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Empowering the Hybrid Workforce: How To Optimize Your Employee Digital Experience Wherever They Work

Empowering the Hybrid Workforce: How To Optimize Your Employee Digital Experience Wherever They Work

The hybrid workforce model spurred by the pandemic isn’t going to recede when the pandemic ends. In a recent Gartner study of company leaders, 82% said they plan to continue allowing occasional remote work as employees return from pandemic-driven lockdowns.

But there’s a problem here. The employee digital experience has not evolved nearly enough over the past year to meet their new way of working. They still struggle with issues such as stable connectivity, easily accessing company networks, receiving IT support, and security protocols.

Now with 12 months of industry and client insights to draw from under COVID, Stratascale has a clearer idea of what makes a positive employee digital experience—which isn’t just critical for productivity and innovation, but for hiring and retaining staff members.

Like other company imperatives, optimizing the employee digital experience for a hybrid workforce model requires a strategic roadmap, the right tools, and the right partners.

Reaping the Best of Both Worlds 

Every position has unique demands, and some aren’t ideal for a hybrid model—including those requiring frequent in-person collaboration, strong security protocols, special technical capabilities, or other stipulations.

You can get a good idea for which positions fit best into the hybrid model by looking at four topics that define the daily digital experience: connectivity, support, automation, and security. These topics also make a great starting point for configuring remote employees’ workspaces and corresponding needs. Consider these questions:

  • Connectivity: Do users have a stable internet connection? How do they access the company network and private servers? Do they use their own devices? Are you using a VPN, single sign-on, or SASE to enable these connections?
  • Support: How can your IT staff provide quick, effective support to remote workers? Can they view or manage a user’s desktop? Can they integrate user self-service as a function capability—this usually helps eliminate the phone call and uses more of the automation workload?
  • Automation: Where can you eliminate redundant processes? How can you make onboarding, file sharing, and software updates faster and easier?
  • Security: How do you secure files offsite while also keeping them readily available? How are you preventing breaches into a virtual desktop?

In our experience, the most successful assessments include input from employees themselves. Not only are your employees the most reliable source for what works and what’s lacking, but providing them with a say in their workspace setup goes a long way toward securing buy-in.

A word of caution: You might be tempted to use new technologies, like those that track clicks or on-screen time, to ensure your employees are being productive outside of your purview. However, you should not underestimate the element of trust when shifting to a hybrid model. Understand that blending work and home life introduces new demands and distractions that don’t exist in the office. Rather than watching over your employees’ shoulders, set goals and metrics and track their progress through performance to maintain a positive company culture.

Putting the Right Tools to Work

Switching between work environments can invite disaster if you don’t have the right tools and processes in place. As a firm that provides consulting, analysis, research, and implementation all under one roof, Stratascale enters every hybrid workforce conversation with an open mind—ready to discuss and strategize around your company’s unique needs, goals, and people.

Tapping into the power of our state-of-the-art Innovation Advisory, Stratascale works with companies to identify, test, implement, and refine new ways of working that enable seamless, secure work-to-home transitions. For example, Stratascale can help your business deploy:

  • The right platforms to facilitate easy collaboration and promote engagement among team members in different locations
  • Virtual desktops that make it possible for your employees to securely connect to the company network from home on their own devices
  • Single sign-on, SASE, and Zero Trust that all make connectivity safer and easier compared to VPN connections
  • Automated onboarding processes—like setting up a new email account, downloading necessary programs, and connecting to networks—to help new employees get off to a quicker start and feel good about the company they’ve joined
  • On-site automation that helps employees connect to tools like printers and PCs as soon as they walk through the door

Stratascale’s advisors and engineers help you identify the tools and best practices that align with your environment while promoting a positive culture. Keep in mind that speed matters. The longer you wait to deploy your hybrid strategy, the more entrenched your current—and potentially less capable—environment will become. If certain elements of your strategy are ready before others, we encourage rolling them out in segments rather than waiting to deploy them all at once.

How It Will All Work to Your Advantage

Our team at Stratascale has decades of experience living and breathing customer-side challenges. We understand how to improve your digital experience by leveraging next-level frameworks to deliver automation, improve your security profile, elevate your position in the cloud, and facilitate the most efficient data transfer between users.

After we help you build a technology roadmap to fully support a hybrid workforce, Stratascale technical advisors test the components at our Innovation Advisory. This helps to ensure the tools you implement will work as you need them to for your staff and your business environment.

Contact us to learn more about how Stratascale can help you incorporate best-in-class digital experience solutions for a long-term hybrid workforce model. You can also view other articles and participate in events on hybrid workforce that are sponsored by our parent company SHI.

Chief Technology Officer

Jason Hood has almost 30 years of experience running cloud, infrastructure (server, storage, and network), desktop, service desk, security, HPC, and data teams for both Fortune 500 and private equity-funded companies. Most recently, he has focused on the operations side of large data centers, IT modernization, and cloud migrations.

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