Storm Technology, the business technology consultancy, has announced the findings of a new survey which reveals that 41% of IT leaders think their company will become 100% remote in the future.
The survey – conducted by Tech Central and involving more than 100 IT decision-makers from larger enterprises and businesses across Ireland – found that over two thirds (67%) think their organisation is currently equipped to support such a move.
Some 81% of respondents think the way their company is currently working is effective and the same proportion think their IT department is adequately supporting remote/hybrid working for their organisation.
However, 65% don’t think their company is using remote/hybrid working solutions to their full potential and over half (58%) don’t think virtual communications are an adequate replacement for human interaction.
In terms of other challenges stemming from remote/hybrid working, IT leaders see supporting company culture as the biggest, cited by 42%. Other leading challenges include providing secure access to company systems and information (39%), training staff to use existing technologies to the fullest (39%), enabling collaboration across locations (35%), and managing remote devices (31%).
As for the long-term issues arising from this way of working, 46% said spending too much time in meetings. Meanwhile, 39% cited working longer hours and some 32% said having to spend time on wellness to prevent burnout. Thirty per cent of IT leaders also see not staying ahead with the latest tools to do the job as a long-term problem of remote/hybrid working.
While the research found that its impact was largely positive across the areas of staff wellbeing (80%), employee experience (77%) and business growth (69%), this was less so when it came to talent and culture. Just over half (54%) felt the impact of remote/hybrid working was positive on attracting and retaining talent, while only 35% believed it has had a positive impact on company culture.
Arguably, this may stem from challenges relating to collaboration across locations. The leading barriers to collaboration were revealed as a lack of digital skills (48%), people having the time to collaborate (45%), and a lack of face-to-face meetings (44%).
Furthermore, a quarter (25%) of IT leaders cited securing communication platforms as an obstacle to collaboration and almost a fifth (17%) identified the impaired ability to share information as a barrier to same.
Speaking about the findings, Mike Lillis, Chief Commercial Officer at Storm Technology, said: “Of course the workplace of today is vastly different to what we had five years ago, and our research suggests that it will continue to evolve – perhaps even becoming fully remote for some organisations.
“Yet, the core of what makes a successful organisation is the same – enabled, engaged and empowered people. If companies are to make remote and hybrid working a success, they need both the technology and the strategy in place. If people lack the means and knowledge to collaborate, they cannot work effectively.
“In turn, this jeopardises not just service delivery and business but also company culture and employee wellbeing as people end up working harder and longer. Business leaders must therefore implement the technologies and provide the training required to create a productive, proactive, and positive workplace. Only then can they make a real impact for their people and their organisations as a whole.”
To find out more about this research, check out Storm Technology’s Modern Workplace Report 2023.
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