The rapid advancements in technology have seen the modern day 21st-century workplace incorporate changes that are meant to improve the manner in which activities are carried out. These changes have more recently been deeply entrenched in the modus operandi of most organizations leading to an increased reliance on Information Technology (I.T) and computer networks. As a result, communication in the workplace has been directly affected by these improvements in technology. In the past, it was integral for business partners or associates to meet and discuss the pressing issues that had to be dealt with but presently, such meetings can he held over Skype or “face time” while still achieving the desired goal. A speedy evolution has taken place from those days when simple emails and fax machines were used for important communication to this new digital era where video-conferencing can be used to hold important board meetings (Wallace, 2004). Presently, communication is simply cheap and instant with almost all organizations having their employees that are connected to the internet through their smartphones to social networks and web-conferencing. New technology is important in offering easy collaboration amongst members who find it difficult meeting physically when they are in the same work team (“How Technology Is Changing Work and Organizations (PDF Download Available),” n.d.). The ready availability of web-based solutions such as Trello and Asana are important in an organization’s project management quest (Jonge, D, Scherer, & Rodger, 2007, p. 2). Moreover, the transmission of important images, videos and documents has been simplified with one having the ability to send and receive them from any part of the world, provided they are connected to the internet. The purpose of this research paper is to provide a detailed analysis on how technology inadvertently changed communication in the workplace and the effects that this has had on those working in these areas.
The 21st-century workplace is currently quite different from what it was in the past. Significant changes are now the highlight of a modern day workplace with advancement in technology playing a huge role in this sudden paradigm shift. Changes and improvement are made on nearly a weekly basis with this trend likely, not likely to change anytime soon. As a consequence, communication in the workplace has drastically changed in a short span to accommodate these new changes that aim at improving correspondence. With advancement in technology, experts contend that the ripple effect will be that people will now start working from virtual offices and have an easier time communicating with their business associates that are thousands of miles across the globe. In addition to this, it is also argued by labor experts that employees would now enjoy flexible work schedules that would now see them juggle the many responsibilities and duties that they might be having from any location (Edwards, Edwards, Wahl, & Myers, 2016, p. 247). Change seems inevitable in the cycle of life and it seems as though embracing technology in the workplace would be the only prudent action for civil servants and those in the private sector.
How Technology is changing the way we communicate in the Workplace
To begin with, technology has had far reaching consequences on communication in organizations and workplaces. Technology has been transforming at an unprecedented rate with big data, cloud computing, machine learning, advanced robotics and intelligent manufacturing taking the front seat. With these nascent technologies, communication has been enhanced and made easier with employee output improving by the day (Edwards, Edwards, Wahl, & Myers, 2016, p. 247). Technology in the workplace has been fondly referred to as the beginning of the new industrial revolution with savvy technocratic leaders using it in communication to transform the manner in which they conduct business. In the recent past, social interaction in the workplace was social interaction but studies show that the world is quickly hurtling towards ubiquitous computing (, n.d.). In this new technology, the communication and information environments will be reflected using identification cards that use radio frequency, smart watches and other forms of wearable technology. Equipment such as mobile devices will then be connected directly to information, people, objects, computers and the physical environment that they are in. Such levels of hyper-connection mean that at any given time this technology can act autonomously and has been responsible for changing business and communication models.
With technological advancements in the workplace, the communication teams can now be drawn from an assortment of disciplines and organizations. Such an approach is relatively new, especially in the health sector, and might be viewed by many beneficial in the long run as it fosters interprofessional collaboration. Experts from an assortment of fields get to interact in new environments resulting in the sharing of vital information from different experiences that they have been through in their previous postings. A wealth of knowledge and experience is important of firms, institutions and organizations are to make progress in that they provide with regard to quality. However, these technological improvements mean that it is possible for health care teams to offer their medical services remotely to their patients. Communication between the health care provider and their patients located in far-flung areas becomes an easier task, with the necessary information being disseminated to them when need be. Traveling time for the staff and patients is as a result greatly reduced in effect increasing the productivity, capacity and centralization and capacity of these particular institutions. An example of such an approach is in the treatment of United States war veteran that suffer from psychological wounds of war such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). A negative consequence is that the patient now takes up the role of the caregiver. With many having no medical background, cases of gross miscalculations through self-diagnosis are common and sometimes end in tragedy for patients who would overdose on their own medication.
With improvements in technology, what often follows is an increase in globalization. To make it big in the international market and leave an indelible mark, cooperation need to create the global networks that would see them spread to all corners of the world. It is here that communication becomes vital as their success will be largely depend on the business connections they will make and how well they maintain these lines of communication. Communication is aided directly by technology and its advancements simplifying business transactions between businesses and their clients who, more often than not, are many miles away from where they are located. A simple correspondence between a customer and a firm can see the timely delivery of goods to the recipient without any hitches, leaving both parties satisfied with the result of their business transaction (In Klewes, In Popp, & In Rost-Hein, 2017, p.246). In addition to this, firms are able to set up their satellite offices in any country that they choose to while trying to secure dominance in the world market. Communication would have been difficult in the formative years as the only mode of communication would either be through mail or fax, both of which wouldn’t be able to provide timely correspondence. An internet connection can enable a business establishment to communicate with its employees in their satellite offices based overseas, communicating the reception of their goods in that market and any impediments that they may be facing. However, a negative effect of this scenario is that the physical presence misses out in the employee’s work experience. Direct contact between the employer and the employee is vital in ensuring that they are guided appropriately to ensure that they have full grasp of what is expected of them at the workplace and learn useful tips for prospering in the trade.
In conclusion, technological advancements are redefining the communication landscape in the workplace. The perks that come with having an elaborate communication system at the workplace ensure that there is sufficient coordination in all activities undertaken. It is also easier to coordinate a large group of employees with technological advancements that are geared towards fostering communication between its employees. With clear communication channels that can be developed through storing the necessary information through cloud computing, employees become well aware of the chain of command and hierarchy. It is easy for them to now relay important information to the relevant party that would ensure that an issue brought to light is dealt with swiftly to avoid having any form of stalemate that might stall activities. Video conferencing can be used to great effect on ensuring that no member of the workforce misses out vital company developments whether they are 5 minutes away or 5 time zones away. It is therefore vital for organizations and firms to invest heavily in their communications capabilities as improvement in technology in this facet will guarantee higher productivity. Computers and Information Technology (I.T) systems can be put to good use in ensuring that they oversee certain technical or operational priorities that would create free time for other employees who were hitherto responsible for such undertakings. At the same time it is important to also acknowledge that there are numerous negative effects that may crop up as it is they that will deal the noble intentions of technology a low when the negative effects start outweighing the positive ones.
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