People are the Key to Digital Workforce Transformation

Your talent is the backbone of any digital workforce transformation. It’s only by diving into the needs of your own employees and by fulfilling their true expectations that you’ll be able to create a productive, engaged and loyal talent base. HR departments everywhere, and particularly those in the largest companies in the world, are accountable for a vast employee community. It’s up to the Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO) to leap into the breach to turn modern-day challenges into opportunities. Improving engagement and productivity, enhancing results by investing in latent talent or implementing mobility solutions: technology can serve as a conductor for digital workforce transformation. Assuming, of course, that this transformation goes hand in hand with a great employee experience. It’s essential to spend time and budget on figuring out your workforce’s needs and expectations of their best possible experience.

Pooling employee contributions and implementing change, step by step

Putting theory into practice, we discovered there was room for workforce improvement at our Sweden office. Through TellDell, our internal tool for feedback, we discovered recently that the NPS in Sweden was declining.[1] Through follow-up and establishment of a culture of feedback, we were able to understand the cause of this rather low score. The quality of the workplace appeared to hamper people’s workplace happiness. Infrastructure issues such as a lack of parking spaces, a small work floor, a high level of noise, an old-fashioned interior or bad ergonomics can lead to employee dissatisfaction.

So how did we strip out inefficiencies and provide a good workplace? We first implemented a culture of feedback, then we implemented the improvements our employees requested. We installed the culture of feedback which made all of this possible.

Optimizing digital dexterity of the Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO)

According to Gartner’s latest CEO Survey, the CHRO is the least digitally savvy in the C-suite. Primarily, the new role in workforce transformation and the associated responsibilities didn’t form part of the HR management’s skill set. Until now, this was basically not what a CHRO was asked to do. Considering the technical complexity of the job, comprehending complex labor law compliance, it has simply not been a top priority.

Therefore, it is of paramount importance that a CHRO truly understands employees’ needs , while also involving IT personnel in the process of digital transformation. This way, a much broader understanding of how people want to work is achieved.

Another positive evolution these last few years is the impact the younger generation of hires in HR have on the digital dexterity of the sector. These young people are generally educated in new technology, they are daily users and they tend to understand better what current employees are looking for.

Digital transformation intrinsically linked with culture

As a CHRO you have an immense impact on your organization’s culture and you can help build a culture that is sustainable and attractive for next generations of employees. How? By transforming to a mobile mind-set. Employees all around the organization spend an increasing amount of time out of the office and each year the number of occupied office chairs is diminishing.

“10 years ago, people were satisfied with being able to send emails or making phone calls when they were not at their desk, nowadays the exact same level of access to applications and data, security, efficiency and comfort is expected outside of the office, anywhere, anytime.”

At Dell Technologies, we recognized these needs and therefore initiated our remote flexibility policy. Remote flexibility is not just about providing more choices to team members about the location they are working. It is to provide the infrastructure, tools and services so that team members can work the same way, or better, when they are remote, as when they are working at their company’s offices. Mobility starts with leadership and that is why the support of the CHRO is crucial in this matter.

A loyal employee base as the result of technological progress

Mobility and new technology solutions in general are there to support us in our roles as devoted digital workforce transformation evangelists. Repetitive tasks can be taken over by technology which means employees will be confronted with having to manage more complex business situations, but will also be more satisfied at their jobs. Shifting to a productive and loyal employee base by working better instead of harder without undermining the importance of soft skills. This course of action will create a skill set that will gain importance when we intensify cooperation with technology.

[1] Net Promoter Score®, or NPS®, measures customer experience and predicts business growth

About the Author: Thierry Petit

Thierry Petit currently serves as Senior Vice President and General Manager for DELL EMC EMEA’s, Global Client & Compute Solutions (GCCS). As Senior Vice President and General Manager, Thierry’s leadership responsibilities include; delivering revenue, generating and driving business strategy, partner relations and most importantly, customer satisfaction. The GCCS business is focused on selling Dell EMC’s client and server portfolios, as well as the software, services and peripherals that compliment those products to Dell EMC’s largest global customers. Thierry joined Dell in 2003 as General Manager for the Public business in France and in 2007 was appointed as General Manager for the EMEA Public Solutions & Services business rising to Country leader for Dell France in January 2009. In 2012, Thierry accepted the role as Executive Director and General Manager for Dell Global Sales Southern Europe and in 2014 was appointed as EMEA Executive Director, leading and driving the Dell EMEA Global Accounts business. Thierry was promoted to Vice-President in 2016, advancing in 2018 to Senior Vice President for Dell EMC’s EMEA Global Client & Compute Solutions business. Prior to working at DELL, Thierry was responsible for operations, marketing and sales leadership roles within the technology industry for companies including; Thomson Semiconductors, ST Microelectronics, Compaq and HP. Thierry holds an Engineering degree from École nationale supérieure de l'aéronautique et de l'espace (Toulouse, 1985) and an MBA from INSEAD (Fontainebleau, 1992).