My 85-year-old father shocked me recently with a story about his latest Zoom experience – a yoga class. And after years of family cajoling, he then went on to tell me about his latest purchase – a smartphone. All this from a man who pre-pandemic baulked at the thought of more ‘widgets and what’s-its’.
Even for someone who has spent most of his career in technology, these changes really hit home and made me realise just how much deeper technology has become in everyone’s day-to-day. The almost silent swiftness of this transition is incredible, especially with the backdrop of the pandemic.
Our appetite and necessity for digital contact, connections and convenience has moved faster and further than many of us could have predicted. Just think of how many times today you’ve touched or talked to a device or app.
These days it’s hard to imagine any business which doesn’t have technology at its very core. We all expect high quality customer service at our fingertips in everything from healthcare, to groceries and entertainment – and investment in technology and, crucially, those developing it makes this all possible.
But this attention and investment shouldn’t be limited to those with ‘digital’ or ‘technology’ in their job title. At Bupa, I believe it is important a wide range of our people are given the time and space to develop their skills, while also benefitting from the expertise of in-house experts. Because a digitally empowered and technologically savvy workforce is better equipped to meet the needs of our customers now and well into the future.
At Bupa, we are moving forward by creating a learning culture and it is encouraging to see the way our people are stepping up and owning their role in the digital transformation process. Most recently we have seen hundreds of our people join internal Tech Talks, wanting to upskill on a range of subjects from AI to cloud.
We know there is a hunger among many of our people to learn more, which is why we are rolling out our Digital Skills Academy. It will provide our tech teams with the expertise needed to deliver our strategy while also giving employees across Bupa the opportunity to advance their learning.
We see it as a digital bootcamp – a way for our people to build or strengthen their skills and continuously exercise their digital muscles by learning about new tools, trends and ways of working.
It’s safe to say, like many companies founded before the advent of the internet and cloud technologies, we are challenged by legacy systems. Embracing a digital, agile mindset across our business is helping us to start leaping these hurdles, which can only be beneficial for our customers.
And being digitally and technologically sharper means in all parts of the business we are learning more about our customers than ever before so we can only get better at delivering the high-quality services and care they expect from Bupa.
Technology is now firmly nestled in all our lives, making us wonder what we ever did without it. So whether you’re a patient logging in for their first virtual GP consult or practising your mountain pose on screen like my Dad, we all have a role to play in digital transformation.