The Modern Workplace:
What is it and why is it important?

What is The Modern Workplace?

The modern workplace is a concept which acknowledges the change in ways of working (particularly over the last few years) and embraces that change, often with the help of modern, digital workplace solutions to enable the way people want to work.

The benefits to your business >

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Microsoft has been at the forefront of this change in recent years, after coining the phrase. They’ve created a hub of digital tools to support a modern workplace, which has naturally led to the belief that creating one is solely about adopting technology – but it’s more than that. The modern workplace is about the people that make up a business and creating a workplace that drives communication, productivity, efficiency and setting teams up to work in an environment that drives culture and collaboration.

On the back of those key drivers, many digital solutions have emerged. In short, their purpose is to:

  • Unify communications
  • Connect teams, wherever they work
  • Improve working experiences
  • Promote productivity
  • Simplify many workplace processes
  • Optimise employer spend


Why is a Modern Workplace Important?

Many moons ago, technology had a core purpose, which was to maximise output of teams. But in recent years, attitudes have changed to the way technology can support business and with that change has come new technologies. In workplaces today, businesses adopt technologies to empower their teams and promote collaboration and productivity.

Modern, connected technology is becoming the norm, not the exception and it’s becoming a key driver when attracting and retaining talent too.


The Benefits to Your Business

Workplaces in recent years have evolved and attitudes to how people work, and certainly where people work, has changed rapidly. Many employers have adopted remote working and lots of businesses are leaning toward a hybrid-working model.

In the case that you have some people in an office and some at home – even some in different countries – it’s vital that your systems are connected for optimum communication and so that data is available in real-time.

Employee Communication and Collaboration
This accounts for so much more than just one-on-one conversations between staff in different locations, it means better communication and collaboration across all levels, departments, locations and between hierarchies. It means better access to tools that allow for communication, easier access to files and document storage and collaboration on projects. All that equates to informed decision making to drive business growth and time and resource saved, with accessible lines of communication.

Simplified Processes for End-Users
A modern workplace harnesses technologies that are simplified and easy for end-users to adopt. In most cases, employers will opt to manage configuration behind the scenes and keep access available to chosen administrators. That means you can control settings so they suit your business and everyone is working from the same playbook for easy adoption and use. Not to mention, many of the apps businesses opt for to implement a modern workplace, are already used and often familiar for teams e.g., Microsoft Teams, SharePoint, Microsoft 365 etc.

Work From Anywhere, Anytime
The office can be anywhere now: in the office, coworking spaces, people’s dining rooms and even on the road. A modern workplace means synced data and accessibility. It’s about being connected when you need to be, wherever you are, all the time. With the right use of technologies, a connected workforce is simple to achieve and sustain and can be key for attracting talent and helping drive business strategies and revenue.


The Benefits to Your Employees

Empower Employees to Work The Way They Want
The jobs landscape has changed enormously in recent years and has become much more competitive for employers. Employees expectations toward where they work and how they work is very different to what they were only a few years ago. Employers are now finding that when their digital tools enhance their employees work experience, they’re more fulfilled in their roles, more productive and more likely to stay.

Capitalise on Opportunities
With a modern workplace approach, it’s much easier for employees to retrieve information and data for review and analysis. With the right information at their fingertips, employees can respond faster to business opportunities and work collaboratively and creatively.

Improve Productivity
Faster, easier, happier ways of working. Connected systems, easy sharing of data, real-time data available at all times, to everyone. By connecting your systems, processes and teams you’ll experience a better working culture and help your teams feel connected, wherever they may work from.


How to Implement a Modern Workplace

You might first be wondering, what sort of tools are included in the journey to becoming a modern workplace? The easiest place to start is with a trusted brand like Microsoft, not only because you probably already use many of the products, but because they are at the forefront of creating a more connected workplace.
So, what could be included in the Microsoft Modern Workplace – many products of which you probably already use?

Office apps and email: Microsoft Office 365

Telephony: Microsoft Business Voice

Devices: Enterprise Mobility + Security

Apps: Teams, Power Automate, Power BI

Document management: SharePoint, OneDrive

Data storage: Azure

These products help to make up the Microsoft Modern Workplace proposition as a whole (and there’s many more you can adopt for a variety of different outcomes). But, that doesn’t mean to say you must adopt them all in order to create and sustain a modern workplace of your own.

Creating a modern workplace is about adopting technologies which work for your business and support your teams in their role, promoting productivity and better communication. Many elements of your own modern workplace infrastructure could come from outside of the Microsoft suite. Businesses tend to opt for Microsoft products because it’s a reliable brand you can trust and businesses are familiar with their products, so end-user useability is simplified.

For many businesses which rely heavily on financial data to drive key decision-making, or for those who use stock and order processing, warehousing or need real-time data and analytics, the use of ERP systems are key in terms of simplifying processes and driving the business forward for growth.

ERP Systems and The Modern Workplace

When it comes to ERP and creating a modern workplace, it would be key to consider systems that complement modern workplace practices – ones which integrate with your other systems for data, information and knowledge sharing and which you can rely upon for reporting. Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central is the most powerful cloud-based ERP system when it comes to integrating seamlessly with your existing Microsoft products which are already used by your teams, and the reason millions of users around the world rely on it as an ERP system.
Introducing Business Central to your modern workplace >


Overcoming The Challenges of Adopting a Modern Workplace

Major changes in a workplace can be met with some apprehension from employers and employees alike. There’s a lot to consider, but that shouldn’t put you off. Stagnation can stunt growth, revenue and make you less attractive as an employer. We’ve outlined some of the common challenges and their solutions below, to help put you at ease.

Getting Staff Onboard
The modern workplace is all about communication and collaboration, but if your teams aren’t onboard it can be difficult to create a modern workplace that really has an impact. You want to ensure that you engage your teams in the process, if you want to implement effectively. Conduct surveys and interviews and take the time to get team input. It’s often worth seeking outside help too, from a partner that can offer fresh perspective and is experienced helping businesses implement a modern workplace.

The HBP Group’s customer, Badminton England, worked alongside our experts to introduce a Modern Workplace approach, to drive business growth and connect their systems and teams.

“Badminton England has quite a few regional staff. They are generally based from home and out and about, so to be able to access all their files or their folders or their information wherever they are is really, really useful.”

Security and Stagnation
For many businesses, their hands were forced during the pandemic to rush into modern work practices that were less common at the time, like working from home or agile workforces. Teams were ushered home with not much more than a laptop and a VPN, but it’s probably no longer fit for purpose. These legacy systems and processes reduce productivity and probably cost you money in the long-run as a result and affect how secure your systems are.

When you adopt a modern workplace, you’ll want to consider all of the touchpoints for your teams. When they work from home do they have access to all of the same data as they would in the office, are records accessible, can they communicate as easily and are your systems as secure as they would be if they were working from an office base? These are the types of questions you’ll need to consider – remember, a modern workplace is as much for you as it is your teams. When done correctly, everyone benefits from safer, faster and simplified ways of working.

Finding a partner who can help you deliver value
With over 30 years of experience, multiple awards and accreditations, including our Microsoft Gold Partner status (the highest level you can get), and thousands of happy customers, we can help virtually any business implement a Modern Workplace. Whilst we live and breathe Dynamics 365 Business Central, we’re also a leading IT provider and have more IT engineers than most IT companies have staff. So if you’re looking to adopt a more modern workplace, we can help at almost every single touch point – from IT systems, communication and collaboration platforms, to cloud-based accounts and security.

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One step closer to implementing a Modern Workplace

Request a Discovery Session and an AAT accredited consultant will help you understand if Business Central is the right fit for you. As a Microsoft Gold Partner (the highest level) and with over 30 years’ experience, you can have peace of mind that you’ll come away with the answers you need.

Book a Discovery Session >
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