In our new hybrid, remote, and distributed work world, the role of Information Technology has changed dramatically. Some might even question the relevance of IT when there’s no longer a physical office or an internal network, and all employees are using decentralized, cloud-based tools.
However, as with most traditional corporate functions, IT isn’t disappearing anytime soon. On the contrary, IT is now more instrumental than ever. Modern organizations realize that work-from-anywhere is the future. As Adrian Fiechter (Head of IT at Wolt) said during a recent Learn from Leaders podcast, “IT is the enabler that allows people to work from anywhere.” He goes on to list the many advantages of a remote-first company, such as Wolt with employees working autonomously from 23 different countries, saying, “If you want to have an organization that is fit for the future, if you enable working from anywhere, you’re simply more flexible. You get access to a global talent pool where your competitors who are bound to a location are very limited to the talent in one specific location.”
“IT is the enabler that allows people to work from anywhere.”
- Adrian Fiechter, Head of IT at Wolt
In a modern organization, collaboration now primarily happens online instead of in an office. This means that IT and tools now have much more of a cultural impact. When new employees start with your company, one of the first interactions they have is going to be with IT. Remote onboarding is primarily facilitated by IT, ensuring they have the right hardware and tools access on day one and getting them up to speed on how to use those tools.
Speaking of tools, IT’s choice of collaboration platforms now has a direct impact on company culture. Remote and distributed teams thrive on autonomy with clear direction providing alignment. Selecting centralized, heavy administration legacy tools works against autonomous teams and can negatively affect a highly adaptable and transparent organization.
Providing decentralized tools that allow work-from-anywhere teams to create their own workflows, choose their own ways of collaborating together and across teams, and even enable their own automations and integrations without requiring an administrator who might now be three time zones away can make all the difference.
Of course, without an internal network and collaborating almost entirely online, cloud-based tools must ensure enterprise-grade security. For example, Favro’s collaborative planning platform addresses concerns such as data access controls, authentication, encryption, data governance, and physical data storage, which are crucial to both remote-first and hybrid organizations. Favro’s cloud data security has been vetted by some of the most demanding enterprises on the planet, including EA, SAP, Disney, and PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Favro also has the advantage of facilitating autonomy and providing single-source-of-truth alignment across the entire organization. Favro offers performance and functionality that scales to the size of the biggest enterprises. While it may not replace all of an organization’s existing tools, it’s proven to reduce the overall tool stack significantly.
A good collaboration platform should allow IT to manage all of their varied workflows and stay in sync with the rest of a modern work-from-anywhere organization. IT teams are constantly juggling different help desk requests, new employee onboarding, planned project work, and random urgent, all-hands-on-deck issues. All of this disparate work requires flexibility, which is exacerbated by the fact that all organizations are different.
A one size fits all tool won’t cut it. It’s essential to choose a platform that adapts to your IT team’s ways of working instead of trying to cram your processes into a canned solution that essentially forces you to work in a certain way.
On a day-to-day basis, there’s no telling how many new help desk requests an IT team will have to field. Depending on the size of the organization, there’s typically also a different workflow based on the type of request received. Your workflow management and collaboration tool must provide a portal for employees to enter requests that are automatically routed to the correct IT team members and their unique request resolution flow.
Say there’s a different workflow for software, hardware, and access management tickets. All of these requests come in through the same help desk portal and are captured via the same form. The portal also needs to clearly indicate each ticket’s progress and the expected completion date and time.
When requests are entered a ticket is created and should be routed to the correct person or team based on the request type. It should also be added to the bespoke flow for that ticket type, with corresponding automations, permissions, and ability to involve other parts of the organization if needed.
IT leadership also requires the ability to track the progress of all ticket types in aggregate, including how long each ticket has been in progress and if it’s stuck at a particular resolution stage.
IT management should also have an at-a-glance view into team member capacity and allocation, ensuring that no one person is overallocated and allowing them to rebalance the workload on the fly.
Not only are there different types of help desk requests, but IT teams also have to manage different types of work in general. They’ll have planned project work, such as new hardware rollouts, along with those unplanned tickets, and the unexpected urgent issue. Their workflow tool should support classes of service, allowing them to visually track different types of work separately and take uniquet actions based on work type. For example, if an urgent help desk ticket enters the flow, proper notifications are sent, and the team may stop all other work, swarming the urgent issue until it is resolved.
As stated, in modern organizations, IT plays the all-important role of helping to instill company culture, especially when it comes to new employee onboarding. With remote employees, a smooth onboarding and interaction with IT will be one of their very first impressions of the company and what to expect moving forward. IT must be in constant sync with HR and recruitment as they will play a major part in the overall continuous onboarding effort.
Regardless of location, employees coming into the company must instantly feel enabled to work from anywhere, collaborate with their team members, and get up to speed with tools as quickly as possible. IT’s progress towards onboarding all new hires should be communicated to HR and hiring managers in real-time.
As the world of work has changed, so has the role of IT. By enabling employees to work from anywhere, they are critical to a company culture of autonomy and transparency. IT has the added responsibility of future-proofing its organization, ensuring team members can seamlessly collaborate across geographic locations and timezones, and empowering modern companies to hire the best talent anywhere in the world. IT becomes the first touchpoint for new employees and is the glue that holds the virtual office together for everyone.
Both IT and tools have more strategic and cultural impact than ever before. Favro can help build the IT of the future. Its decentralized, low administration, high capability architecture is ideal for remote first and hybrid companies. The physical silos of offices are gone. Favro ensures that any tool-based silos are also shattered, allowing teams to collaborate across disciplines and simultaneously deliver value to customers.