To thrive in a sustained telecommuting environment, we need to be able to pivot our approach from spot fixes to a truly Digital experience.
“COVID-19 has given the world a crash course on Digital”, said a Centre Head of one of the global capabilities centers (GCCs) recently. However, 30% of the GCCs believed they were not technologically equipped to sustain telecommuting.
In our conversations earlier this year with GCCs, over 80% of them said they are launching Digital initiatives as a part of Technology agenda for 2020. As the COVID-19 impact was felt across the world, those who had invested in Technology early (laptop population, collaboration tools, cloud based infrastructure, robust cyber security framework, investments in VPN/VDI and network resilience) were able to adopt a virtual working environment with far less disruption, than those who did not.
Today, with almost 100% of the workforce in a remote working environment across the industry, the GCCs are reporting productivity which was better than those reported prior to the lockdown. Virtual employee engagement, virtual recruitment, virtual learning, etc. are the new buzz words. However, we continue to be functioning in a state of survival. To be able to thrive in a sustained telecommuting environment, we need to be able to pivot our approach from spot fixes, to a truly Digital experience to our employees. Some of the key trends, which will shape the landscape as we move from the ‘Now’ to the ‘Next’ and the ‘Beyond’, are explored below.
A ‘human centric’ self-service model for our people
A recent MIT CIST Research Study* shows that investing in the right work environment and building the right behaviours helps employees deliver a better customer experience (two times the average NPS score), twice the amount of innovation and about a 26% rise in profitability for the organization.
The hire to retire journey is a key part of the employee experience. With a large telecommuting workforce, it is even more important to make every employee interaction intuitive and delightful. The use of AI, automation and digital in key employee processes help transform the overall experience and help ease the anxiety of employees especially that have started new phases in their careers from their homes as opposed to the offices of their employer.
Virtual collaboration highlighted
Futuristic videos of tasks assigned flashing on wristbands and people walking into co-working spaces to sync up with team members across the world through video conferencing apps are now our reality. All the apps are now on our phones and the workplace is where the person is. MS Office has led the way in creating phone-friendly applications for its entire suite of offerings, making the laptop to phone experience seamless. As we slowly adapt to these new ways of working, technology companies are adding AR/VR, personalization and flexibility at double the speed. GCCs need to leverage this to engage people to deliver their best and optimize the virtualization model that they want to embark on and not let collaboration become a sticking point in their journey to the future.
Lights out on transactions
Across our discussions, GCCs maintained that automation continues to be a focus in their spends, despite upcoming cost pressures. Use of RPA as been widespread. However, the focus is now on Intelligent Automation (IA) and looking at ‘touchless’ processes to move the needle on creating a BOT workforce to manage transaction processing. Increasing number of GCCs already have a centralized CoE to bring synergies in the development, deployment and monitoring of IA across the GCCs. Analytics, NLP and ML based automation to provide real-time reporting and decision-making is a sought-after service. GCCs are now becoming a Digital incubation engine to build and support deployment in their customer-facing organizations as well.