Let us consider the popular, frothy Disney flick High School Musical.  (Stay with me, this is going somewhere.)  The film goes to rather theatrical lengths to portray the cliques that commonly spring up within a school environment.  Each has its own values, rules and interests, and by unwritten social law, none co-operates or even interacts with another.  That is, until our two protagonists break all the rules and come together to belt out a few songs.  Yes, of course all the students see the light, realise that they are “all in this together,” and have a generally merry time at the end.  Sadly, that kind of spontaneous epiphany is not so common at enterprise level, though the cliques themselves certainly are.

Building bridges between workplace cliques is crucial to growth.  This is particularly the case when it comes to the issue of modern industrial technology.  To make technology a productive investment, the departments overseeing facility, people and IT must have a joint, concerted strategy.

Clamour For Tech

The progression towards a tech-driven economy is primarily a generational change, propelled by a “millennial” cohort expecting information consistently at its fingertips.  They are also conditioned to expect a workplace that encourages collaboration.  These relative youngsters constitute a growing proportion of the global workforce, which makes the shift towards tech-savvy business inevitable.

As such, the enterprise is understandably looking towards the likes of connectivity, cloud computing and fresh forms of face-to-face interaction.  Already the benefits of a more mobile, flexible and dynamic working style have realised positive effects on morale and output, according to various academic studies.  The challenge, then, is to bring separate office cliques around an agreed plan.

Catalyst Of Collaboration

When the enterprise goes through major reinventions, such as an office move, board change, acquisition or merger, that precipitates the process of technological integration.  It also invites conflicting internal standards and interests.  In the case of mergers, the potential for conflicting standards or interests is obviously even higher while the two companies develop an understanding.

The initial consultation of any technical project examines a number of things.  Who dictates what is best for workers?  What areas of the enterprise currently feel the pinch?  Where does technology currently lose sync?

Ultimately, it determines how closely facilities, people and technology are intertwined within the business.  The tangible aspects of meeting room technology installation concern them all, particularly in terms of hardware.  Building management have to assess how the technology can co-exist with current infrastructure, and how the workspace may change in accordance with a technology initiative.  HR have to work out what benefit such technology can bring for the business’ staff.  IT have to understand and configure the software elements of the project.  Each has to understand the role of the CIO, CTO, HR and so on.  The more overlap that exists between these three in driving an IT strategy, the more the enterprise can move forward.

A photo by Alejandro Escamilla. unsplash.com/photos/BbQLHCpVUqA

The Best Thing For The Workforce

Design and technology have to complement each other, or the initiative will never work.  As with any investment, it will be a waste if not implemented and utilised appropriately.  In some cases, it can end up not being used at all.  That comes as a result of poor planning and understanding between office cliques.  However, a strong understanding of the nexus between facilities, people and technology brings manifold benefits to an ambitious enterprise.

Those benefits include more frequent and productive use of meeting rooms.  When data is at its more accessible, less time is wasted in presenting the desired information.  Moreover, personnel absence is less of an issue in meetings with, for instance, appropriate audio-visual equipment.  This evolves into a broader point about workers’ geographical dependence.  Mobile, agile working is a rapidly evolving cornerstone of the contemporary workplace.  It increases day-to-day interaction between staff within the office, and allows any member to stay in the loop – wherever they are.

This requires trust from an employer but the flexibility, to move and collaborate, granted to employees suits them.  On an individual level, this transmits a positive message to present staff and future recruits, about the direction of the enterprise.  Furthermore, it maintains the relevance of the collective venture within a broader business context.  In many cases, the increased efficiency and flexibility of working will even offer the enterprise a competitive advantage.  The degree of that advantage will depend on the state of the industry to which that enterprise belongs.  In every instance, however, a successful technology industry thrives on a mutual understanding between facilities, people and technology.  Understand each other.  Even if you have to warble through a couple of Disney tunes first.

 

 

Viastak work to support businesses looking to leverage technology, in order to streamline the way they operate.  We believe in creating flexible, dynamic enterprises that are equipped to deal with the demands of the modern global economy.  To find out more, please get in touch.