Survey: Employees Want Business Technologies to be More Collaborative


The pandemic has cemented collaboration software as the hub for where work gets done, but the daily operations of a business largely happen in other specialized applications, such as software for financial planning, supply-chain management, and managing customer relationships. This can lead to a lot of “invisible” work for employees to bring data, information, and insights to the spaces where colleagues are making decisions and moving projects forward.

Microsoft`s latest survey on business trends compiles input from 2,700 employees and 1,800 business decision makers in the United States, United Kingdom, and Japan across job functions to uncover the ways technology is — or is not — helping them do their work. We found that, while advancements in workplace technology can accelerate employees` ability to take on more meaningful work and reduce office churn, it`s only half the equation in improving worker experience.

Employees are looking for tools that enable collaboration seamlessly, automate repetitive work, and guide with insights, and that can be customized for specific business challenges. Here’s how leaders can invest in these areas to increase efficiency in their day-to-day operations and free up their teams for more important work.

Make collaboration a hub for all kinds of work

Today’s workers demand digital tools that adapt to their unique ways of working. Nearly all workers surveyed (91%) say he works remotely at least one or two days a week. To best support this new world of work, 85% of employees named collaboration tools as one of his most important focuses.

Corporate departments use different software to manage common tasks specific to their role, in addition to the usual productivity and collaboration tools such as email, video conferencing, and chat. increase. Employees expect to be able to ask quick questions in chat, share document links for live editing, and easily schedule virtual calls. However, most surveyed employees are not getting the benefits of collaboration tools because they are not integrated with the data and information they need to do their jobs.

59% say their collaboration tools don’t align with how their teams prefer to work. 64% say their tools are not integrated with their organization’s processes (marketing, finance, sales software, etc.). 72% want their collaboration tools to be compatible because it’s difficult to collaborate across teams.

As a result, people waste time copying data to emails and chats, or looking up multiple colleagues’ numbers. At least seven of his ten respondents cited inaccurate data, the inability to access and share distributed data, and teams working with disparate data sets as the main challenges facing organizations. I’m here. A staggering 86% of employees surveyed said their teams would most benefit from a solution that makes information (documents, business records, customer records, etc.) more accessible across the organization.

Fragmentation of where information resides and where it is shared is highly inefficient. Our research found that these limitations, including departments using a variety of disparate software, lead to more silos that make information sharing difficult (72% of respondents), leading to administrative tasks and redundant, low-value work. It was found to increase rather than decrease (74). % Respondent) %).

Just by “collabifying” applications — like adding a chat capability to the customer relationship management (CRM) system, or the ability to pull in CRM data to chat

— leaders can increase employee satisfaction by reducing time to insights and value within an organization and improving communication.

Customize your business operations with low-code software

Not every problem can be solved with one-size-fits-all enterprise software purchased and deployed across business departments. That`s one reason IT departments are so often overwhelmed by custom software development projects that may not see the light of day, especially when underfunded or added to a stack of other backlogged projects.

Low-code solutions are a great way for business departments to personalize their productivity solutions, bringing together business processes and collaboration.

Low-code innovation is on the rise because it gives everyone developer “superpowers,” enabling sales, marketing, and other employees across the business to improve their processes with little to no coding required. Low-code solutions can help you automate processes to reduce repetitive tasks or use AI capabilities to gain insights directly in your workflows.

Low-code software tools empower employees to solve their own problems. In fact, more than three in four of her surveyed workers (77%) would like to have more access to low-code tools or platforms to build digital solutions that help them reach their goals.

An example of a low-code AI-powered solution is creating a custom document summary function. For example, in the legal department, it can take lawyers hours to read and summarize documents. With low-code automation tools, non-technical lawyers can use natural language commands to create automated processes that extract and summarize content from large documents. The app allows sharing documents to pre-configured distribution lists via email or chat for further collaboration.

Access to low-code tools has proven to be an excellent return on investment, with over 80% of survey respondents saying low-code tools complete tasks that previously required teams of developers independently said it was possible. This is a win-win-win for employees who can now take operational efficiency into their own hands, IT teams who can focus on high-priority projects, and management who wants to reduce technology and development costs. is. In fact, nearly half (46%) of business decision makers surveyed agree that low-code processes allow employees to play a more direct role in their organization’s digital transformation efforts.
rely on artificial intelligence and automation

Adopting AI-powered business solutions is an important step in transforming our workplace culture from one of time spent on “work” to one focused on quality and effectiveness. Repetitive tasks such as data entry, note-taking, report writing, and word processing are essential to running a business, but are not part of an employee’s work time. The value of AI and automation is just beginning to emerge. Nearly 9 in 10 of her survey respondents who use AI and automation in their workplaces feel more fulfilled and can spend more time on the tasks that matter. He also said that if automation features were built into his software for collaboration, such as the ability to automate the creation and sharing of call notes, it would work more seamlessly across teams.

Data entry is becoming a major part of employee roles in all business units. Because data is essential to getting work done. For example, the sales department can use his AI to automatically update databases with key data about customer interactions. This frees up employees to do more meaningful work, such as: B. Write a business proposal.

AI can also help employees solve problems and provide scenario-specific learning opportunities. Take the contact center her agent who is working with the customer to solve the problem over the phone. A lot of information is needed to provide a quality customer experience. For example, the customer’s name and address, purchase history, details of any phone issues, and possible solutions. AI guides agents in real time, providing topics and useful related resources such as product and pricing details, purchase history, and more. Instead of taking notes, agents can focus on conversations by sharing ideas and resources on the fly. AI can also bring experts across the organization into “swarm” chats for real-time problem solving, and use sentiment analysis to provide feedback and coaching tools for continuous learning and improvement in the workplace. It is also useful for

As automation tools become easier and smarter to use, this important capability removes barriers to information access, speeds up workflows and improves employee satisfaction by eliminating mundane tasks.



What businesses can do in 2023 to personalize productivity across departments

The research is clear: Employees want more personalized productivity solutions and assistance from technology to automate manual processes and reports that feel like busy work. They expect their business applications to be collaborative and intelligent. Business leaders can start with some of the following steps:

Get employees involved with digital business investments to empower them to work more effectively, from automating menial processes to tightly integrating collaboration features across organizational software. Evaluate digital capabilities across current productivity, CRM, enterprise resource planning (ERP), and other business software to integrate AI-powered insights and automation into business processes. Take steps to consolidate formerly siloed data on-premises and/or in the cloud, empowering teams to centrally access and share information, gain insights, and drive business action. Leverage the expertise of non-developers and professional developers to collaborate in real time on solutions that enable continuous innovation and efficiency. By empowering non-developers to solve their own technical challenges, we increase velocity, promote autonomy, and ultimately accelerate innovation for your organization’s developers. Create a forum for employees to custom build her apps and share with her IT decision makers and executives that meet business needs.

In today’s economy, leaders want to make the most of their existing technology investments while making sure their employees feel motivated and important to the company’s overall goals. These steps toward the adoption of tools that enable seamless collaboration, automate repetitive tasks, and guide with insights help people focus on the work that matters.


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