Levers For A Future ready Organization - Technology, Talent & Trust

Renowned people manager with experience in providing services for R&D, product development, pre-sales & sales support, services delivery and management consulting

The future is not ambiguous; it has always surprised us, and will continue to do so. The last 24 months, nevertheless, have given us an excellent view of what it is going to be like, things that will help us to steer ahead. Three interlinked forces have been set off – organizations must ensure that talent, technology, and trust are highest on the agenda to deliver delightful customer and employee experiences.

While the pandemic gave us a booster shot in accelerating technology transformation to enable a remote working workforce, and engage the customer through digital platforms, it has also triggered a talent challenge. The west is facing a Great Resignation, and in India the information technology industry is buffeted by almost a quarter of their employees changing jobs, creating unparalleled human resource challenges.

The traumatic events of the past two years have people rethinking their priorities andredefining responsibility. Regarding sustainability specifically, research has found the pandemic influenced 93 percent of global consumers' views

Trust issues have come to the forefront, as organizations now have powerful analytical capabilities, thanks to digital transformation, to gather and process customer and individual data, to drive business decisions. The risk of violating privacy, vulnerability to cyber-attacks, ransomware,data theft have exponentially amplified in a digitally transformed world.There is also the question eliminating biases in algorithms to create trustworthy and explainable AI(artificial intelligence).

Driving A Data-To-Decision Culture
Technology transformation is, however, not a one-off project, but rather a continuous initiative to maintain leadership, changing processes, upskilling, and reskilling talent. The goal should be to create a data to-decision process that enables everyone to use data as a major input for decision making.

A data culture would mean that every employee is allowed to access data and use it continuously. To do that companies must break down silos and make data available. This will require a culture change as traditional style often has resulted in departments holding their data close to their chest.

Creating a data-driven culture would call for organizations to upskill and reskill their employees. The varied skills needed to wrangle all this data from multiple sources could be outsourced. Another perhaps better option is to develop these skills in the current workforce.

Talent Retention Through Skill Building
Quite a few companies have seen their digital transformation initiatives affected by talent shortage.Creating the right skills is a double-edge weapon. While it meets critical talent requirement, it is also a tool to retain and engage employees. Companies must give them the training they need and encourage a continuous learning mindset.

Not everyone can become a data scientist, but we must augment employees’ existing expertise so they can integrate data analysis into their work, automate tedious, manual tasks with robotic process automation (RPA). Rounding out people’s newfound digital knowhow with softer skills, like leadership, creativity, problem-solving and cross functional collaboration, is also key.

Analytics can also be used to enhance the employee experience, deepening people's engagement with their work and reducing churn. A continuous learning mindset and access to training in digital skills allow people to solve problems more creatively, increasing productivity and gain competitive advantage.

A blend of digital and 'soft' skills is vital to managing and using big data across all business functions. Here’s an example: Finance professionals pull data from various systems like treasury or banking software to help make predictions and guide a company’s financial decisions. Meanwhile, marketing experts use different data to better understand and target customer’s needs while creatively advertising goods or services.

The Trust Premium
Trust has become a serious issue facing most companies in a digital-first world. Companies now possess vast amounts of data about their customers and users. They will be judged by security to ensure data privacy and how data is being used. This is a tough balance between creating a data driven organization, and data privacy.

The pandemic also fast-tracked cybercrime and fraud, with bad actors upping the scale, sophistication and frequency of their attacks and causing major threats to businesses, governments, and consumers. It has become increasingly clear that organizations must take a proactive, strategic approach to build trust.

The traumatic events of the past two years have people rethinking their priorities and redefining responsibility.Regarding sustainability specifically, research has found the pandemic influenced 93 percent of global consumers’ views. Consumers also see that sustainability and wellness go hand in hand. Consumers feel sustainability and health and wellness benefits are important to them and they’re willing to put a premium on protecting people and the planet. But just under half of consumers say they trust the statements companies make about environmental sustainability, and more than three-quarters of them also do their own research before making a purchasing decision. It is imperative for companies to provide transparent and detailed information about their initiatives if they want to connect with purpose-driven consumers. Employees also seek trust in the organization’s commitment towards their health and safety. Society rewards trustworthy companies. Customers, employees, and governments, want to engage more with trustworthy companies. Trustworthy companies will enjoy a premium in valuation, attract talent and customers, and build the foundations of a sustainable business model that will be able to withstand future shocks with ease.