Enterprise hits and misses - T-Mobile apologizes, supply chains buckle, Salesforce flexes and Zoom surprises

Profile picture for user jreed By Jon Reed August 30, 2021
Summary:
This week - will four day workweeks change the future of work? Notable earnings reports from Salesforce, Workday, and Box keep us on our toes. Does the e-commerce pure play have a future? Can T-Mobile get out of its own way? This week's whiffs also contain the opposite: an anti-whiff.

success-failure-road-for-businessman

Lead story - Future of work in flux - hashing the four day workweek and the future of Zoom

MyPOV: The future of work remains hot burner, as employers reckon with remote-work-as-a-lifestyle, and valiantly attempt to plot office futures.

Cath shares lessons from a couple four-day-week adopters in The Future of Work - is four the magic number for the Vaccine Economy's working week?. But the four day workweek is hardly a new concept. Why the traction now?

Cath writes that it's about employee well-being as a rising workplace value. And: with remote work ingrained, employers are more likely to give the four-day-week a whirl. But, as she points out, this approach will falter without outcome-focused KPIs. Otherwise we'll turn this into a Mechanical Turk-style volume work grinder. Even with an extra day off, that's a bad end game.

Industry expectations matter: if the rest of your supply chain works in five day rhythms, that can get tricky - though off days could be staggered. Management culture is the real impediment though. Cath quotes Awin's Kelly Perry:

I don’t think this approach would be very successful if there was a micro-management culture and the senior management team was the sole decision-maker. It’s about giving people the power to make their own decisions and pave their own way to success.

Speaking of ingrained, Zoom has pulled that off, but not in a perfect way for the company's future. Kurt makes a case for Zoom as a specialized collaboration platform in Don't write off Zoom - it’s not a one-trick pony as remote work is here to stay!:

In contrast, Zoom’s intention to acquire Five9 indicates that it sees little point in attacking a fortified hill where Microsoft, Google and Salesforce (Slack) dominate the market for productivity and collaboration services. Instead, Zoom finds more opportunities in vertically expanding into omnichannel customer support for organizations still struggling to serve users and employees in an online-first world.

Yes, Zoom Apps is a good way to push from video meetups to Zoom-as-work-platform, but I'm also wary of Zoom's long-term ability to take on the dominant players above. But: Zoom took me by surprise with the Five9 purchase, video training moves, and determination to specialize for industry.

Combine that with Zoom's obviously superior UX abilities - something (Skypey) Microsoft and (Buzzy) Google can't get out of their own way with, and Zoom's future looks pretty interesting. If office work as we knew it isn't coming back, Zoom is as good a bet as any. Update: however, if the management allure of the office does return, as I worry it will, then Zoom will find itself in a tougher situation, with video collaboration not being nearly enough - especially with such big fish in its pond. We'll pick that story up in this week's edition.

Diginomica picks - my top stories on diginomica this week

Vendor analysis, diginomica style. Here's my three top choices from our vendor coverage:

A few more vendor picks, without the quotables:

Jon's grab bag - Derek isn't too impressed with NHS these days: When will the NHS learn from its mistakes on data sharing?  Stuart confirms his turn-of-phrase dexterity with the all time classic "cookie-monstering" - Cookie monstering as a cover for data regime change - the UK picks a dangerous fight over GDPR. Stuart isnt' bullish on this one:

I have a very bad feeling about all this. Yes, I get irritated at the number of pop-ups etc, but very few of these are really due to GDPR. At diginomica, we’ve done our absolute best to ensure that we are compliant without being intrusive and I’d hazard a claim that yes, it can be done.

True that. Gosh knows we aren't perfect around these parts, but anyone who equates GDPR compliance with mind-numbing pop-ups hasn't taken a trip to Forbes.com or ZDNet lately. They treat pop-ups as an Olympic competition in annoyance, not compliance.

Best of the enterprise web

Waiter suggesting a bottle of wine to a customer

My top seven

Overworked businessman

Whiffs

So I was poking fun at Google's UX ineptitude earlier, calling them "Buzzy." That was partially inspired by this detailed takedown: A decade and a half of instability: The history of Google messaging apps. Did Google actually get worse at UX? If Google Talk was the high point, then...

It's all downhill from here, with Microsoft getting in on the breachy action. Fortunately it seems few were impacted:

I'm not gonna lie - this one hurt a little bit:

Finally, this one isn't a whiff, more like an anti-whiff, from the get-busy-livin' file:

See you next time...

If you find an #ensw piece that qualifies for hits and misses - in a good or bad way - let me know in the comments as Clive (almost) always does. Most Enterprise hits and misses articles are selected from my curated @jonerpnewsfeed.