• July 12, 2023
  • Catagory productivity

Employees want to work from anywhere, but need the right remote tools

By : Sanjeev Spolia

The right tool for the right job matters in a hybrid workplace – not only do those returning to the office expect to have the right applications to be productive, but they want the right remote tools when working from home.

In fact, a new study by Atlassian found that employees want remote work tools rather than in-office mandates, and half those who employees who work remotely rather than the office say they don’t have the remote tools they need. The study also found that in-office mandates are unpopular with employees.

These finding are based on survey responses from 1,000 knowledge workers in the United States and Australia. More than two thirds work remotely at least once per week, but only just over half of those remote workers said their employer provides them with remote tools for collaboration. Of those who are provided with remote tools, 26 per cent said those tools aren’t necessarily right for their job or they can’t be effective with those collaboration applications because they don’t have sufficient training.

The Atlassian report noted that the lack of productivity reported by employers is not the fault of remote work – as employers claim – but that they aren’t providing the right remote tools to make offsite, distributed employees as productive as they can be.

Atlassian also noted that the companies that have issued back-to-office mandates have generally not provided hard data that demonstrates employee productivity has declined, and that there is research to show that workers feel more productive when working from home.

But there is conflict between companies and their employees over in-office mandates along with fears of operation silos and a feeling from employees that they are not being supported. This conflict isn’t going to be resolved by forcing people to go back to the office, given that in-office mandates aren’t popular, according to Atlassian. Its survey found that 92 per cent of respondents said they have some form of “in-office mandate,” while 46 per cent are going into the office because their company mandates it, not because they want to.

The survey also found that even in those companies where employees are given a choice, a quarter of respondents feel pressure to go into the office, while 10 per cent worry that they will be perceived as less productive or not adequately committed to their work if they opt to work remotely.

Meanwhile, S&P Global’s 2022 Voice of the Enterprise: Workforce Productivity and Collaboration survey echoes the Atlassian findings and that most employees would prefer to work at home some of the time and that productivity hinges on having the right remote tools.

The consensus appears to be that there’s no going back to the pre-pandemic days of everyone being in the office five days a week. Now matter where employees work, they need the right tools, and ultimately the focus should be on productivity, not hours spent in the office.

A managed service provider is ideally equipped to help you optimize your distributed workforce so you can deploy the right remote tools while maintaining a strong security posture.