A service-oriented digital workforce is instrumental for an impactful business transformation

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Economic Times – ET Edge Insights, its management, or its members


A service-oriented digital workforce is instrumental for an impactful business transformation

Digitalization, demand for real-time data and automation are combining to pressurize leaders of Shared Services and BPO setups to react and adapt. Thanks to COVID, technology has taken the center stage globally. Despite all the adverse effects, the pandemic has led to a great digital leap and acceleration in transformation by forcefully breaking away all their resistance to change with new ways of working in most organizations.

It is inevitable that leaders are forced to focus on sustainable transformation with the current VUCA environment, which is volatile, uncertain, complex and full of ambiguity. VUCA demands us to avoid traditional, outdated management and leadership approaches while being agile in introducing new ways of working for a sustainable transformation. [box type=”info” align=”” class=”” width=””]Forward thinking leaders are looking ahead so that they can prod away barriers to meet the demands of tomorrow and hit the ground running towards driving sustainable transformation. [/box]

No matter how great a technology you may have and improvised on processes being introduced, we can’t do away without having the right people on board. The Golden Triangle sums up the crucks towards sustainable transformation, where Technology, Process and People are all interdependent. Far too often business transformation efforts concentrate on the implementation of new technologies and process improvement strategies while ignoring the people aspect of the change initiative resulting in transformation initiatives not achieving their desired results.

The break of dawn for this new and improved approach hinges not only on empowered employees that can solve problems on their own but also those who can combine capabilities with that of digital technology competencies; to become a truly service-oriented workforce that is ready to support a sustainable transformation. With that Shared Services and BPO’s will be able to prod away barriers towards a sustainable transformation by Building a Service-Oriented Digital Workforce!

Building a Service-Oriented Digital Workforce

The three keys in building a Service-Oriented Digital Workforce include having the right skills and expertise to form a strong people foundation to support sustainable transformation, creating a collaborative landscape by leveraging on digital tools and having an integrated Change Management approach.

We know that Technology and skills are intertwined. It goes without saying that our employees must be upskilled in order to keep up with the technological advancements. As a result, it is critical for Shared Services and BPOs to follow this digital path by looking to upskill, reskill and equip their workforce in order to understand the newest industry trends to deliver value and provide better user experience.

In preparing the workforce for the hybrid robotics enabled workforce for the future, efforts need to be focused on assessing skills, developing and defining career paths and determining the requirements for reskilling in order to meet the future demands. To further strengthen the organization post skilling, upskilling and re-skilling focusing on both hard and soft skills, it is critical for leaders to create a collaborative landscape by leveraging digital tools and coupling it with the relevant soft skills.

Analytical capability and Innovative mindsets enable employees to grasp the opportunities on existing data while having LEAN capabilities encourages a problem-solving culture where everyday problems and frustrations are quickly resolved. Soft skills such as conflict resolution, emotional intelligence, time management are critical to helping employees fully utilize their hard skills. Employees today will need to be equipped with the ability to reinvent themselves to form a digital workforce that is truly service-oriented.

A Service-Oriented Digital Workforce will not only help cultivate an automation mind-set, but promote a quick turnaround for simple automation and release the workforce to attend to more value-added work as organizations are moving away from transactional activities in order to focus on delivering value.

Automation should be recognized as a value-driving competency for Shared Services and BPOs where its full value can be realized, rather than just looking at it as a tool to get work done. What started as a simple RPA is now morphing into a digital workforce in most organizations.

However, despite having the right technology and people, the top 3 challenges that we hear from business leaders is Change management and digital transformation. Many have acknowledged that the only way to remain competitive is to create a wholehearted acceptance of digitation within an organization.

An integrated Change Management focuses on developing critical organizational competencies around organizational culture transformation and process improvement in driving sustainable transformation efforts.  Leaders should work on a model with a capacity to anticipate human reactions and adapt to a volatile situation in order to modify change measures and create buy-in via a communication to remain effective.

As the famous quote of Zig Ziglar goes – You don’t build a business, you build people and people build your business.  With that, let us focus on Building your people and They Will Build Your Business!

[author title=”” image=”http://”]Authored by Dr. Patricia Francis, C.A. (M), FCCA (UK), Head of Sanofi Business Services (SBS) Kuala Lumpur Center, Malaysia.[/author]


Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Economic Times – ET Edge Insights, its management, or its members

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