Most of my role is spent working with teams in Microsoft/Citrix, and our other strategic vendors planning or helping these partners deliver value back to our mutual customers. A lot of the projects I get involved with help organisations to digitally transform or enable their workforce.
Taking software to the max
As we turn the corner of another Microsoft fiscal year (June-July) I've really started to notice a common challenge. Many of our customers are not deploying and indeed taking advantage of the software, they have bought or committed to.
Let's take Office 365 as a prime example. So, Office 365 - sounds straightforward, right? It's just Office….in the Cloud? No?
No. Office 365 and Microsoft 365 - its more encompassing sibling - are in fact a suite of products designed to create greater collaboration and in turn productivity utilising cloud-based services in a secure way. But the reality is often different. I've lost count of the number of customers who are only deploying one workload…Exchange Online. Yep, that’s right - email.
In my opinion, that is madness. It’s like signing up to Spotify or Tidal for a year and listening to your favourite song on repeat – and no other (Mine's LA Woman by the Doors by-the-way.) It doesn't make any sense.
Now, before you stop reading, I do appreciate that sometimes it simply isn't a priority. Or, it can be very difficult to roll out and get users to adopt. I understand that. And I've been fortunate to work with some of the customers we've helped overcome these barriers.
18 months ago, I think many organisations were underestimating the cultural change needed to get end-users to truly adopt innovative technologies. It's disruptive. Really disruptive. And people, generally, don't like change.
A person, much wiser than me, once said "Change is in everyone's life, whether it's Brexit or Trump, a house move, kids moving school, or a change in partner. There is always something going on. Then you come to work and someone has landed a new operating system, something called "Teams" and taken your desk phone away and given you a headset". You can see why end users resist sometimes.
This is a major challenge for many organisations trying to make the most out of their investment in technology - Microsoft or otherwise. Whilst it's not easy, it can be done, and has been done to great effect.
The Modern Workplace needs to adapt to you
It's not sustainable to deliver applications to users in the same way anymore.
People are mobile and need access from anywhere. Even the ones that "drive" desks need to be able to collaborate more effectively. From the holiday camp reps that need access to the day's specials on their mobile device, to architects using HoloLens to decide where a building feature needs to be, to an on-the-move personal assistant - all need access to technology in different ways.
I like working with technology, I like seeing it make a real difference in the organisations I have the pleasure of meeting. But seeing organisations not take full advantage of the investments they make is something I want to change.
At OCSL our understanding of the importance of cultural change and how to successfully execute is based on experience.
Not only have we helped hundreds of customers, we’ve also been on our own digital transformation journey. We’ve had to change as an organisation to adopt new ways of working. And the lessons we’ve learned, have enabled us to become more than just a technology company.
We specialise in having our people out in the field helping customers understand how to get the most out of this innovative technology and how it can make a significant difference to day-to-day activities.
For example. with Teams and Skype for Business we’ve helped two previously separate organisations in the music industry come together with a collaborative modern workplace.
If you're stuck,or just starting out, let us know, we might be able to help you.