There can be little question that technology is rapidly transforming business and is a key to competitive advantage for many companies. But just throwing technology at your staff won’t magically solve problems or open up opportunities.
Survey data suggest that there needs to be a rhyme and reason behind technology adoption decisions, particularly when it comes to younger workers.
Workers Want Technology to Help Them
Let’s start with the basic idea that your employees do see value in technology. According to the 2018-2019 State of Work Report survey published by WorkFront, on average, employees believe 40% of their work should be automated.
Additionally, 69% of employees believe that automation will give them more time to perform their primary job responsibilities. Employees also overwhelmingly believe that moving toward more automation will let them think of work in more innovative ways (83%). And they say that they are excited to learn new things as the workforce moves towards more automation (82%).
But Don’t Overwhelm Them …
At the same time, 31% of employees say they feel like their companies require them to use too many technology tools or solutions. If we break it down by generation, 43% of Millennials feel this way, compared to just 25% of Baby Boomers.
The key word in the survey question, in our opinion, is ‘requires.’ Employers should try to make new technologies available to employees, but they should be careful about making the use of these technologies mandatory whenever possible.
Certainly, there are some technologies that may require the entire office to transition, such as new communications systems; however, others might be more conducive to allowing employees to adopt or not at their own pace.
Technology can be a great boost to productivity, communication, and organization. It can also frustrate employees and disrupt existing processes and practices if not implemented properly.
Managers and business leaders need to think carefully about large-scale technology introductions in their organizations before making a leap that is difficult to walk back from.