the workplace that everybody else is using, like an office phone system with virtual assistants or Amazon Echo Dots, then people will be more likely to defect from what they’ve been doing in their own time, and that might lead to bad habits; like watching Netflix or playing games at work instead of working even harder.
But you need to keep in mind that this doesn’t always have to be seen as a negative thing; sometimes a new phone system or virtual assistant can make things much easier for everyone, so you’ll just have to make sure the use of it is regulated and controlled.
6. Loss Of Personal Connection Between Employees And Management
Technology has been making work more convenient, but it’s hard to say whether or not it’s making relationships between employees and management more convenient or less convenient.
As time goes on, there is a chance that personal connections will inevitably weaken because nobody wants to talk about anything instead of communicating through text messages or emails. That could lead to some problems because your company may have a new way for things to go wrong, and you’ll need to get everyone accustomed to it.
That also depends on the type of technology you’re looking at; some might make better connections, while others could make things very impersonal and uninviting.
All in all, you’ll want to be aware of this so that you can easily keep it in mind when making the decision about how your business will use its new tech.
7. The Amount Of Strain On Productivity
As the number of employees in a company increases and people start to use new technology, there’s bound to be an increase in stress among workers. The idea is that it doesn’t have to increase productivity, but it could; with new tech and the innovative ideas they bring, more can get done in less time.
But this is something you need to keep in mind when thinking about how it can help your business; if you have too many employees and not enough work for them to do, then putting new technology in place might not be best for everyone right off the bat.
So, you’ll want to keep an eye on how the technology is going to affect your employees. That way you can gauge whether or not it’s going to be a good idea to implement it into the workplace and keep productivity as high as possible.
Using new technology in your business can definitely have its benefits, but there are some things you need to think about before introducing it into the workplace. If you don’t take these factors into consideration, then implementing something could become more stressful than helpful. So, before you go asking what technologies can help your business run more smoothly, make sure you’re ready for them and that they will have the results you’re looking for.
Benefits Of Technology In The Workplace
If your organization is not leveraging modern technology solutions today, it has likely already fallen behind when compared to your competition. There are numerous benefits of technology in the workplace .
Cloud-based platforms such as Microsoft Teams , Zoom, and others continue to provide a pathway for organizations to remain connected and achieve a level of communication that is arguably better than pre-pandemic and the shift to remote work.
The benefits of technology are far-reaching and impact almost every business unit across an organization, from sales and marketing to accounting and human resources.
By 2025, digital transformation investments will total $2.8 trillion.
As the percent age of jobs that use technology increases, a surprising number of people are optimistic about workplace automation. As the COVID-19 pandemic overturned the work models we’ve relied on for decades, businesses had to rush to adopt new technologies and improve their digital infrastructure nearly overnight.
Innovations and workplace trends of change will significantly impact our lives in the coming decades, technology in the workplace statistics indicate. Processes that were once manual and time-consuming can now be achieved in a quick and efficient manner with digital tools, applications, and systems. Job satisfaction and employee engagement are indicators managers use to understand their workforce.
1. Improved Communication
With the use of new technology, you’ll have a lot more options when it comes to communication. You’ll be able to talk to anyone anywhere at any time, and anyone will be able to talk to you at any time.
About 70% of Americans are hopeful about rising workplace automation.
You can use an office phone system with virtual assistants or an Amazon Echo Dot when you want to improve communication among your employees and still have some privacy.
But on top of that, the texts and emails will be much easier for people who are on different shifts and working in different locations; these types of improvements will definitely help your business run smoothly by making sure everyone is on the same page.
2. Greater Flexibility
Flexibility is another great benefit of new technology. If you want to be able to make your employees feel more comfortable, then you can use an office phone system or virtual assistant that allows people to use their personal devices in the office. You can even make it so that everyone can take a midday break without having to go out into the real world.
But on top of that, you can create a virtual team where everyone works together remotely and get work done with ease by way of Slack or email. Technology is definitely helping make working in the workplace a lot more convenient, and this will help increase productivity as well; which will definitely help you keep up with your competition.
3. Increased Productivity
There’s no denying that technology is making work a lot more convenient.
You’ll be able to communicate with others easier, give your employees flexibility, and push them to do a lot more work in a shorter amount of time; all of this can help you be more productive, which will get your business to the next level within no time
4. New Prizes & Awards
People will start to use new technology because of the benefits that come with it, but then they’ll start to use it because they want the novelty of the new experience. There’s no doubt that the excitement about using a new piece of tech will lead to more use; but then people might also be using it because they want to brag about it or make their coworkers jealous.
This is something you really need to consider when thinking about what technologies can help your business; if you’re introducing something that’s going to cause some frustration among employees, like a drone for everyone at once, then you have a good point for taking a step back and making adjustments.
5. Increased Employee Engagement
Something else you need to consider when it comes to technology is that people will want and need to be more engaged with what’s going on around them; the more they participate, the more they’ll feel like an important part of the workplace.
So, this means that if you implement things like conference calls with employees, put in a video conference system, or have virtual assistants at every employee’s disposal; these are ways that you can get each person involved and make them feel as if they’re an important part of your company.
6. Increased Employee Motivation
With the new technology you implement, your employees will also feel as if they’re important, which will make them more motivated to do their job and help your company get to where it wants to be.
But on top of that, there are a lot of different things you can do to increase employee motivation; for example, you can use a manager app such as Slack or Hubstaff that has all the information in one place.
This is something you might want to consider when thinking about what technologies can help your business; having all information in one place could make employees feel more connected and important.
7. Enhanced Customer Service
When you want to provide good customer service, technology will definitely help. You’ll be able to keep up with orders in your inventory and make sure that everyone gets what they need quickly; this is something technology can do for you pretty easily.
But on top of that, it can also improve customer service by doing things like monitoring social media and responding to anyone who has questions about your business. It’s not always the best idea to respond to comments on social media, but you can use a robot that’s monitoring what people are saying about your company to see if there are any issues or concerns that need addressed right away.
8. Increased Innovation
Lastly, technology is helping to create new and innovative ways of doing business; if you have an idea for something, making it a reality becomes much easier when you have the right tech behind it.
You’ll be able to create new features that wasn’t available before and get more out of your business by streamlining operations and getting employees more engaged.
For many, the future of technology in the workplace is digital signage. This tech allows for the displaying of relevant information at all times, which can replace a lot of wasted office time spent making pointless phone calls. You could have a big screen in your office listening to messages, or you could have it link directly to an answering machine and let it do all that work for you, but I don’t think that’s going to fly with anybody.
Another major change is likely to be wearable tech like smart watches and other similar devices; actually these already existed for a little while. Smart watches are now commonplace, and people are still raving about their usefulness when you’re trying to multitask in the workplace.
The real trick is going to be unleashing all that tech into the hands of your employees. How you do it will depend on the culture of your company, but there’s a good chance that you’ll have to at least get some of your staff trained on how to use the new tech. You don’t want them fumbling with it or dropping phone calls in their rush to get through as much work as possible.