In an increasingly data-centric world, it isn’t surprising that data is the new currency for IT organizations striving to keep pace with the changing user demands of today’s hybrid workforce. But how do Team Member Experience (TMX) teams begin to make sense of the virtual sea of system, incident, user satisfaction and sentiment data to make sure they are delivering the best, most reliable tools and technologies to enable team members everywhere they work?
For TMX at Dell Digital, Dell’s IT organization, the answer is a data-centric practice featuring a newly launched TMX Data Platform and a laser focus on our team members.
About a year ago, Dell Digital TMX began to transform the way we use data to better tailor our services to the 130,000 team members we serve across Dell in response to the evolving hybrid workplace environment.
We had to find new ways to support team member productivity, enable them with the right technology and ensure that technology worked optimally for them across different personas and locations.
The TMX organization launched an effort centered on putting together tools and processes to gather and leverage TMX data via a single platform. We also put in place practices to see data in real time to better detect, fix and even prevent issues before they arise.
While it is still early in our transformation, we are already seeing improved system operations and positive feedback from team members. System operations gains thus far include reducing the mean time it takes to address IT issues from hours to minutes. We have also avoided PC performance issues by pinpointing application problems in real time.
More Direct Engagement with Team Members
TMX has long tracked team member feedback via a quarterly “Pulse” survey in which a sampling of team members ranks various aspects of IT services. We have a Voice of the Team Member group that continues to conduct that survey but has expanded its conversation with team members through a number of engagement channels, including a volunteer champions network.
The champions’ approach is to create a representative sample of the entire company, through the engagement of volunteers whose feedback can be cascaded to relevant organizations.
We provide champions with information and context around what we are doing, whether it’s security related or providing new features. We offer them pilots, so that they can try new things and give us feedback around whether tools are helpful or not.
Pilot studies give us empirical data around new offerings. If we’re seeing increases in team member satisfaction scores (CSAT) in the pilot groups, we can forecast similar success when we roll these technology services out to the whole company. Also, we gain information about the systems data and how it correlates to the improvements we achieve in CSAT.
However, these new engagement statistics are part of a much broader TMX data focus that correlates experience data with systems and incident data as well as business metrics to create a proactive and value-add IT support model.
Creating a Central TMX Platform
TMX began its effort to create a centralized platform by reviewing the wide range of telemetry data that has long been generated about IT systems, tools and incidents but tracked separately with more than one hundred disparate dashboards.
Our goal is to correlate systems data to satisfaction data to ensure our services match team member needs in the face of changes in the demands of each worker persona. By leveraging real-time data on everything from collaboration tools to PC performance to home Wi-Fi, we can better understand our systems, how they’re operating and how they come together as one experience for our team members.
We turned to our team of data scientists to create the process to acquire and groom as much of that relevant data as possible and consolidate it into a data platform that is architected to drive new insights. Our platform is built upon a data lake which aggregates our PC, Zoom and Teams data and we’re working on incorporating our Pulse Survey data into the platform.
Our strategy is to start with bringing in data sets around the largest pain points or experiential gaps that we have. PC, Zoom and Teams data were prioritized because they are some of the biggest and most essential tools that people are using in this hybrid working environment. As we add team member satisfaction data, we are rounding out our effort to capture a multi-lens view of IT experiences.
Navigating the Sea of Data
Once we bring together the massive amount of IT systems data, the challenge then becomes how to figure out what’s important to correlate to team member experience, create proper thresholds and how to track it. For that, we needed another team—the Experience Engineering team.
The team applies Site Reliability Engineering (SRE) principles to our end-user computing ecosystem. That allows us to leverage the data platform to view what’s going on in the team member IT environment in near real time.
The Experience Engineering team is in an ongoing effort to create a central dashboard to monitor our IT productivity systems. It looks at the systems’ health and reliability, establishing baselines for what a well-performing system looks like, and thresholds that indicate that the systems are reaching a critical point in which experience is likely to be impacted. When systems indicate there are issues, we engage the relevant IT product team, engineering resources and support resources to proactively go and address the issue.
This allows us to identify and address friction points to avoid team member frustration, as well as avoiding incidences from ever being generated. We’re about a quarter of the way to where we want to be with correlating systems data to experiential data, but we’re making great progress and are excited about what lies ahead.
Besides avoiding incidents, we plan to leverage the data platform insights to make technology recommendations. For example, as we mature in this process, we will be able to understand which tools and experiences help team members to be the most satisfied and empowered to achieve the best results. We then make recommendations to others, in similar roles, based on those insights in a privacy-protected way. That means we can tailor that technology to others in similar roles.
The expectation around team member experience and work tools has never been more important in terms of attracting and retaining the best talent in the marketplace. We believe our evolving data-centric approach is key to meeting those expectations and maintaining a competitive edge in the changing workplace environment.
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