Over the last two years, the COVID-19 outbreak has accelerated the technological transformation of many office-based workers, causing them to change their work habits and rely on video conferencing and collaboration software to get the job done. I was forced to do that.
Now it’s time to focus on the frontline workers, According to the latest information from Microsoft, 41% do not have access to the required technology. Work Trend Index Special Report on Frontline Workers.. Based on a global survey of 9,600 front-line workers in eight countries in eight industries unable to work remotely, the study is designed to help business leaders navigate changing workplaces. It has been.
Jared Spataro, Microsoft’s Corporate Vice President of Contemporary Operations, said in a briefing last week that the company generally focuses on “information workers,” but wants to extend that focus to frontline workers. rice field. They make up more than 80% of the world’s workforce, or about 2 billion people worldwide.
“Microsoft’s mission is much broader than just information workers. We are serious about helping everyone in every organization on the planet achieve more. “Spataro said.
This is important, said Angela Aschenden, Chief Analyst for Workplace Transformation at CCS Insight. This is because technology was a big plus for frontline workers during the pandemic.
“What the pandemic did was expose the importance of this large group of workers to their business. They were often the only ones that kept the business going and worked remotely from a business perspective. Can’t or is exposed to the virus through work. “
Frontline workers include frontline workers in retail, manufacturing, hospitality, and healthcare.
Microsoft’s research has highlighted a number of challenges. The big problem is the need to balance employee well-being with business growth. Fifty-one percent of those surveyed say that those in front-line, non-managerial positions do not feel value, and 58% believe that work-related stress will remain the same or worsen in 2022.
Companies that rely on frontline workers Mass retirement, I’ve seen a record number of employees quit their jobs in search of better opportunities. Like office-based colleagues, front-line workers cite better salaries, work-life balance, benefits, and flexibility as the main reasons to consider changing jobs. Of the eight industries Microsoft surveyed, seven are above pre-pandemic recruitment levels, according to LinkedIn data.
Despite the challenges faced by front-line workers, many surveyed are optimistic that technology can improve their day-to-day work experience. When asked what would help reduce worker stress, technology was ranked behind wages and PTOs and before benefits. In addition, 63% say they are excited about the employment opportunities created by technology.
“There is unprecedented stress, [Microsoft] I believe we can actually do better by prioritizing [frontline] Employees, “said Spataro. “In other words, a strong frontline means better bottom line. Tailoring your business to the needs of your employees not only actually produces happier and better employees, but also really better business outcomes. We think it will be created. “
In addition to the overall optimism, many respondents have raised technology-related concerns. Forty-six percent said they were afraid of unemployment if they didn’t adapt to the new technology, and 55% said they needed to learn how to use the new technology in the workplace without formal training.
According to Ashenden, the main problem is that innovation over the last two decades has focused primarily on desk-based employees, especially when it comes to productivity and collaboration. As a result, frontline worker tools have not evolved and are often obsolete.
“Some companies avoid this by combining the technologies themselves or by trying to adopt technologies designed for desk-based workers,” she said. -Off-the-shelf solutions designed specifically for this group of workers.
“The increased awareness and understanding brought about by the pandemic has motivated companies to invest in these solutions.”
Productivity and the role of Microsoft Teams
While conducting the research, Microsoft explored productivity patterns and how Microsoft Teams is increasingly being used as a communication hub. Telemetry data shows that between March 2020 and November 2021, Microsoft Teams monthly usage at the forefront increased by 400%.
While team-like platforms weren’t necessarily developed with front-line workers in mind, many non-desk-based employees use the tools traditionally found in the office. For example, the Remote Assistance application allows employees to provide support to their customers and partners without actually meeting them in person. Virtual conferencing technology also enables sales reps to stay connected to their customers. In addition, you can reach more customers every day, accelerating your sales cycle.
Regarding concerns about worker training, Aschenden said it wasn’t just a problem for front-line workers. “The tools are intuitive, and it is often assumed that people can understand how to use the tools themselves or learn from colleagues. In fact, this is for organizations to get the tools. It means struggling. The full value from technology due to process and inconsistency.
“It also limits hiring because of the risk of employee dissatisfaction, which leads to looking for other” better “alternatives that employees believe will meet their needs more effectively. When application fragmentation gets worse. “
With that in mind, this week’s Microsoft Announced updates for Viva and Microsoft Teams platforms It targets the frontline role.
The Microsoft Teams walkie-talkie app is now available on Zebra, Crosscall, and HMD Global’s Nokia devices, enabling employees to use high-tech, push-to-talk transceivers, regardless of the device they’re using.
Microsoft has also added virtual appointments to Teams to provide real-time updates on latency, missing appointments, and staffing delays.
Microsoft Teams’ Viva Connections app integrates with strategic partners such as Workday and Expressive to give you easy access to your critical resources and bring your payroll and HR resources together in one place. Updates to the Viva Learning app allow frontline employees to discover, share, and track learning content within their teams for more consistent training across the workplace.
Ashenden said it’s important for Microsoft to see front-line workers as a strategic group of product development strategies, rather than a one-off opportunity.
“In the last few years, we’ve seen that new features for this audience are slowly emerging in Dynamics 365 applications as well as teams, investing in WorkIndex research to understand the emotions of frontline workers. T …, “She said.
“It’s great to see the Viva product team working with this group as well. Microsoft’s approach with all these tools is tailored to enterprises of all types of workers (information workers or front lines). To be able to implement one solution that can be built. Experiences and capabilities to support different groups. This allows frontline workers and information, especially when it comes to connectivity, communication, and knowledge sharing across the organization. You can avoid technical gaps between workers. “
Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.
Microsoft is focusing on frontline workers by tweaking Teams
Source link Microsoft is focusing on frontline workers by tweaking Teams