The Internet is undoubtedly the invention that has caused the biggest paradigm shift in the last century. It made the world a smaller place, putting people in contact with others, as well as opening access to huge swathes of knowledge, writes Andrew Cheel, Global Evangelist at Unify
Still, there is an even bigger thing the internet has revolutionised: people. Millennials are classed as those born between the 1980s and early 2000s and it’s the internet that defines them. They are the first group who has spent their formative years with access to this technology. It has connected them, not only to each other in a new way, but to an unbelievable amount of information.
The generation game
This has created a different type of individual from the baby boomers. Older generations learnt how to work solitarily, completing a task and then presenting the results of their labours back to their colleagues. Millennials are different. They have grown up socialising and work in the same way, constantly collaborating and sharing their thoughts and ideas.
One of the biggest problems the Millennial workforce is facing is balancing the technology that enables them to realise the connected life style they want, and the enterprise software, especially legacy platforms, that were not made with the focus on the individual or connecting groups of people together for work. They were constructed to complete point tasks. In other words, people had to adapt to use them.
This is unattractive to the young modern worker. Technology should not define how individuals act, instead it should work seamlessly, functioning as an extension of the individual user, enabling and empowering them.
Putting collaboration into practice
So what needs to happen in companies for this to become a reality? The first step is mobile. This does not mean laptops, more smartphones and tablets. Software should work across a gamut of devices, allowing instantaneous work, wherever someone is.
User experience is also a vital element in enabling the modern worker. Part of providing a seamless experience for employees revolves around finding the right tool for the job. These must be powerful, but not complex, allowing a huge range of activities to be undertaken. Simplification should be at the forefront, delivering a truly mobile experience that works both logically and naturally.
It’s vital that your organisation adopts a carefully crafted unified approach to communications to stay ahead of the game. Millennials and the modern worker operate in a disparate way to previous generations. They demand usability and flexibility from both their work and their technology, but delivering this will pay huge dividends. Productivity will be improved, employees will be more output driven and you can attract the best candidates. The internet has changed everything, and the challenge now is for companies large and small to find new & exciting ways to harness the true power of this change.