Technology should empower the people that use it. We see this effect in our home lives: we can tap a few buttons and have groceries delivered to our door, speak to a voice assistant and have our questions answered, and so much more. The technology we use at home feels easy, effective, and convenient in helping us perform everyday tasks.
Unfortunately, the technology used in the workplace doesn't typically live up to the same standards as the technology used at home.
A recent study on technology leaders and laggards found that the impact of technology in the workplace extends beyond making operations run smoother. They found that companies that do not have up-to-date or easy-to-use technology (aka the technology laggards) breed employee frustration and attrition. Workers at technology laggard organizations are almost 500% more likely to be frustrated with their employer and 450% more likely to want to leave to work elsewhere when compared to their counterparts at technology leaders.
Implementing the right technology that empowers employees and creates better operations is a key part of any business, including those in industrial markets like oil and gas, construction, and renewable energy. In this post, we’ll explore how the combination of technology and human expertise brings new levels of efficiency and productivity to organizations in industrial markets.
The Right Technology is Available Now
Over the past few years, we have seen an increase in the sophistication of the technology we use in our everyday lives. These advanced technology solutions became ingrained in our daily lives because they help us accomplish tasks easily and conveniently.
This technology empowers us to take back the time wasted on tedious tasks—and it is something we have come to expect in our lives as consumers. Yet is the same level of sophistication and convenience available to you in the technology you use at work?
Traditionally, the quality, ease-of-use, and availability of the technology for industrial procurement and supply chain management are nowhere near what you use at home every day. But Industry 4.0 is driving a revolution of industrial technology that is changing the way the back-office works.
Until recently, a focus on data entry was the norm for the technology for industrial markets. Meaning many software solutions are just thin UI (user interface) on top of a database. As a result, these applications often feel archaic and clunky—and even worse, many are slow, bloated, and convoluted. The industrial industry isn’t alone. Too many are stuck with this kind of software. But recently, there has been a shift to make software that you use at work as sophisticated and easy-to-use as consumer technology.
This new wave of software focuses on ease-of-use and functionality, so you can offload tedious tasks and focus on the parts of your job where you are an expert. Solutions built with consumerization in mind use data to curate experiences, drive insights, and automate processes. These solutions are proactive, easy to use, and (when built correctly) make you feel superhuman.
Tech Makes People Brilliantly Superhuman
As we have entered the era of Industry 4.0, it is necessary to have both people who are great at their job and technology that empowers people to be successful. Companies can go wrong in two ways when it comes to approaching technology:
1. Not implementing technology at all.
As Zach Holmquist, CPO at FieldEye writes in Technology Solution Revolution: What It Means for Oil and Gas ebook:
“After you see what work could look like with the innovations of Industry 4.0, the thought of doing things the same quite frankly sucks. Why would anyone want to do the dishes by hand when a dishwasher is readily available? Now, apply the same logic to your abilities and tasks at work, why would you be doing the task the hard way when there is the ability to offload it onto technology? … Now more than ever, companies need to seek better solutions for traditional practices. Because you don’t want to be stuck wrist-deep in dishwater while your competitor loads a dishwasher.”
2. Not finding the right technology.
Companies often make the mistake of layering on new tools and technology that effectively create more tasks and processes, moving people further from their full potential. On the other hand, well-designed technology eliminates menial tasks, helps work get done faster, and gives employees the tools to achieve new levels of success.
Amazing Humans + Right Tech = Endless Possibilities
Less Tedious Work, More Expertise
Your time at work is valuable. The trivial tasks at work take your precious time away from the things where you truly excel. Applying technology made to simplify or automate the small, tedious parts of your job ultimately empowers you to focus more time and attention on the important things—where your expertise is needed most.
Better Employee Experience
When employees can bypass tedious work and feel valuable for their experience—instead of just being button pushers—it creates a better work environment. A 2018 PWC study found that 90% of C-suite executives say that they pay attention to employee needs when it comes to new technology. But in fact, only 53% of their staff say the same. Better technology means your employees are better equipped and empowered to do their job.
Increased Productivity and Better Output
Technology (and access to data that comes with it) helps companies in industrial markets and their employees improve productivity, make more informed decisions, increase visibility into operations, and so much more. Empowered employees have authority and power over their role, which is amplified in their work.
Empowering Humans with Technology is Our Goal
Empowering operations through technology drives everything we do here at FieldEye—building industrial project management and procurement software designed to bring efficiency to industrial markets.
Replace out-dated solutions and disparate spreadsheets with a centralized solution that brings greater visibility into your spend, simplified vendor management, and a streamlined request for quote process. Find out how FieldEye can empower your team today with a live demo.