By Steve Ingram, Director – KIT.

We have been using technology forever in business, with laptops and smartphones becoming ever more integral to everyday operations. But never have we witnessed such a reliance on technology, a dependency to keep the economy running or even guarantee business survival. As a result of a global pandemic, technology, in its many guises, is a vital ingredient that firmly underpins the worldwide economy.

However, we are more tech-savvy than ever these days. People use mobile devices for work more and more, and as they continue to rely upon laptops and smartphones, how do we drive adoption? The divide between work and personal use is blurring, which draws questions about ‘switching off’ and increases expectations about the usability of business applications. In a previous post, I looked at engagement. This week, we will delve into new Deloitte research – ‘UK Workers: a year in the pandemic’ and examine how businesses digitally equip their employees.

Bridging the gap between demand and adoption

Diving straight into the Deloitte report, 36% of respondents saw an increase in the frequency of technology used since the start of lockdown. In contrast, almost 60% of employees believe that technology has been essential in enabling them to continue to perform their work during the pandemic. Videoconferencing usage doubled, while there has been a 36% increase in the use of new online systems and processes.

Giving people more technology and meeting demand is essential, but so is ensuring adoption. Executed correctly, it will complete the cycle and create even more demand, highlighted by the fact that almost half surveyed stated that they have become more confident with using technology in the last year. And more than half agree that their company ensures they have the technology needed to excel in their field.

But as ever, in some areas, there is always room for improvement. Working in a paperless office is still not a reality as 40% of respondents agree with the statement: “A large part of my role still requires using paper”. In comparison, 29% of workers perform information input from paper onto electronic devices, or even (dare I say it) printing out information to make it easier to use.

Paper usage is the highest among the public service sector, administration, facilities, and those doing face-to-face sales roles. Working in a customer-facing role and having to experience and manage paperwork to complete a task should be a thing of the past.

Nowhere more so than in the 1:1 interactions that many retail Store Associates undertake daily, whether face-to-face or using the much more common video communication tools. Here, the use of Clienteling and Assisted Selling applications, of which KIT is a leading example, transform how they can work. KIT is as simple to use as their regular mobile phone apps yet powerful enough to drive sales while enhancing the brand.

It is not just about providing the technology; it means thinking about the employees, how easy the technology is to use, how important it is for their daily tasks (‘stickiness’), and how this transfers into a great customer experience.