University of Wales
Module Code : EMPL4011
Smart Technology In The Workplace
Demonstrate the ability to evaluate the appropriate use of technology (including mobile devices) to improve workplace efficiency and employability by the following means:
- Choose any two of the following options to investigate and examine their usefulness in the workplace, making use of appropriate criteria which enables you to provide an evaluation.
- You should submit your findings in a written assignment containing relevant and appropriate links and images which illustrate your research.
- You should be mindful of the need to provide appropriate references to underpin your research.
1. Web based Email
Pick at least two different email providers to compare and contrast features in addition to discussing the option in general.
2.Smartphones and Tablets
Pick at least one smartphone and one tablet to compare and contrast features in addition to discussing the option in general
3. Web Conferencing
Pick at least two different web conferencing providers to compare and contrast features in addition to discussing the option in general
4.Cloud File Storage
Pick at least two different storage providers to compare and contrast features in addition to discussing the option in general
5.Office applications online
Pick at least two different office applications providers to compare and contrast features in addition to discussing the option in general
Demonstrate appropriate use of technology and its applications in the workplace by the following means:
A. Create your own professional accounts (to be used for work only) in the following social networks.
Provide evidence of the on-going use of these accounts by means of screenshots and web links to the accounts in your assignment document.
B. Evaluate the possibilities for communication and collaboration in the workplace that use of these social networks might provide - giving examples to illustrate your research. Your evaluation should also discuss any measures that you deem to be appropriate in safeguarding personal and professional security and safety online.
Organise your knowledge and learning through the use of a range of information resources and present your work at the appropriate level.
You should submit your assignment as a Word (or equivalent) document containing:
- Your investigations for Part 1
- Images - screenshots of the new social media accounts created in Part 2
- Web Links – links to the new social media accounts
- Any other images/web links/files of your choice as deemed relevant to your text.
(These extra files may be added as appendices to the main document if desired).
Requirement of incorporating smart technology in workplaces has been discussed in this evaluation. To maintain the effective workplace culture adaptation of better communication technology is one of the major requirements. This study focuses on the usage of better and secure web based mail services and modern technical devices for betterment of any workplace. By compare and contrast the study attempts to provide safe and secure use of device and social media based communication platform for the workplace.
Technological advancement does not necessarily mean only advancement of computer electronics; it has a greater impact on the workplace. Use of smart technology in the workplace helps in saving both money and energy. In this evaluation appropriate use of technology and necessity of developed mobile devices in any workplace have been discussed in a detailed manner. Application of smart technology in the workplace and its effects on the workplace have been analyzed in this project. Several communication systems for example different types of email services and social networking are explored in this evaluation.
Smart technology in workplace
Application of smart information and communication technology in the workplaces has changed the workplace scenario in last few decades. Intelligent automation and the next wave of technological development have dramatically changed the digital workplace. Increased use of smart technology has triggered dramatic changes in the functioning process of any organization. The organizations that use smart technology in their workplace have seen significant economic progress of their enterprise. The noticeable shift in the workplace from analog to digital have reported a 30% cost reduction in occupancy costs. Emerging technologies which are important for latest technological advances are use of web based mail services in the workplace, smart virtual assistant apps and digital communication system.
Digital communication system
Digital communication system offers a complete package of communication tools to run a digital workplace successfully. Digital communication system includes use of web based emails and smart devices like smart phones and tablets (Norouzizadeh Dezfouli et al, 2016). Different web based emails have their own pros and cons. In the same manner smart devices functioning with different types of operating systems have their own features and drawbacks.
1.1. Web based email
Since the late 1990s Email services have had great impact on the workplace. Effects of email communication have both positive and negative outcomes. It has enabled different companies to have more diverse work teams. Virtual-team software is often used to share files and conducting meetings among the team members (Guerin, 2017). The cons of different web based mails that sending an email eliminates the possibility of immediate feedback. Despite of these drawbacks email serves an effective purpose of sending one way messages or engage in two way interaction. But it can not meet the time urgency.
In any organization Gmail is the widely used email service across the world. But other web based mailing services like hotmail, outlook and yahoo mail also exist. Webmail client is a particular web app. Outlook.com is Microsoft’s prevailing webmail offering which is loaded in the company’s web browser, Internet explorer. Outlook.com is the upgraded version of Microsoft’s previous webmail service Hotmail.com (Guerin, 2017).
Hotmail vs outlook
Different mail services have their own trademark features and they also come with their own setbacks. Hotmail and its upgraded version outlook are growing popularity in workplace operations. Though most of the business organizations prefer using Gmail because of its more official approach, in order to enjoy some additional and fresh features now a days Hotmail and Outlook powered by Microsoft are gaining popularity (Lambert, 2016). Both of the email services have their own features though they do share certain common primary features because outlook originated from hotmail.
Hotmail and outlook can be compared in four different areas. Both services can be compared on basis of
| Hotmail|| Outlook|
|Hotmail email accounts ends with @hotmail.com though they are powered by outlook.com.||In the upgraded version the email address has @outlook.com in the end.|
|Hotmail is a more cluttered version and not very aesthetically pleasing.||Outlook 2016 has a cleaner look. The appearance is new and does not have too many tabs and areas overwhelmed with text.|
Table1: difference between Hotmail and Outlook
(Source: created by researcher)
| Hotmail|| outlook|
|Hotmail used to have a initial storage capacity of 5GB but it gradually increases according to one’s need.||Outlook sets up with 1 TB storage capacity from the start.|
|With hotmail the size of the sent email attachment could not exceed a certain size.||With outlook one can send attachment maximum of 100 MB.|
Table2: difference between Hotmail and Outlook regarding storage
Source: created by researcher
As Hotmail and Outlook have merged into one entity and both of them share the same origin, the security features are similar. But outlook 2016 is a more secure version because it has features like multi-factor authentication process, advanced file and email encryption mode. Special admin capabilities and Visio document rights management to detect sensitive information help outlook to be the most secure version till date. (Lambert, 2016)
With outlook one can create self protecting documents. Links can be sent instead of file attachments which makes the information transaction more secure.
Outlook provides various options which help in keeping the inbox more organized than the inbox of any Hotmail account (Lambert, 2016). In outlook account emails are sorted into different folders which are easily accessible and can be manipulated. It has features that provide one to access and drag emails and drop them. Between folders it helps to keep a track of those emails.
There many categories that can be assigned to messages. With Quick View on the sidebar the category view can be accessed. This process makes the scanning of the folders easier.
1.2.Smartphones and Tablets
Among smart devices iPad mini and Asus tab are the popular devices used in several workplaces. These two devices have different operating systems and they function differently from each other(Ahmad et al, 2013).
Apple iPad mini Wi-Fi was launched in 2012 and Asus launched their dual sim tablets in 2014. The comparison of the two based on different features and technical built up has been provided with a help of a table below.
| General|| Asus tablet|| iPad mini|
|Battery capacity (mAh)||3910|| -|
|Screen size (inches)||7.00||7.90|
|resolution||1280x800 pixels||768x1024 pixels|
|processor||1.2 GHz dual core||1 GHz|
|RAM||1 GB||512 MB|
|Internal storage ||8 GB||16 GB|
|Operating System||Android 4.3||iOS 6|
Table 3: comparison between iPad and Asus tablet
Source: created by researcher
2. Comparison of the features of the two devices
iPad includes the App Store that has more than a million apps. This system also includes accessories like wireless keyboards and external speakers.
iPad is also more stable than the android tablets though the built structure of Asus is quite concrete. Asus operated through the android OS is more user friendly than iPad.
B. Communication and collaboration in the workplace
Facebook has developed an android app called workplace that helps developing any small scale or large scale business organization. Workers of the companies that use this workplace app can use this app to keep track of all the meetings and group discussions. Workplace help in connecting with everyone of a company and helps to turn ideas of the employees into action. Workplace app also includes personalized news feed, voice and video calling which make the official conferences easier than before(Guerin, 2017). This app helps in completing group works together. Different teams and project groups of different branches, departments and campaign can communicate easily with each other. This app ensures safe and secure sharing of data and attachments(Vazquez, 2016). Features like independent audited security make it safe for organizational purpose of any company. Workplace is a ad free app separate from personal face book account.
Different social networking websites like LinkedIn, facebook workplace and twitter have proved to be helpful in establishing business communication.
LinkedIn provides an opportunity to create a profile related to one’s profession that is different from his or her personal facebook account.
Social media can be used to promote the workplace and for advertisement purposes of a particular company. Senior officials and other employees can make official communication through their official profile which is separate from their personal social media account(Lee et al, 2016). This can be used to be an official platform for official communication, promotion of companies, marketing and advertisement of the companies.
Incorporating advanced technology to ensure better communication in any company helps in developing a better workplace for the employees. W3ith proper devices and web communication the employees get more connected to each other and to their workplace as well. Web based email services and advanced devices like iPad and tablets make the work easier and also reduces labour cost and manpower of any organization. With proper communicating system and secured mode of transfer board meetings and communication between different branches of any company becomes easier.
Use of appropriate technology in workplace makes the communication easier. With better technological support few risks are also associated with the usage of social media platform and web based mail services. Loss of data, possibility of wrong information and data manipulation are few of them. These factors can be avoided with the use of secure and encrypted mode of applications. From the evaluation it is evident that it is safer to use web services with better security features.