Is technology helping our productivity? Well, it all depends. According to studies, while having more technology may initially boost productivity, too much can be a hindrance. Technology alone will not make an organization more effective.
Productivity is more than just providing more tools, saving time, or eliminating distractions. It is often largely dependent on the people hired. Employees frequently represent the most expensive budget item for a small business. In addition to the cost, the workforce is quickly being reshaped by an entirely different generation.
As this new group of workers takes over a larger percentage of the workforce, the expectations around traditional work environments are being shifted. Technology is making it easier to work anywhere. As the reliance on remote workplaces, mobile devices, and flexible workdays continues to grow, businesses are increasingly challenged by the need to innovate, create, and differentiate.
An article by Kevin Kuske in Business News Daily states, “In this world – being together and apart both matter.” He continues to explain that having employees in the same space is important for creating a strong culture, making connections, and building trust. In addition, ensuring employees have choice and control over their work is essential.
Since small businesses often live and die by the talent that they hire and keep, it’s paramount for owners to support creativity and productivity by:
- Ensuring that individuals are a good fit for the culture.
- Allowing freedom of expression in the workplace.
- Developing the big picture.
- Providing choice over when and how employees work.
- Encouraging connection with others.
Even with these practices in place, companies often struggle with how to best balance tools, processes, and people to make the workplace more effective. Technology can definitely help boost output, but only when incorporated in meaningful ways. Emphasis still needs to be placed on the “human side” of the organization. Without the ability to connect, even the most technologically advanced organizations will fail.