Ethics in the digital workplace and the impact of a bad adoption

eXo Platform Blog

In a previous blog post, we covered the 3 key metrics to measure the effectiveness of a digital workplace solution. It is important to continuously check for: usage, engagement and efficiency metrics to see whether your digital workplace is improving productivity and team dynamics within your organization.

In this post we will dive into the ethical responsibilities of employers and how a poor adoption of a solution can be the root of unethical practices in the workplace.

Ethics in the workplace:

Ethics in the workplace are defined as the set of moral principles that guide people’s actions within an organization. Ethical codes and standards vary between companies and industries. Both employers and employees have to comply with these regulations. It is the employer’s responsibility to implement the ethical standards and company culture to employees and provide an optimal working environment. Failing  to do so can have impact negatively on employees on a number of aspects, thus the entire organization. The impacts of bad decisions and unethical practices in the workplace are well documented under industry and government regulations. But organizations still needs to understand  the ethical impact of a digital workplace on employees well-being.

Digital workplace ethics

The primary goal behind every digital workplace implementation is to enhance the work experience thus improving productivity. But a bad adoption of the solution or simply choosing the wrong one can have a bad effect on your employees. These effects can range from reduced productivity and poor collaboration to even social and emotional harm.

The effects are a bit straight forward. You implement the wrong solution, you don’t train your employees to use the solution correctly or the solution you have in place is just bad, this will lead to stress and frustration (emotional harm) and decreased personal productivity and team collaboration.

To ensure a better adoption of your digital workplace and have your employees onboard, you can check this blog post. It covers the 3 strategies companies HAVE to implement for a successful digital workplace adoption. But what about the practices companies have to avoid?

Here is a list of the worst practices to avoid when implementing your digital workplace.

  1. Not understanding your needs

It is crucial in business to understand your needs and to plan accordingly. Researching and planning go hand in hand. A failure to do one or the other can lead to a solution that you don’t need or a bad solution.

  1. Not communicating the value to your employees

In order for your digital workplace solution to bear results, the first thing you need is to get your employees onboard and understand how it will facilitate the way they work in a positive way. A failure to communicate the message across will increase the already existent resistance to change and reliance on traditional tools like email and portals.

  1. Poor design and user experience

You did your research, planning and your employees seem onboard to use the solution but all the feedback you are getting is negative. The negative feedback can be explained by poor UX and UI designs.UX refers to user experience design, in other words how your employees engage and interact with the product and whether it is useful for them. On the other hand, UI design refers to user interface and it is basically the look and style of the solution. UX and UI are interdependent. You can have a solution that responds to your employees’ needs but that is not easy to navigate or easy on the eye and vice versa. This can be very frustrating to your employees so it is very important to choose a solution that combine both UX and UI effectively.

  1. No or poor training

Don’t expect your employees to get up and running using the solution from the get go. As explained above, the solution may be complicated to use. Training may help to address the situation and avoid your employees getting frustrated by the solution.

  1. No rules or guidelines

The major concern that comes to mind when we talk about social media and social platforms is bullying and harassment. Within a work environment, it is the employer’s responsibility to protect his/her employees from such practices by establishing rules and guidelines that are aligned with the company’s overall policies.

Although the negative effects of bad digital workplace implementation occur frequently within companies, they are yet to be taken into consideration or given the same importance as safety or health issues at work.

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Product Marketing Specialist

I am a product marketing specialist and tech enthusiast. My role at eXo is to support marketing and operational activities for our digital collaboration tool. I will mainly blog about digital transformation, collaboration, open-source tech, and how to navigate through eXo platform.

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