Employee-Driven Design: Part 1 — Systems Unification

Welcome to Part 1 of our mini-series on Employee-Driven Design! In this series, we’ll walk through exactly what you need to create an engaging Digital employee driven designWorkplace.

When designing a Digital Workplace, design with your employees in mind. A crucial component of creating a workplace with a top-notch user experience is the unification of systems and the consolidation of technology. The workspace should unify all tools and systems an employee uses on a day-to-day basis, while delivering a personalized and engaging experience. It should be the resource to answer any and all questions, and the place where leadership distributes important information and announcements.

How Systems Unification Fosters User Adoption

Changing the behavior of how information is produced, disseminated, and consumed is a key part of successful workplace adoption. The best digital workplaces act as a single, unified place where users can find corporate information. Closing the office early on a holiday? Post that information on the Intranet. Introducing a new Project Management tool? Make sure the FAQs and training schedule are displayed on the workplace dashboard of any project/account manager.

Depending on your industry and the specific nature of your business, systems unification and consolidation may only be partially possible. For example, you may have transactional or financial systems that lives outside your workplace. If that’s the case, users should still be able to access the Intranet and find a unified place to all the systems (and their functionalities) that they need.

Microsoft 365 makes unification and personalization easy

Even if your intranet isn’t an all-in-one system, it still needs to function as a one-stop-shop. If you’re using separate systems, they need to speak to one another in a way that makes sense. Luckily, Microsoft 365 makes connecting disparate tools easy. The hard part is going through and making sure every tool that needs to be integrated is accounted for. Thinking about your resources in two ways — those that help how work gets done and those that support employees — can help with this process.

Resources that help how work gets done

  • Operational systems
  • Marketing systems
  • Information technology
  • Productivity & efficiency tools
  • Forms

Resources that support your employees

  • Personal employee resources
  • Human resources
  • Policies and procedures

As far as personalization is concerned, the possibilities are almost endless. With a digital workplace, leadership can deliver a unified and branded experience to every user, while simultaneously displaying only the most relevant information. Using information housed in distribution lists, or an employee directory, each user gets a unique, curated experience where they can easily consume the information they care about most.

We Drink Our Own Champagne

So how do we know Employee-Driven Design works? We see its success every day in our own company. When Withum merged with Portal Solutions (a digital transformation and cloud solution provider), we needed to design a digital workplace that could bridge the gap between both the advisory and technical arms of the organizations. We took our 16+ years of experience and boiled our intranet down to exactly what our employees wanted. With a simplified navigation and personalized dashboards based on department and role, we’ve seen a huge increase in employee engagement. So, if you’re looking for a digital transformation partner, we’ve been doing this for a long time and we know what works. Look out for part two of the series, creating engaging content!

If you have any questions about using Employee Driven Design to develop your digital workplace, reach out to us online, or give us a call at 240-406-9960.

Topics: Digital Workplace Trends
Adam Levithan

Adam is a Principal at Withum and is a Microsoft MVP. He is a seasoned business strategist, SharePoint advocate, and information architect, focusing on designing information management and collaboration solutions leveraging Microsoft SharePoint and Office 365 technologies.