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5 Tips for Managing the Digital Workforce of Your Startup

Mar 17, 2017
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With the changes that are happening around us, both in the market and within individuals, it can be hard to keep up. So, in order to keep hiring the best and brightest individuals, the scope that a company searches for has to be widened. A start-up, in comparison to an already established firm, is more adaptable because they are quite new to the market. Digital workers are becoming more and more accessible with the younger generations entering the workforce. Silicon Valley is practically known for innovation. Successful startups in Silicon Valley have been known to create an inclusive, team-oriented culture that puts the focus on employees’ initiative, fast delivery and swift decision making. There is no single way to do that, but there are steps that need to be followed to ensure a strategy that is the best fit for your startup.

Get Creative with Management

Traditional leadership is not the best style to lead the newer generation of digital workers. Enabling employees to be able to work from any location, gives them the flexibility to do multiple tasks at once. It is a known fact that when employees are happy and satisfied, the productivity and loyalty levels increase, which therein creating a stronger workflow and reduces retention.

Putting employees first has been proven to be the most effective management tool. Employing work tools that are easy yet initiative to use allows an ease of use for employees so that they are able to work easily and quickly. Applications that require extensive training are likely to not be used as effectively as easy-to-use applications and software’s, simply because of the amount of preparation each of those requires.

Accept Growth

The digital generation is more willing and able to do different tasks outside of their expertise. Productivity is being increased at a remarkable rate with the newest consumer applications.

Retailer Dick Smith uses mobile applications to help its 3,000 staffers stay in touch daily across the 376 stores within Australia and New Zealand. All this is happening with the digital generation, which is how younger employees are being able to pick up different skills and techniques to further their personal growth. Employers can aid this with training and allows those employees to utilize their new skills in different aspects of the business. Taking the time to see employees’ strengths lets you be able to use those to further your business with the same number of staffers.

Keep Communicating

Keeping our personal lives and professional lives separate has been a part of business for decades. Nowadays, however, social media has shown us that people want to be connected. They want to share, have relevance and context. In order to mix those two points of views together require a very delicate process. There shouldn’t be an overshare of information passed between the employer and their employees. But an employer should still take the time to know their employees’ passions, proficiency’s, and pain points. Communication has always been a key in business, the process and execution have changed, though.

The digital generation is more likely to want set expectations. They prefer to know exactly what is expected of them and their performance. If that was not defined clear enough, they are more likely to be disengaged. Some traditional companies are failing to reward and recognize top performers, nor are they providing feedback, therefore hindering the growth of their employees and the organizational culture.

Allow Freedom

In addition, to allow employees being able to work anywhere, the devices they use are also important. Although there are perks to using office equipment, there are benefits to allowing employees to use their own devices. One of the main reasons is that users have an ease of use with their own devices which speed up their process time. There might also be some applications that they have on their own devices which allow them to work with higher efficiency.

If a company is able to set up an email and/or database server which is accessible for employees through their own personal smartphones and tablets, it not only cuts costs for the company by not providing a company phone but it also more convenient for employees. Just a couple years ago, The State of Colorado became more efficient when it replaced fifteen different old email systems with one common email and calendar system for its 26,000 employees.

Learn What Works (and what doesn’t)

With the change in our digital economy, the way companies manage their employees has changed drastically. No longer can you do power games, or inaccessible leadership. Employees now prefer freedom and flexibility over the structure. They wish for flexibility to have a life outside of work but still have the chance to be considered vital to an organization. The digital generation are the future workforce.

There is no one better to have than a generation of individuals that grew up immersed in the digital world. They want to grow and advance in their professions but also to be meaningful and get rewarded for their work. They enter the workforce already having a multitude of experience in using consumer web services, mobile applications and, the biggest of all, social media. With that use, they are proficient enough to learn how to use just about any application but would prefer to use applications and software’s that are as consumer-friendly, just as their social applications are.

The newer generations also expect and need, a level of openness and transparency in their work environment. They thrive in collaborative and team-oriented tasks which is because of their social nature online. As said by Nitin Sethi, a Chief Commercial Consultant, “Millennials are looking for a culture that helps them experiment and learn as they grow. They are looking at employers who are willing to keep investing in them to help them develop skill sets and capabilities that will always keep them relevant in the broader job market.”

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