Managing the Explosion of Digital Tools (HBR Report)
The pandemic brought about a digital revolution in the business world, with organizations adopting a range of digital tools and applications. However, as per a survey, almost half of the business leaders believe that employee productivity has taken a hit due to the explosion of digital tools. This raises the question of why productivity is being affected and what IT leaders can do about it.
The Harvard Business Review Analytic Services report, sponsored by Microsoft, delves deep into this issue. The report states that the key to supporting hybrid work is managing technology, which includes communication and collaboration tools, cloud storage, and customer-facing apps. The report highlights three critical areas that IT leaders need to focus on to manage the explosion of digital tools.
1. Give your teams the right software When organizations adopt digital tools, they often provide their employees with a range of software that they may or may not need. This results in employees being overwhelmed with too many tools, leading to confusion and productivity loss. IT leaders need to provide their teams with the right software that meets their needs, so they don’t have to remove apps later.
2. Track the hidden costs of digital tools Adopting digital tools and applications comes with hidden costs such as training, maintenance, and security. These costs can significantly impact an organization’s budget and lead to financial losses. IT leaders need to track these hidden costs to understand the true cost of the tools they’re using and make informed decisions about which tools to keep and which to discard.
3. Prevent shadow IT Shadow IT refers to the use of unsanctioned technology by employees. This can lead to security risks, data breaches, and compliance issues. IT leaders need to create policies and procedures that prevent shadow IT and ensure that employees are using only authorized software and tools.
The report suggests that managing the explosion of digital tools is critical to supporting hybrid work. IT leaders need to focus on providing the right software, tracking hidden costs, and preventing shadow IT to ensure that their teams are productive and secure.