Create a NEW Digital Workspace | AVOID These 10 Mistakes

By Jasmine Long
December 28, 2023
7 min read
Women creating a new and optimized digital workplace in 2024

We’re all rushing to build the next, best digital workspace. From corporations, to non-profits and healthcare, every industry needs a digital strategy. Hate to say it, but if you’re not thinking about it, your organization’s days are numbered.

No doubt the most difficult aspect of the digital workspace is the implementation. What tools do we need? What are we looking to achieve? Do we even need them? These are valid concerns because there are plenty of ways company’s miss the boat in this process.

In this article, we’ll discuss some of the most common pitfalls when creating a digital workspace in this day and age.

Ignoring Personalization Needs: It’s All in the Details

We are all creatures of habit. The same thing goes for your employees. Gone are the days where onboarding was a speech about “it’s our way, or the highway.” And while it’s true that there needs to be a give and take on both sides, you want to make sure you do as much as possible to make employees feel at home.

For instance, consider a salesperson who needs quick access to client portfolios and a developer who prioritizes software tools. By customizing dashboards to meet these specific needs, you’re not just increasing efficiency; you’re making each employee feel valued and understood.

Personalization can mean automated task prioritization or even customized alerts and notifications. It’s about creating a workspace that adapts to individual styles and preferences, making everyone’s job easier and more enjoyable.

Neglecting Mobile Experience: Your Office in Your Pocket

Imagine being out for a client meeting and needing urgent access to a document stored on your office network. If your digital workspace isn’t optimized for mobile, it’s a missed opportunity. Today, the office isn’t just a physical space; it’s wherever your team needs to be.

A mobile-optimized digital workspace isn’t just about viewing content on a smaller screen; it’s about ensuring full functionality. Can your team collaborate on documents, access critical systems, and communicate effectively via their smartphones or tablets? Think about incorporating responsive design, streamlined apps, and secure mobile access to ensure your team is productive, no matter where they are.

Underestimating the Learning Curve: Empowering Through Education

Nearly 1 in 4 hires fail to make it to their one-year anniversary at a new workplace. This is due to bad onboarding and poor instructions and definition of roles. It’s an epidemic, really. Your digital workspace should supercharge the hiring and onboarding process, not ruin it.

Effective training is diversified – online tutorials, in-person workshops, and regular Q&A sessions. Consider varying learning styles: some may prefer self-guided online modules, while others benefit from hands-on workshops. Remember, a well-trained team that can efficiently make use of your organization’s digital workspace is a successful one.

Skimping on Security Measures: Like Leaving Your Doors Unlocked

Cyber hackers are getting better and better every year. If they can infiltrate MGM Casino’s and US government agencies, they can surely get you. And these days, they aren’t targeting your company directly. It’s usually via 3rd party services that your company’s data is compromised.

There are trusted digital workplace services out there, which are few. The first thing you’ll want to do when on a sales call with a potential provider is ask about security. Ask for certifications, ask about compliance and ask for a second, even third opinions. You can’t afford to be careless in this decision-making process.

Allowing Data Silos to Persist: Don’t Let Your Data Play Hide and Seek

So many organizations, still, do not have cross-sharing of data and information internally between teams. Here’s the real-world impact of this: imagine if the marketing team is crafting a brand message without input from the sales team, who actually talks to the customers. Or consider a product development team that doesn’t integrate feedback from the support team, who knows the user’s pain points best.

The result? Projects and processes that are disjointed, a culture where one hand doesn’t know what the other is doing, and often, inefficiencies or missed opportunities because insights and knowledge aren’t being pooled together for the greater good of the organization.

Forgetting About Accessibility: Everyone Gets a Seat at the Table

An efficient digital workspace is one where everyone feels equal. And with all of the tools available, accessibility should never be an issue. Take, for instance, one employee who is color blind and another has carpal tunnel syndrome. While they seem like small issues, they are significantt to the individuals. And it’s nothing a good digital workspace can’t solve.

Turn busy graphics and presentation into something that’s easily digestible to the person who is color blind. Create keyboard shortcuts for different apps for the person with carpal tunnel. Very simple solution to sometimes complex problems is what it’s all about!

Underutilizing Analytics: Missed Opportunities Galore!

An organization that doesn’t use analytics is one that is doomed for failure. Ignoring analytics is like ignoring treasure maps. These insights are gold mines, telling you what’s working and what’s not. Maybe there’s a tool that everyone loves, or something that’s collecting virtual dust. Keep an eye on these metrics, and use them to make your digital workspace not just good, but great.

Disregarding Employee Feedback: Not Just a Box to Check

Ever been in a conversation where you felt like your thoughts just bounced off the walls? That’s how employees feel when their feedback isn’t considered in the digital workspace. Employees are the at the core of every organization. Wouldn’t it make sense to listen to them?

Whether they are having issues with a task or the overall work environment, you should listen to your staff. Make sure you have software that allows to easily leave feedback as the issues arise.

Failing to Plan for Scalability: Future-Proofing is Key

Future-proofing means thinking ahead – anticipating growth and planning for it. It’s about choosing digital tools that can grow in capacity, integrate with emerging technologies, and adapt to changing business models. It’s about ensuring your digital workspace can handle not just more people, but more complex tasks, more data, and more interaction without breaking a sweat.

And it’s not just about handling increased traffic. It’s about future-proofing your entire digital ecosystem. Consider a healthcare provider didn’t think about the future integration of telemedicine into their digital workspace. They’ll end up with a fragmented system that couldn’t support remote patient consultations when it became a norm.

Too Many Digital Workspace Tools: Quality Over Quantity

Here’s the thing – having a Swiss Army knife is cool, but what if you just need a good old screwdriver? Bombarding your team with too many tools can be overwhelming. 45% of employees feel like there is an overload of digital workspace tools at work. This is not a Winnipeg strategy.

You need to sit back and analyze your digital workspace efforts. If you want to add tools, make sure it makes sense. If it’s time for a switch or an upgrade, then do that. Too many tools can deter from your overall company goals.

Failing to Integrate With Existing Workflows: Don’t Fix What Ain’t Broken

Integration is not about reinvention; it’s about enhancement. It’s about making sure the new tech feels like a natural extension of the old – less of a shock, more of a pleasant surprise. Make a list and inventory of current tools that you use and make sure anything additional fits into this workflow.

With so many workplace applications now being easily integrated with each other, any change you make can have a seismic affect. Think of how long it took for your organization to get on board with the current digital workspace strategy. So, if you’re planning something new, make sure you know what you’re getting in to.

Misjudging Company Culture Fit: It’s About Harmony

Picture trying to fit a square peg into a round hole – that’s what a mismatch in company culture and digital workspace can feel like. It’s not about the fanciest tools; it’s about what resonates with your team. Does your company thrive on tradition and face-to-face interactions? Then maybe a high-tech, all-digital-all-the-time solution might not be the best first step. It’s about striking the right balance – finding a tech solution that feels like a firm handshake, not a cold robotic arm.

By Jasmine Long

Jasmine is passionate about harnessing the power of digital marketing to drive social impact. She previously was the Communications Assistant at Jumpstart Refugee Talent, a nonprofit dedicated to facilitating employment opportunities for refugees in Canada. She is currently the Marketing Coordinator for Intranet Connections!