Editor’s Question: How can businesses improve the digital experiences of their employees?

Editor’s Question: How can businesses improve the digital experiences of their employees?

We asked three industry experts how businesses can improve the digital experiences of their employees. Here is what they had to say:

Brian Sathianathan, Chief Technology Officer at Iterate.ai

Brian Sathianthan, Chief Technology Officer at Iterate.ai

Low-code development isn’t just about the innovation acceleration advantages it delivers for customer-facing applications.

The push towards low-code is also a strategy that CIOs can (and should) leverage to deliver more customized and more elegant digital experiences for their enterprise’s own employees.

The internal use cases for low-code are perhaps less heralded than customer-facing applications, but they are no less important – and can be a major success driver for today’s CIO.

Using low-code techniques, a CIO’s team can rapidly assemble and iterate on internal applications and interfaces simply by connecting pre-coded modules (think Lego blocks). Done right, low-code enables internal applications to be built at least 15x faster than traditional coding.

This transforms the velocity that a business can address any areas of their employee-facing experiences that aren’t humming or that could use more features.

Importantly for CIOs, though, low-code also offers an improved digital experience for developers themselves. Low-code eliminates the tedious block-and-tackle work of development, while empowering developers to easily harness exciting AI/ML, Big Data, IoT, voice, Blockchain and API technologies.

That superior developer experience can be the key differentiator for a business when it comes to retaining key developer talent.

For the rest of the (non-developer) workforce, low-code can quickly introduce and regularly improve digital experiences – helping employees to be more efficient, effective and satisfied with the tools they use every day.

In scenarios where standardization is required to eliminate misunderstanding, remove roadblocks and boost productivity, CIOs can utilize a low-code strategy to create standardized templates and introduce uniform experiences across all departments and teams within the organization.

Low-code can similarly remove communication gaps between design, development and advanced technology teams by providing a unified interface and standardized components, enabling better individual experiences and more seamless collaborations.

Low-code’s greatest contributions to employee DX are connectivity and speed. Adopting low code enables high-speed creation of internal-facing digital applications that help foster better interactions and experiences, and continuously improve those experiences as new employee needs or preferences arise.

The pace of low-code development both raises morale and ignites a virtuous cycle. Faster and more robust delivery of software projects boosts confidence in the minds of employees, and further speeds up the development cycle.

Finally, low-code gives CIOs the unique opportunity to democratize development and distribute responsibility for employee experiences to teams themselves. Because low-code offers such a simple UI, employees can serve as citizen developers and code quite effectively.

Teams can directly control their tooling, and harness self-service access to relevant data and analytics capabilities. Thus, low-code puts digital experiences in the hands of employees who know exactly what they need to succeed, while freeing experienced developers to pursue more complex and ambitious projects that move the business forward.

Brian Dunagan, Vice President of Engineering, Retrospect, a StorCentric Company

Brian Dunagan, Vice President of Engineering, Retrospect, a StorCentric Company

Tom Smith, Bestselling Author and Co-Founder, Partners In Leadership, summed it up well when he stated, ‘Leadership is the ability to facilitate movement in the needed direction and have people feel good about it.’ Indeed, this statement also speaks to the importance of improving the digital employee experience (DEX).

The COVID pandemic certainly demonstrated in no uncertain terms the criticality of DEX. From businesses to government, the ability to communicate was crucial for maintaining operations. Zoom, Google Meet and Microsoft teams were just a few of the dozens of video conferencing services millions of people around the world turned to when we were forced to stay home to help stop the spread.

However, what also became crystal clear during this time was that there is a great deal more to DEX than simply providing workers with online communication tools.

Unfortunately, the COVID pandemic also demonstrated that there are always bad actors ready to exploit an already horrific situation. Ransomware attacks exploded during the pandemic, a trend that continues today with recent reports indicating that in Q1 2022 ransomware detections doubled over the total 2021 volume.

Today, tools that enable employees to defend themselves, to detect early signs of intrusion, protect their data and ensure on-going safe and secure operations – from anywhere – is another key to DEX.

What’s required are complete ransomware defense and detection solutions that encompasses on-premise, remote and cloud protection. The ideal solutions to ensure maximum DEX should offer a seamless one-click backup and ransomware protection experience with global cloud footprint options to minimize latency and facilitate seamless adherence with local data regulations.

The easier we make it for our workforce (and consequently, our organizations) to avoid the time and expense of successful ransomware attacks, the better their employee experience – leading to happier, more engaged employees that are more productive and dedicated to your organization’s bottom-line objectives.

Surya Varanasi, CTO, StorCentric

Surya Varanasi, CTO, StorCentric

Today, smart organizations put as much emphasis on the Employee Experience (EX) as they do on the Customer Experience (CX). That is because they know that the two are inherently intertwined.

In other words, doing right by your employees helps to ensure that they will do right by your customers. Not only that, but the word tends to get out about companies that treat their employees well (and vice versa) and in this tightening labor market, this enables organizations to attract and retain the best people. (P.S Treating your employees well is also simply the right thing to do.)

Today, the employee digital experience is a critical factor in the overall Employee Experience (EX). In order to be successful, organizations must strategically implement technologies that empower employees with the digital capabilities they need to be efficient, effective, productive and protected – no matter where they work.

The ability to secure data whether working on-site, at home or on the road is very important when it comes to the employee digital experience. This is especially true given the record number of ransomware and other cyberattacks that are currently taking place with such regularity.

In fact, recent IDC research indicated that in 2021, more than one third of organizations worldwide experienced a ransomware attack or breach that successfully blocked access to systems or data. And for those that fell victim, many experienced multiple ransomware events.

Employees must be armed with unbreakable backup to protect themselves and their organization from cybercrime, such as ransomware. What’s needed is to make backed up data immutable, thereby eliminating any way it can be deleted or corrupted.

The ideal unbreakable backup solution can do just that by creating an immutable, secure format; and then for added protection, stores the admin keys in another location entirely. And, by layering-on a backup solution that has built-in verification, employees can alleviate their worry about their ability to recover – and redirect their time and attention to activities that more directly impact their organization’s bottom-line objectives.

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