Tackling tool sprawl with an Employee SuperApp

Tackling tool sprawl with an Employee SuperApp

Over the past decade or so, there has been a shift in the business application space towards startups building and deploying point solutions that solve very specific problems.

As a result, many companies are forced to either invest in a wide variety of tools or risk letting their employee tech stack become outdated. For many companies, the only real option has been to equip their teams with a ton of different tools, forcing employees to navigate a confusing array of interfaces and solutions.

This has a number of downsides, including wasted time, duplicated efforts, and the inability to find and refer back to previous files and conversations.

As the market has undergone rapid change, the equation for vendors has changed a bit, and we are seeing a rise in SuperApps, both in the consumer and enterprise spaces.

Before we dive into employee-facing tools, let’s first go over the term ‘SuperApp.’

What Is A SuperApp?

A SuperApp is an application located on a mobile device where users can go to access many different micro-apps, tools, and services within one platform. SuperApps can consolidate and replace multiple apps within a single tool for the user. 

The general advantages of a SuperApp consist of:

– Improved convenience – As more services & tools become digitized, co-locating new functionalities into a single app is becoming much easier.

– Instant usability – Users are able to seamlessly connect to services and tools whenever a need arises without having to juggle a dozen different apps.

– Enhanced experience – By keeping services and tools personalized, users are able to receive an engaging and productive experience.

As the need to reduce friction across a user’s digital experience continues to grow, we are seeing the average consumer incorporate SuperApps into their daily lives. A prime example of this is the ride-sharing app Uber. 

Uber offers its users a central app where they can go to access not only ride-sharing, but also food and package delivery services. It solves multiple present needs and is advantageous to users as they can access the different services without leaving the app.

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Another prime example is the Chinese app WeChat, a messaging platform within which users can order groceries, hail rides, send and receive payments, and even book doctor’s appointments. The ability to do all of these things within the context of messaging has made it a borderline necessary part of life for people in China.

The Employee SuperApp

There are many tools and applications that employees need to access on a daily basis to effectively do their jobs. An employee has multiple needs, and those needs will likely translate into having to switch back and forth across employee applications.

Switching across separate employee apps to solve unique business needs is an inefficient process and poses a massive problem.

 

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With multiple employee apps, your organization is opening itself up to a litany of potential risks, including:

– Siloed Systems – When work is done across separate tools it raises the risk of information being siloed and not made available to everyone who should be privy to it.

– Information Overload – Too many tools and apps can become a burden on employees as they are forced to learn the ins and outs of many complex tools and apps.

– Loss of Productivity – Diminished productivity is inevitable when employees are spending a large chunk of their day bouncing across applications and disrupting their natural flow of work.

– Increased Demand on IT – Multiple employee apps means multiple systems and tools your IT has to manage and navigate. This alone can become a full-time job and pulls your IT department away from working on more impactful projects.

An Employee SuperApp is like a workplace-focused equivalent to WeChat, focused primarily on unifying the tools and resources an employee uses in their daily work life. 

Think of it as a Swiss army knife for your employee’s digital workplace needs. It includes all of the services and tools your employees need on a daily basis, all rolled into one platform that is equally accessible from mobile or desktop.

The goal of an Employee SuperApp is to present your organization with a tool that can be molded and customized to accomplish exactly what your company needs, hence the ‘Swiss army knife’ analogy.

Frontline & Desk Worker Benefits

For companies that have a mix of frontline and desk workers, this solves two problems at once.

For desk workers, it creates a single notification stream for everything, a single search bar when they need to find prior work, and a centralized dashboard where they can start their day.

It not only cuts down on time spent switching between environments, but also opens up avenues of communication between far-flung colleagues that may not have existed before, and removes siloes between teams, locations, and departments.

For frontline workers, it brings tools and conversations to mobile that used to largely be available to only desk teams. It enables employees who once felt left out to participate in high-level conversations, and it makes it easy to find reference materials, make requests, and track tasks.

When training programs, your schedule, messages from leadership, policy information, and employee recognition are all in a single mobile app, frontline participation in all of these things skyrockets.

By giving 100% of your workforce, not just desk-based employees, an all-in-one employee app where they can communicate and collaborate with their peers, you’re able to improve employee retention & build a strong company culture.

To learn more about this rising trend and how it might affect your organization, view our presentation hosted by our CTO Vishwa Malhotra on App consolidation and Employee SuperApps, which includes analyst data and real-world examples.

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