The majority of workers fit into two categories: those who are comfortable with technology and those who are not. Unless the business is technology-specific, it is highly likely both employee types work within your company. When designing company projects, this needs to be considered.
According to the Ivey Business Journal, it is not simply having advanced technology that leads a business to success. “Firm performance critically depends on how these technologies are implemented. (It) requires… a human resource strategy to develop the necessary worker skills and engage them in the process.” Unless team members know how to operate the technologies they are using, those technologies can inversely slow down production for your company.
Many companies pay for their employees to attend IT classes. These range from introductory technology classes, code writing courses, and IT project management programs. This should be determined by the employee’s current skill level and the needs of the company. By ensuring employees have the opportunity to familiarize themselves with current technologies; each employee will feel more comfortable working with additional software and hardware. As a result, employees will be more likely to contribute to company projects. Some universities even offer discounts to employers if a certain number of employees attend a class.
By providing employees with a laptop instead of a desktop, workers have the added benefit of portability and this option is surprisingly affordable. The ability to use Wi-Fi encourages employees to work even while they are on the go. This is not an option for all industries, such as those that handle classified or confidential data, but having the best technologies allows for creativity to flow without frustration. (Mah, 2013)
To support infrastructure, companies should have their own Wi-Fi network. When every employee is on the same network, the accounting department can talk directly to the advertising department, who can speak directly to the technology team who can speak directly to management. This level of communication transparency not only enables the free flow of ideas but also lets each employee know they are part of a team. This type of cohesion should not be understated. Research has shown that when employees feel important within their company, they work harder and take fewer days off. (Hill & Fouts, 2005)
Many people are uncomfortable with processes that involve change. If technological updates are new for your company, there are ways to ease employee stress. Following a participative leadership approach, allows employees to become more committed to the organization and its goals. This approach involves collecting input from all employees. Supervisors still have ultimate decision-making power, but the input of employees is taken into account. (changingminds.org, 2015)
Each employee is vital to the organization. By taking extra steps to ensure employees have the appropriate skill sets, updating technology in the workplace will be something they look forward to. If you want your team to be the best, make sure each link is strengthened so they can achieve their maximum potential.