The Role of Intranet and Office 365 in Accelerating Digital Transformation

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2018-07-16 (2)

Digital transformation is the most popular way now to define the journey for many organizations who are seeking to leverage technology to bring in exponential growth, introducing new services change their own business models or in turn change the customer experience. The focus of digital transformation can be internal and external where the primary impact is experienced outside the company. However, even in those cases where the focus is on transforming the customer experience, it usually requires a similar change within.  Not only do organizations need to change the way they carry out various processes and collaborate they often need to change the mindset of employees about using digital tools.

Intranets and office 365 often prove to be essential for digital transformation driving the internal change required to transform the experience of employees and the customers. Let’s explore the five key ways this happens.

Leading the change

Digital transformation whether it’s from within or outside the company, it requires change management.  In addition, the change management requires an effective digital communication platform, which every employee can easily access and deliver the apt messaging.

An intranet can facilitate the leadership communication to inspire and motivate employees and give the context to any wider change. It also provides very particular information about what’s coming – for example about the new processes, new services and the latest technologies that are being introduced. Ideally, the intranet should also deliver specific and relevant content to different groups.

Of course, effective change management for digital transformation will need more than an intranet, but a successful engaging communication channel is essential.

Breaking down silos – What is Silos?

Usually, the digital transformation needs teams that have not worked together closely earlier to come together through new groups, virtual tools and streamlined processes and workflows. Therefore, a common theme in digital transformation is the removal of silos often made worse due to poor communication and digital channels. These silos act as barriers to digital transformation. A social intranet is a perfect platform to provide the kind of flexible team and group communication and collaboration, which the digital transformation aims at providing. The hierarchical, geographical and the functional silos are no longer a barrier.

Sometimes more efficient processes are also needed. Office 365 and even custom-built requirements can support the specific internal workflows and processes need to establish new external services for customers. For example, teams can start to digitize processes using web forms and workflow.

Being able to work in a more agile manner

Removing silos also open the ability to work in a more agile and speedier manner. This can be important for digital transformation where the ability to react to customer requirements, respond to market conditions and seize the opportunities very quickly can be a real source of competitive advantage.

To be able to react rapidly not only requires digital capabilities which can be deployed quickly to clients but also allows employees to communicate and collaborate quickly and efficiently among each other. Companies who have more traditional lines of communication, usually based on hierarchy may find it very difficult to respond quickly to the market.

An awesome intranet and Office 365 is very essential for facilitating agile working across various locations allowing a team to find out and react to opportunities and then work combined to design and deploy products and services. For example, tools like Microsoft Teams or Wizdom community spaces allow teams to collaborate more easily on projects or incubate ideas and bring them to fruition within Communities of Practice.

Helps in increasing digital literacy and confidence

Digital transformation is as much about a new mindset among employees as it is about working in different ways. The employees need to be comfortable with the idea of using digital tools beyond email, not only to drive any new processes but also to encourage their colleagues to work in that way too. Digitally confident employees can also encourage customers to adopt digital tools.

Increasing digital literacy and the mindset can help the employees to drive in adoption, collaboration, innovation and many other qualities associated with transformation.

A social intranet like Wizdom and some other Office 365 toolset can work very well in getting teams and individuals to tangibly experience the merits of using digital tools, see the chances and get used to working collaboratively.  This can lay the foundation for some of the potentially more intense and complex changes associated with transformation and embed some of the accompanying digital behaviors, which the employees will need.

Drive innovation

Innovation can also be a core part of digital transformation where the organizations develop new ideas to work more efficiently, enhance the customer service and introduce new products and services. It only takes one exceptional idea to have a highly significant impact.

When you deploy an effective intranet and Office 365, you may be making available a sophisticated digital platform to all employees for the first time, including frontline employees who may not have had the access earlier. When everybody can contribute their inputs and give ideas organizations can leverage the insights and knowledge for all parts of the workforce, including those who directly interface with customers and know them the best. Those ideas can lead to digital transformation.

Intranets contribute to the digital transformation

External digital transformation starts from the inside. An intranet makes an important contribution not only as a communication channel but also to enable quicker collaboration, drive innovation and change the mindset of employees.

While considering the digital transformation, it is very important that the organizations don’t just consider the external change required but also the internal changes needed too. Deploying an excellent intranet is a great way to help support and drive digital transformation and change.

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July 6th, 2018 by