Our work habits and requirements are ever shifting towards becoming more mobilised. Today workers and managers spend more time out of the office yet we demand (and need) the same level of connectivity and integration with our systems – unfortunately (for most) the software/ systems business are using are not allowing them to reap the benefits of remote working. The reality is that we are used to having tech that works anywhere, in our personal lives we have gotten used to being able to use our smartphones and tablets to do a plethora of things from anywhere in the world (assuming there is a phone signal/ Wi-Fi connection) it works in our personal lives so why not in our business lives? 70% of employees check and respond to email outside of work and the evidence shows that we want to be able to perform other work duties when away from the office but our systems are not letting us do so.
A recent survey showed that 84% of business have invested in hardware that, in theory should allow their workforce to do tasks in the field that instantly synchronises into company systems, however whilst companies have invested in hardware, they have neglected to invest in their systems meaning they are unable to do the tasks they need/ want to do. 34% of the businesses surveyed said legacy systems were the biggest roadblock in their mobilising and general growth with 47% stating they are not satisfied with the systems that they work with every day.
For example in regards to HR processes, 43% find HR processes to be a major source of frustration, People expect to be able to undertake basic HR related processes from anywhere, they have the hardware to perform these tasks yet the systems they have in place are not letting them do this. This is leading to a lot of frustration in people – it’s like having a sports car but using the engine of a moped to power it.
So why is this? Why are companies eager to invest in hardware but not keen on investing in software when it comes to enabling more remote working? After all it’s the systems that; if designed properly, will run the business not the shiny piece of new kit. A possible answer put forward to this is the tangibility of hardware over software, you can see what you are getting and can physically hold the tech in your hands, something not possible with software. This can lead to a lack of perceived value in Software.
There is also the difference in delivery lead times between the two; Software – especially if it’s bespoke will take time to get right and deliver whereas new hardware can be delivered in 3-5 working days.
There is also the inescapable fact that we all love a gadget – who doesn’t want the latest smartphone or tablet? Tech is also well marketed by its manufacturers, we always know when a new iPhone or Microsoft Surface is coming out. So given a choice, managers and purchasing naturally gravitate towards tech.
There needs to be a more balanced approach to overall IT spending, with a healthy balance between hardware and software. Companies need to spend more time thinking about how they need their systems to evolve in order to match the ever shifting needs of our work culture and our attitude towards remote working.
We are here to help businesses with this; we work with you to create software that is mobile and integrates with your current systems. We just finished a project for a client building a software solution that will enable their engineers to complete reports in the field on their tablets, get their customers to sign them off using a stylus and then directly submit them to their system so it is automatically logged as completed and can then be invoiced. Previously they just didn’t have the systems to do this, instead engineers filled out paper forms onsite and had to type them directly into the system when they were next in the office.
We can build systems that remove the frustrations of your team and that will make your business more mobile and efficient, get in touch if you have a project we can help with.