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What in the World is Work OS?

When you look at Usain Bolt, you see a winner—few people can say they won eight Olympic gold medals before the age of 40.

But, behind each achievement, Bolt would surely give due credit to a disciplined training routine and his teams that worked together to ensure that his diet, training efforts, and promotional schedules were in sync. The same can be said for a business.

The most forward-thinking and productive organizations are therefore turning to something called a Work OS to ensure their success. 

In this article, we’ll cover the basics of Work OS and probably leave you asking, “Why don’t I have this already?”

What is a Work OS?

Deemed “the platform of the future,” a Work OS (Work Operating System) is an emerging software category. This digital cloud-based workspace enables teams to plan, execute, and manage all processes, from day-to-day task management to organization-wide projects.

The best Work OS systems are geared for organizations of all sizes and across all functions, so they can be a vehicle for building any workflow, project or process, OR be adapted to meet the needs of existing ones. 

Closing the gap with Work OS

How did we get here, to this new reality of Work OS? 

For one, today’s work environment has shifted dramatically. Regardless of team size, industry, or presence of distributed/remote or onsite members, employees must work rapidly while providing excellent customer experiences. If one of these factors is lacking, they risk a loss of time, resources, and opportunities.

Digital transformation is certainly not new to the business world; integrating digital technology is an excellent way to combat silos and improve communication and productivity. 

However, the breakdown comes from different departments, teams and functions adopting different and specialized technologies, i.e. a campaign management tool for a marketing team while an enterprise team uses a CRM tool. 

Because these tools are not connected to each other, silos actually increase and leadership has a more difficult time getting the big picture and in turn, doesn’t feel confident to make data-driven decisions.

A Work OS is the solution for this chasm of complexity and agility. 

Why do businesses and teams need a Work OS?

As an ultimate unifier, a Work OS is one place where teams both plan and deliver their work. Designed for the fast-moving, collaborative, and ever-changing environment of businesses, it’s also a place where management can actively monitor alignment on work and standard compliance. It doesn’t replace other systems, but rather envelops them through integration.

Notably, it is a tool that champions transparency across teams and leadership. This is usually seen in a variety of features, such as the ability to assign multiple task owners or to provide organization-wide access to workflow data and content. In this way, an entire company can see what is being worked on, both within and across teams.

What are the benefits of a Work OS?

We’ve already covered some of the biggest strengths of a Work OS, like flexibility, reduction of silos and creating visibility across an organization. But how does it affect teams? A Work OS is ideal if you want to:

  • Contextualize communication: Rather than rely and refer constantly to Slack or email threads, a Work OS allows teams to communicate directly in the context of work, whether it’s the color of a design or submitting questions for a company all-hands meeting.
  • Move faster: Anyone on a team can think of a time where manual tasks have delayed their work, such as emailing a team member a file and then checking to see if they received it. A Work OS supports quick adaptation by providing automations for grunt work and notifications and the flexibility for teams to work the way that works well for them.
  • Centralize data: A Work OS consolidates data from multiple tools in one space. This way, everyone who has permissions can easily access it and use it to inform their decisions.

When looking at different Work OS offerings, you’ll find they all vary in flexibility and ease of use. You should consider several factors before implementing one, such as integrations, ease of adoption, and its impact on time spent. 

To get started, check out this compilation of some of the best Work OS tools.

Work OS: the next step of revolutionizing business

When you look at a winning company, it’s not always obvious what went into it, beyond a great idea or sharp marketing copy. In reality, the success of a business goes hand in hand with the systems and tools in place that support it. 

If your teams are seeking more intuitive and visual ways to reach their goals, they should run, not walk towards Work OS.

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Soumi Biswas, with vast years in content writing, specializes in technical topics from eCommerce platforms to digital marketing. Known for engaging content, she’s also passionate about cooking and traveling.

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