In another insightful executive webinar hosted on 30 September in partnership with Ernst & Young (EY), Rockwell Automation’s latest instalment of its Management Perspectives series discussed the future of remote work, including aspects of company culture, enabling technologies, and access to information. If you missed the webinar, see the recording online here (available after registration).
Remote work has become critically important in the last few months – and companies prepared to trust remote employees, and provide the right tools and cognitive technologies, will fast surpass their competitors. Leading the discussion on what is set to be the biggest business trend of the year, Michel Huy, Regional Sales Director EMEA Information Solutions of Rockwell Automation, and Axel Hammer, Senior Manager at EY addressed the recent exponential uptake of digital transformation, and what this means for businesses.
Commenting on the urgency of the COVID-19 pandemic, Huy said, “Through this uncertainty, we have seen rapid digital transformation from companies urgently looking to remain operational. This transformation became accepted as the new normal, quite quickly”. Agreeing, Hammer commented on the pace of technological change, previously taking months and years, moving to mere weeks. “Is it that companies work better under pressure? I am sure companies would have preferred a slower transition, but the rapid pace pushed decision makers to manage risks and opportunities of technology adoption.”
The presenters explained how digital tools make it easier to collaborate on and share information, but the success of this relies heavily on driving cultural change. “It is hard to establish and maintain trust through technology,” explained Hammer. “This is something managers need to take into account. You cannot just pour tools into the company – you need to take care of the people behind the screen.”
“An essential evolution of a company’s relationship with their employees is the shift from a command-and-control to a trust-and-empower culture. There are three pillars that should be considered in this technology-enabled way of work,” added Huy. “The first is to invest in a culture of trust, just as you would invest in technology. The second is to focus on the ‘why’ and communicate the purpose of the tools you are implementing. Lastly, remember to not just share data but to share meaningful insights with each other.”
Adding to this, Hammer mentioned that “given the COVID-based hasty installation of technology to keep business running through remote technologies, it’s never too late to re-shape and build your digital strategy. This, plus a related roadmap, can be the cornerstone to make your new-normal be first piece of your future landscape and improvement!”
The Management Perspectives Program is an online community resource designed to inform and inspire managers and executives through a collection of online content and educational materials, with a focus on digital transformation and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT). It is free for any interested professionals seeking insight and peer-to-peer dialogue on IIoT, manufacturing and Industry 4.0. Access the Management Perspectives portal for free, online here.