Gearing up for disruption in the workplace

  • Telcos
  • Monday, 25 Mar 2019

FOR a number of years now, the world has been talking about how the likes of Uber and Airbnb have disrupted the transport and hospitality industries respectively. But is this what disruption really is about?

True disruption goes beyond a competitor invading another's turf. It begins from within an enterprise and how it thinks about changing its existing business model.

Disruption is significant in South-East Asia because it has 630 million people, half of whom are between 15 and 30 years of age.

The young ones now entering the workforce grew up in a world more connected than ever before. Their expectations in terms of speed of communication and ease of access to information have put a lot of pressure on traditional enterprises to adopt a digital culture in order to attract the new generations into their workforce.

These digital natives are driving change. They are interacting with brands differently from the generation before. But while young people may lead the way, it isn’t just a young people phenomenon.

They may be the catalyst for change but that does not mean it stops with them.

Seismic shifts Digital natives aren't the only shift in play. Three other broad trends that complement the changes have risen too: technology, digitisation and mobility.

Let's explore how these trends affect the current workforce.

Malaysians spend an average of eight hours on the Internet, almost four hours on mobile Internet per day. The report also added that 61% of the population believe new technologies offer more opportunities than risks.

Fueling this is the rise of the Internet of Things (loT), cloud computing, mobile broadband connectivity and smartphone penetration, all of which have enabled new services not previously possible. With the cloud and loT, businesses can connect to critical business applications and data anytime, anywhere, real-time and securely, turning things into intelligent assets.

Mobile phone penetration in Malaysia stands at 131% and this coupled with the coverage ubiquity, the processing power of the smartphone and useful mobile apps means that more people can be connected remotely and they can collaborate outside the office more than before, making work no longer a place people go to, but rather an activity they do.

Today’s world is increasingly going digital. Some early adopters have taken to this trend, such as embracing ecommerce, and beefing up their social media presence. However, going digital isn’t just about getting online. It's about rethinking how business is done. It’s about evaluating how you as an enterprise have been doing things and visualising how you would do things differently.

It is about reimagining how you can collaborate with new trends like the “as-a-service” and “pay-as-you-go” model, so as to reduce your operational challenges and keep your customers and employees happier.

Tying up all these is the recognition that the concept of work is changing. A recent survey noted that eight in 10 Malaysian respondents preferred the flexibility and autonomy in the way they work, as they believed it could increase work productivity and improve job satisfaction.

According to a report, for agile working to succeed, teams need to be more inclusive and collaborative while given a chance to be heard, regardless of their position. They also need to encourage people to adopt new ways of working and thinking that lead to long-term behaviour changes.

What can you do?
The coming together of technology, digitisation and mobile work styles to promote agile working may sound great on paper but how does one go about doing it?

Start by asking what kind of strategic outcomes your organisation wants to achieve and then proceed to engineer solutions that will be able to meet these objectives.

Because agile working means employees will move away from a time-based concept to a task-based one, therefore they need to be connected in order to communicate and collaborate effectively. In evaluating the kinds of solutions for a mobile workforce, you'll need to identify a solution that’s flexible, easy to implement and budget for.

Flexibility is about acquiring a solution that is powerful, yet customisable for all kinds of business sizes, whether it’s 10 or 500 people. Flexibility also means having tools and features to hold your employees accountable and to ensure productivity does not suffer just because one is not in the office.

Any solution would need to be easily implemented without taking more than six weeks to deploy. This must be complemented by a great user experience to encourage instead of discourage usage.

A solution needs to be upfront with the costs of operation and not have complicated billing structures. In this respect, a “pay-as-you-go” model would fit best as such a scheme can be considered an operational expenditure instead of a capital one.

Lastly, a solution is only as strong as its weakest link and enterprises have to ensure that products and their service providers can deliver security in an uncompromised way, and that means not only end points but the entire solution chain.

“Our integrated solutions help businesses of all sizes succeed by simplifying and improving the way they work. Our mobile workforce proposition is specifically designed for businesses that want their employees to be more productive, no matter where they are,” says head of Enterprise, Paul McManus. 

Mobile workforce
As an integrated and trusted solution provider, Maxis has the capabilities and solutions that can support a mobile workforce.

Among some of the solutions on offer from Maxis Business are:
- Connectivity: A range of business mobile and loT plans that help to connect both your human and physical assets, which you can choose based on your business needs.

- Zerolution360 for business: Enjoy the latest devices, worry-free with no upfront costs, which come with insurance, upgrades, screen replacement and more, while Maxis manages these devices for you.
- Managed mobility: A solution that allows you to push applications to devices remotely, and secure data on mobile devices, while tracking device location.

-Workforce: An easy-to-use workforce management solution to digitalise forms and easily assign and monitor tasks to employees in the field. 

CXO checklist
There isn’t any doubt the mobile workforce is the wave of the future. So what are the most effective steps you can take to make this journey? Here is a checklist:
- Is your top management involved in driving change?
- Have you reviewed what processes need to be changed and/or modified in order to support the mobile workforce?
- Have you shortlisted those in the marketplace who have the expertise to make the changes you want?
- Have you established a digital customer team that can cut across all silos and empower them to make changes?
- Have you appointed digital-first people and made them ambassadors for change?

Find out more today at or call 1800-82-1919