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Perspectives

Employees Want More Technology Choice (And Smart Companies are OK with That)

Written By: Davin Wilfrid
December 18, 2018
4 min read

What do people really value in an employer? They want to be paid fairly, have opportunities to grow their careers, and be part of a team that succeeds. But for information workers who spend a lot of time working on screens, choice of technology also plays a role.

We recently surveyed over 300 Quickbase customers to learn what matters most to them when it comes to workplace tools. According to The Empowered Workforce Report 2018, 81% of people said it was very important to have the ability to choose their own technology solutions at work. And 79% said the ability to choose their own technology at work would be a factor when considering a new job.

The demand for technology choice is driven by several factors, including:

  1. A workforce increasingly populated by technology-savvy employees
  2. Companies prioritizing agility to stave off disruption
  3. The rise of intrapreneurship and process improvement

Smart leaders are managing this demand by investing in a new type of employee — the DIY problem solver. These employees are defined by their willingness to take initiative, ability to learn and pivot quickly, and their ability to build their own support structures using technologies available to them.

Companies like Southwest Airlines and Tesla are just two examples of innovative companies that drive bottom-line value by empowering their employees to solve problems their own way.

Empowering Tools for an Empowered Workforce

Platforms like Quickbase can play a key role in enabling these problem solvers to excel. Because these platforms empower people to build highly-customized applications without traditional software development skills, people who develop no-code platform skills tend to solve a wide array of problems in a short amount of time.

According to the Empowered Workforce Report, companies turn to Quickbase first to support processes that have outgrown Microsoft Excel spreadsheets. Within three years, a majority of these companies are solving more than five different process problems.

What’s more, skills in no-code platforms like Quickbase are far easier to develop than learning a programming language. Business professionals can pick up no-code skills on the job, with 39% of Quickbase builders surveyed using no-code skills gained while at another company.

The Power of Diversity

Your organization and its problems are not homogeneous, but chances are your technical teams are. According to one recent survey, only 5% of technical workers are non-white and only 24% are women. By removing many of the obstacles to building technology solutions, no-code app platforms like Quickbase broaden and strengthen the pool of people responsible for solving problems with technology.

Of the Quickbase builders we surveyed, 46% were women. We did not ask about race, but we also know that 73% of Quickbase builders work in departments outside of IT — meaning they are more likely to reflect the overall composition of the organization itself. In terms of age, 44% of Quickbase builders are millennials, while 43% are members of Generation X.

The Benefits of the Empowered Workforce

The empowered workforce is about more than diversity and inclusion. It’s about delivering real results for your organization. We found that no-code platforms like Quickbase made a big impact on organizations, with 89% saying they saw a direct improvement in business performance using no-code apps. 48% said they’d replaced other, more expensive, software or services.

Not only that, but these business improvements have minimal impact on the ability of IT teams to deliver mission-critical technologies. In fact, a majority of Quickbase customers say their IT teams are not actively involved in supporting or building on Quickbase (though in some instances IT does build no-code apps for end users).

Conclusion

The world is much different than it was even five years ago. Today’s DIY employees demand better ways to work, and smart organizations are finding ways of empowering them with tools and technologies that enable complex problem solving in a fast, secure, and cost-effective way.

The Empowered Workforce 2018 Infographic

Quickbase's 4th Annual Report: The Empowered Workforce Infographic

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Written By: Davin Wilfrid
Davin Wilfrid manages Content & Community at Quickbase. When he's not playing or watching baseball, he builds terrible ukuleles.

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