istock 929852090

One of the great things about being in a start-up venture, or working on a new business project, is the way everyone pulls together to achieve a common goal.

With good collaboration comes close communication and higher levels of innovation and productivity. Everyone benefits: the people involved, the business and its customers.

It’s no wonder why business leaders, regardless of company size, strongly desire to foster a more open, collaborative culture. They want to put an end to siloed innovation, slow decision-making, and especially poor communication – with the latter cited by 67% of workers in a Harvard study as the largest obstacle to collaboration.

So how do they go about creating a more open, collaborative culture within the workplace?

Aligning business and IT

In a survey of 100 European IT leaders, conducted by IDG in partnership with Box and Okta, 82% said the major advantage they want from digital business and digital workplaces is for the company to act quickly on opportunities, without delay.

The second most important outcome, for two-thirds (66%) of IT leaders, is a modern technology stack that achieves IT savings, and accelerates payback. In other words, for collaboration to be effective, it must have both business and IT benefits.

This is where secure, open cloud solutions have become a game-changer for the business, its employees and the IT team. Not only do they help build a collaborative culture, they also facilitate information access and sharing across the organisation.

For IT, cloud collaboration means a reduction in IT infrastructure and end-user admin and support. And for the business, it means greater performance, powered by more productive, happier employees.

Ease of access

Cloud-based applications can play an important part in developing a digital workplace, one in which colleagues can share information and work together in a flexible way, working across locations, devices and time zones. They can also help overcome some of the more common challenges that people face when sharing content within the organisation.

For example, many workers have to grapple with complicated and time-consuming sign-on processes across devices - an issue for 49% of IT leaders in our survey. Lack of security is also a major problem. Around two fifths of IT leaders expressed their concerns about the lack of advanced security, governance and compliance capabilities their businesses face when sharing content. The same number felt they needed quick and simple authentication to use their tools and systems safely.

Secure, cloud collaboration can help to answer some of these problems. But more importantly, over time, it can lead to streamlined and automated processes, which better enable business growth.

Lastly, manual processes can tie up valuable IT personnel, and make their life repetitive; which is something that cloud-based systems can alleviate. The ability to readily provision and roll out cloud-native applications can save the department time and reduce costs, and this ultimately helps teams to work together more efficiently, and drive the business forward.

Safe sharing

Digital businesses have the potential to reduce operating costs and accelerate business process cycles, half of our survey respondents said. This is why, over the next two years, the majority of IT leaders said they intend to increase their adoption of cloud services.

50% of respondents said it was important to improve employee experience and retention through a modern digital workplace, and also reduce risk by securing all content across the extended enterprise.

In response to requirements such as these, Box and Okta are enabling businesses to offer their employees a secure and productive cloud-based digital workplace.

In addition, the partnership enables organisations to deploy cloud-native apps more quickly, so they can benefit from more streamlined, secure and automated IT processes.

Oxfam was struggling to deliver aid quickly because it would take eight to 12 weeks to set up functioning offices in new locations. Using Box’s content and collaboration platform and Okta’s secure access, Oxfam employees, volunteers and partners gained the ability to instantly manage aid delivery when they arrive at a new location. Oxfam also applied security and compliance policies across its centralised content, maintaining data security and governance and meeting regulatory obligations such as GDPR.

In summary, secure, cloud-based collaboration gives employees the freedom to share information more flexibly and work together more closely; whilst bringing new process efficiencies and cost savings. It’s a win for the business and for IT. So, how could your organisation benefit from having a secure, cloud-based digital workplace?

For more information on this topic watch the webcast from Box & Otka