Empower your workforce to work locally and succeed globally

By Meera Guthi, IT Solutions Marketing, Dell

I live in a quiet, sunny, coastal town in southern India, and my teammates work on another continent, across various states and time zones.  Together, we span about 9,000 miles and two major oceans, yet I never feel remote.

Welcome to the world of a new workforce and a connected workplace. Did you know:

  • 52 percent of employees believe that working from home is just as productive as or more productive than those in the office
  • 46 percent believe that technology has increased productivity and faster communications
  • 50 percent of employees think they will be offered the chance to work from home in their lifetime

These statistics are from the Evolving Workforce Survey, conducted by Dell and Intel. Interestingly it has also highlighted some key issues for companies today.

  • One in four employees can be influenced by technology alone to stay or leave a company
  • 54 percent of companies allow BYOD (bring your own device) – but only 27 percent are securing them
  • Less than 50 percent of employees feel that IT takes employee opinions into consideration

The workforce attitude is changing. Like millennials, employees from a broader spectrum of the workforce are increasingly expecting the ability to work anywhere and on multiple devices of their choosing.

Companies that want to succeed need to find ways to enable this emerging workforce by creating and implementing employee-friendly policies and providing them with the right IT infrastructure, services and support.

How does Dell empower its workforce?

Dell has always been an early adopter of technology trends and seized the opportunity to align with its employee work-personas quickly. The Connected Workplace program was launched in 2010, and Dell currently has 20 percent of its workforce participating in this program, with a goal to increase staff participation to 50 percent by 2020.

From the device to the data center, Dell empowers its workforce by creating foundational IT that dynamically changes to meet shifts in end user devices, environments and business need. To provide support for its workforce, Dell has also adopted Desktop Workspace, providing a secure enterprise workspace for a broad range of computer systems. Apart from boosting employee satisfaction, it also streamlined IT provisioning and support with a single, consistent systems management solution.

I am among the 100,000+ employees that Dell connects via “presence awareness” and instant messaging. This has improved mobility for 20,000 workers with a Voice over IP solution. Today distributed employees can communicate and collaborate more efficiently, at lower costs, with Dell solutions for Microsoft Lync, Exchange and SharePoint, with its Unified Communications and Collaboration solution. By embracing these technologies, Dell has also cut infrastructure costs with virtualization and avoided more than $1 million in costs by eliminating aging PBX and traditional telephone voicemail systems.

Dell enables workforce mobility through technologies such as mobile computing, application services, and cloud client computing. For example, Dell sales teams today get access to critical sales information on the go and at the point of sale via a cloud-based platform. “For the truly mobile workforce, mobile devices aren’t just for checking email or flight times; they are the lifeline to the corporate resources needed to boost  productivity, improve business performance and stay ahead of the competition,” according to The New Mobile Workforce white paper.

Dell is also a social media pioneer and uses this effective tool to both resolve customer issues and to empower its own employees. I am among Dell’s 9,000 employees trained on the effective use of social media via the SMaC University program. Apart from using various collaborative tools, I also stay connected with what’s going on through Dell’s SharePoint and Chatter, Dell’s internal Twitter. I get my IT issues resolved promptly with the help of a 24/7 service desk or via self-help tools.

View how Dell enables the mobile workforce in the video below.

Connected securely

With so many employees logging into the network from multiple devices, security cannot be overlooked, yet the Dell survey revealed that organizations struggle with security when employees use their own devices. Dell ensures its employees can connect securely from virtually anywhere with a stable, scalable and remote access solution via Secure Remote Access. The company’s network connects all employees securely and is scalable.

Brendan O’Sullivan, Program Product Marketing Manager, Office of the CIO at Dell says, “Any of our current 107,000 worldwide employees who are eligible for remote access — which is the majority — can use this tool at any time, and we have the scalability to support more users as our organization expands.” Click here to read the case study.

Dell’s success in workforce empowerment so far can be attributed to a combination of business support from the leadership, proactive technology and infrastructure decisions, and collaboration between various internal groups to create a future ready platform to sustain a new workforce.

Here are some of the best practices to ensure success for an empowered and connected workplace initiative:

  • Adoption of strategic and forward-looking business change and employee-friendly policies
  • Efficient infrastructure and IT solutions from the device to the desktop, including better tools with the ability to scale during peak times, and personalized, data-driven applications that enable faster and smarter work with continuous improvement built to create a future-ready enterprise
  • Guaranteed security of device, applications, and network across the organization

As the sun sets in my part of the world and I take in the cool evening breeze by the seaside, my teammates across the globe are waking up to their day. We like to say that our workflow follows the sun. Today, Dell empowers us by creating an environment that is connected, secure and flexible, enabling us to perform our roles successfully with our own unique work personas.

Find out how Dell can empower your workforce.

About the Author: Power More