Why you should invite external partners to be part of your digital workplace

Modern technology has transformed the workplace and how organizations operate. Digital workplace platforms have provided an innovative and more effective way for staff to communicate and collaborate, helping to improve productivity and efficiency throughout the business. Despite the clear benefits for employees, companies have been slow to apply these principles to external partners.

Businessman asking external partners to be part of his company digital workplace

This can compromise the effectiveness of the working relationship between the business and its partners. External contributors may struggle to work well with the company without having access to the digital workplace and this can negatively impact supply chain, external agencies, web support and other parties.

In this article, we’ll be taking a look at why you should consider inviting external partners to be part of your digital workplace and the potential benefits of including partners more in your strategy.

B2B user experience. Start treating your partners like consumers

Involving partners in your digital workplace has many benefits, from better communication to increased productivity. Despite this, many companies are keeping their external partners completely separate from their digital tools, creating silos and making it hard for them to find relevant information. For the organizations that do take the steps to involve partners in their internal digital operations, they can gain a competitive advantage in their market space. Indeed, they’re building a culture of mutual help that results in doing great business together, benefitting both your company and your external parties.

Advances in digital technology mean that people are used to having access to information or being able to find answers quickly and conveniently. If your organization takes the position of willingly inviting partners to become part of your digital workplace, then this can positively transform the way your business interacts with partners and this subsequently brings a greater chance of success.

The benefits of bringing external partners into your digital workplace

Some organizations are understandably concerned about inviting external partners to become part of the business’ digital workplace. What if external partners see something they shouldn’t? Is it the right move to give external contributors access to internal information?

These are natural concerns around extranets, but a digital workplace platform can be designed to alleviate these issues by only giving external partners access to the information they need and their visibility of notifications and announcements can be controlled. With these controls in place, the benefits of inviting external partners into your digital workplace environment can be immense.

Improve collaboration

For a business to succeed, whether it’s operating in the B2B sector, supply chain or manufacturing, it needs to be able to effectively collaborate with its partners. The features and capabilities of a digital workplace platform allow both internal and external teams to collaborate via a shared space on both tasks and projects. Easy access permissions can be used so that each specific user only sees what they need to see, filtering out what they won’t be interested in or shouldn’t see at all. This means that you have complete control over what your external partners see on their feed and the information they have access to.  

Ensuring effective collaboration will help increase productivity both for your team and external partners. This, in turn, will support the business as you build a better relationship with your partners meaning they will be more likely to continue to do business with you.

Involve external partners in company culture 

Allow external partners to become part of your company culture by giving them access to internal communications and giving them the social capabilities to interact with posts and really become part of your organization. If external partners become ingrained in your company culture, then they will gain a much deeper routed understanding of your enterprise and therefore be better placed to work with you.

Provide a personalized experience for partner users

The interface your partners have access to must be personalized and provide for the individual needs of the user. A well-designed user interface remembers a user’s personal preferences and subsequently provides the information best suited to their individual needs and requirements. This makes the experience for the user quicker, more convenient and better.

Delivering a personal experience can be achieved with a digital experience platform (DXP). Unily's Employee Experience Platform (our unique take on the DXP) is powered by the Hendrix Engine, providing a ready-made solution that is easy to implement and can be customized to suit your users’ individual needs to provide a truly personalized user experience for external partners.

Knowledge sharing

Struggling to find information is one of the greatest inefficiencies of the modern-day workplace. Hours of productive time can be lost trying to find the right document or the right person to talk to when trying to complete a task. A digital workplace platform transforms the process of finding information, bringing all documents and contacts together on one platform, streamlining the process to acquire much-needed information.

Providing external partners with access to company documents that are useful for them to do their job can help to improve knowledge sharing with contributors outside your organization. This improves efficiency and reduces the strain on your internal employees having to respond to requests from external partners looking for information. Share knowledge with your partners and help them to do their job better. 

It's time for your partners to become part of your digital workplace

Inviting your external partners to become part of your digital workplace environment can on the face of it seem like a risk. However, the benefits of doing so can have a positive impact on business operations, efficiency and ultimately profits.  A sophisticated digital platform is capable of delivering everything your external partners need to work better with your enterprise. 

Unily's Employee Experience Platform is a highly customizable platform with the capabilities to positively transform the way your organization operates and the experience you’re providing for your partners.

If you would like to find out more about how our digital experience platform can positively transform your relationships with B2B partners, then please contact our team to find out more.

Insights for you

EX Insights to your inbox

The list that everyone wants to get on. Subscribe to receive the latest insights, upcoming events, and inside scoops.