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June 26, 2014

From Gatekeeper to Landscaper – How IT Can Shape the Modern Workforce

Gigaom Research looks at how new technologies in today’s workplace are changing IT’s role

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We are proud to present this latest report from Gigaom Research on The Modern Workforce.  This report is the second in a series of three that analyzes two global surveys of both young workers (ages 18-34) and the IT professionals and decision-makers who support them. (See the first in the series here.)

Gigaom Research’s objective is to help tech decision-makers better understand their evolving workforces, so that those decision-makers can do what all great IT pros strive to do:  align people, technologies and business objectives.

This report, sponsored by Adobe Document Services and authored by Stowe Boyd, Gigaom’s lead analyst on the future of work, helps IT executives and buyers understand:

-what the modern workforce thinks it needs to succeed in a rapidly changing world of mobile-first communications and new work-collaboration technologies;

-how IT is supporting those needs and overall corporate objectives;

-and if there are gaps between worker expectations and IT requirements and how technology buyers can address them.

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So what do we find most interesting in this report?  According to Gigaom:

-Increased business agility comes from technologies that influence work tempo and the best tools are those that have a design which doesn’t distract us from  the work itself.

-Businesses gain advantage by speeding up new tool adoption so the workforce has a range of work tools that match different types of activities.

-Usage of tools like file sync-and-share and cloud enterprise apps is up more than 30% compared to only a few years ago.

-The role of IT is shifting toward creating a technology landscape in which productivity and innovation flourish.

Boyd also writes, “If anything, IT professionals risk falling into the trap of Amara’s Law: “We tend to overestimate the effect of a technology in the short run and underestimate the effect in the long run.”  (Made us wonder if the long-term effect of Adobe Acrobat was underestimated when it debuted 20 years ago.)

So according to the 18 – 34 year old workers surveyed, what will be used less in the next year or two?  Snail mail or face-to-face meetings?  Both will decline, according to Boyd – but face-to-face meetings will decline faster than stamps and envelopes.

To read the complete versions of either the first or second research report on The Modern Workforce, please click here to download .

Stay tuned for part 3 coming soon!

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