‘Technology Quotient’: a critical factor in fast, effective and profitable digital transformation
In the second of two articles on digital transformation, I explore the importance of improving workforce ‘TQ’ — the ability to learn continuously through new technology application — and how the Workday platform supports that.
TQ: a critical factor for digital transformation
The pandemic magnified the need for digital transformation, so Accenture began by researching how large organizations were honing their digital edge. In doing so, we discovered critical factors missing from many businesses’ methodologies plus an urgent need for ‘Digital Fluency’.
In my first article, I looked at Digital Foundations as one pillar of Digital Fluency. In this article, I’ll focus on TQ as a second pillar and discuss both the importance of equipping the workforce to adapt to the rapid pace of change and how Accenture and Workday are leading organizations in their reskilling journeys.
Pushing the digital skills boundaries
Our original study revealed that, although digital tools are valued by workers and they have the basic competency to use them, many workers are lagging in their ability to exploit these tools to their maximum effect and therefore missing opportunity in ‘the new currency of digital skills’. That’s why we believe it is so important to improve the digital workforce’s TQ — workers’ enthusiasm, value and expertise seen across technologies — and why applications like Workday are critical components in that process.
Understand your workforce
The first step towards improved TQ is to map and understand fully your workforce’s existing skill levels. Only by recognizing, preparing, and teaching your people can you consistently build up your workforce TQ.
In this kind of HR exercise, it is critical to understand the different types of personalities within each organization, so we mined our research data and identified four distinct digital worker personas — applicable across all industries, geographies and functions:
The Remote Collaborator
These employees are engaged, experienced and enthusiastic. They are likely to be in a middle manager role, with a long tenure at their organization. They’d like help with seeing how digital technologies can add greater value to their work.
The Disciplined Achiever
This persona is participatory, helpful and eager to learn. They have less education than the other three personas, and like to have clear roles and responsibilities. They’d prefer to work in cross-functional teams to see how digital enables different parts of the organization.
The Adaptive Team Player
These employees are flexible, personable and the emerging talent in an organization. They’re early career professionals and are enthusiastic about the possibilities that digital can create, but would like to grow their skills by learning with their peers.
The Relentless Innovator
This group is likely to play a key role in honing your digital edge. They’re smart, seasoned and exploratory and are probably in a leadership role. They like to see the bigger picture and want to explore the boundaries of what’s possible with digital. The prospect of leading digital pilots and agile ways of working motivates them.
By recognizing these personas across your workforce, you can begin to map out what each of your employees needs on the Digital Fluency journey. Use data analytics to determine the readiness of each persona and your workforce in general to work with digital technologies. You can then pinpoint any gaps in people’s enthusiasm, skillset or relevancy of value, and assess what each colleague needs to improve your workforce’s overall TQ.
Once you’ve identified the personas, you can then design performance, rewards and learning around each type of digital worker. For instance, someone might want public acknowledgement, such as a shout out, whereas someone else may want monetary benefits or flexible learning time.
Skills are the fundamental currency of work
Workday is the ideal digital platform to help you visualize the skills across your workforce and identify shortfalls against current and future needs. Workday’s Skills Cloud adds value by illustrating what makes up a skill and how different skills are related. As you build digital skills across personas, the platform leverages machine learning and graph technology not only to capture skillsets across the business and map them but also to drive your future workforce through providing worker-level recommendations to further develop a new skill or recommend what a worker’s next skill could be. For instance, someone highly skilled in Excel will probably also have — or could have — skills in data analysis, reporting and other tasks. Workday’s machine learning capabilities will therefore make appropriate re-skilling and role recommendations based on that core skill.
Workday is a great example of how technology and people can come together to solve problems and transform the workplace. The platform constantly refines its Skills Cloud with data from customers and industries to better understand the needs of customers now and in the future. So, if one of your employees gains a new digital skill, all the insights and recommendations in Workday are updated, enabling you to have an up-to-the-minute dynamic representation of the digital edge across your entire workforce to better inform your future workforce needs.
Together, Accenture and Workday make work better
Combining our leading Workday partnership with our Talent & Organization/ Human Potential capabilities, Accenture can deploy Workday not just as a modern digital HR core but also as part of a broader business and workforce transformation that accelerates our clients’ paths to value. Through embedding Workday across the organization with a digital fluency mindset and framework, organizations can increase their workforce TQ to drive ongoing upskilling; and as TQ increases, so does the ability to create ongoing innovation. While the journey starts at the individual worker level, the value disseminates across the organization.
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