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Empowerment or exodus? How organizations can attract and retain talent through collaboration

With evolving technologies enabling people to work anytime, anywhere, it’s no surprise that the 21st century workforce is increasingly shunning the rigid 9 to 5 world of traditional offices.

In Canada, more than 1.7 million paid employees – those not self-employed – worked from home in 2008 at least once a week, up almost 23 per cent from the 1.4 million in 2000, according to the latest Statistics Canada report on the subject in 2010.

This trend has been driven in part by disruptive technologies such as cloud computing and user preferences led by a new generation of technology-savvy users, namely millennials. To give employees the flexibility they crave, some organizations are implementing “choose-your-own-workstyle” (CYOW) models.

Power to the workforce
By leveraging on-premise and cloud services to deliver a personalized digital workspace, CYOW gives users a say in where they work and employers a way to empower their employees through collaboration. In order to attract and retain talent, successful organizations are increasingly adopting collaborative workspaces that enable employees to work anywhere, anytime and on any device.

And a little goes a long way: organizations that put CYOW programs in place in 2017 will increase employee retention rates by over 10 per cent by 2020, according to a 2015 Technology Advice survey by Global Workforce Analytics. The survey also found that 82 per cent of workers would increase their loyalty to their employer while nearly 40 per cent have refused a promotion or quit because such options weren’t on the table.

Since collaboration means different things to different organizations, CDW Canada offers a wide range of technologies, including IM, telephony, video, file sharing, email and more, which can be delivered through on-premises, cloud or hybrid solutions.

Going rogue
While choosing the right technology for your organization can be difficult, “collaboration disconnection” is too important to ignore. If your organization can’t keep workers connected, they will find a way with one of their personal devices, putting your company’s data at risk. This is known as “rogue IT” and can pose a great threat to your organization’s data.

However, by implementing technologies, including Web and video conferencing, social media, office and mobile phones, email and cloud storage, organizations can encourage collaboration.

Follow the leader
Empowering employees through collaboration won’t happen with technology alone.

In addition to having the right tools to improve workplace collaboration, business leaders can take an active role by providing inspiration through using collaboration tools when interacting with coworkers; fostering creativity by rewarding creative thinkers with recognition, bonuses and promotions; and setting aside private spaces as well as encouraging cross-functional interactions.

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