About LAS

LAS is an award-winning provider of elearning consultancy, design, development and training services in the UK and internationally. 

Established in 2005 as LearningAge Solutions, we work with some of the best known organisations in the world to boost their performance through the innovative use of learning technologies. Working in partnership with our customers, we draw on proven principles from human behaviour, how people learn and how the brain works to create impactful digital learning solutions with real return on investment.

About Tess Robinson

Photo of Tess Robinson

Tess is a director of LAS. She has worked in a learning environment for over fifteen years. First, as a senior manager in universities, moving into digital learning seven years ago.

How digital has transformed my night out

By Tess Robinson
Posted 22 June 2018

When I was a teenager, arranging a night out involved sitting on the stairs, with the phone line stretched around the bannister, ringing around my friends and arranging where to meet up. I’d then have to rely on them, even the flaky ones, to turn up when and where they were meant to. If it was somewhere new that we were going, I’d have to check where it was on a paper A-Z map. I paid for my drinks with cash and could be as silly as I liked because the only record of the evening would be in our memories.

Fast forward to today. Technology has completely transformed my night out and all I need is a smartphone. It now seems utterly unimaginable that we could organise get-togethers without it.  I can Whatsapp, SMS or Messenger my friends to arrange things. I can set up a Facebook event to see who’s coming. I can google the bar or restaurant of choice to check location and menu in advance and look on TripAdvisor to see if it’s any good. I can check when my (flakey) friends will arrive with location apps and get a round in by tapping a bit of plastic against a machine or even using my watch. During the evening we can record what fun we had by taking photos, videos, selfies and sharing them with people who aren’t with us on social media. When the night is over I can order an Uber from my phone without having to speak to anyone and maybe arrange a Deliveroo order for when I get home and have the munchies. All this would have been unthinkable when I was a teenager.

Technology has completely transformed our social lives. It’s influence is all-pervasive and it’s happened relatively quickly. Now that the technology cat is out of the bag, this transformation will only accelerate faster and it’s happening in all areas of our lives. Work is perhaps one of the last areas to catch up, but one where digital transformation can potentially make the biggest impact, as it’s basically essential to survival.

Why do it? There are lots of reasons. Here are just 5:

1. Your customers expect it
2. Your employees expect it
3. New competitors using digital solutions are disrupting many industries, not embracing digital transformation could be fatal
4.It will improve processes and make the organisation more efficient, reducing operational costs and improving productivity
5. It breaks down silos and fosters collaboration and innovation, enabling your organisation to be more agile and responsive to a rapidly changing business environment.

What’s stopping you? Digital transformation is not just about implementing new technologies. Getting it right is, in many ways, much more about people. In many cases it requires quite a culture shift and that means training, upskilling and reskilling. A certain amount of flexibility is necessary which, particularly large organisations, often struggle with. Legacy systems can also weigh the organisation down and act as blockers to transformation. None of this, however, is insurmountable and taking steps towards digital transformation is a must if you want your business to survive.

Was it really that hard to organise a night out 25 (ahem) years ago? I didn’t think so at the time. I thought it was perfectly OK to spend hours arranging it and wandering around trying to find my friends. If you don’t know things can be different, you can be easily satisfied with the way things are. The world has moved on though. My night out is now irrevocably digitally transformed, I must say, for the better. I can now spend a lot less time on the organising and much more time on enjoying my social life. If I didn’t use technology, I would find myself being left out and left behind. It’s the same for your organisation. Digital transformation is no longer a choice but a necessity.

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