Ricoh Europe, London, 29 June 2021 – Research released today by Ricoh Europe has found technology frustrations are sapping morale and engagement at mid-size businesses. More than a third (36%) of employees struggle to feel engaged while working from home due to communication and technology issues – an increase of 16% from August 2020.
Ricoh Europe’s poll of 573 European office workers at firms with 251 – 1000 people reveals that incoherent investment in technology is driving the motivation drain, as employees struggle to make time to perform personally rewarding or high value tasks. This highlights the risk of top talent jumping ship to employers who they feel have more beneficial and fitting digitised ways of working.
Almost two thirds (65%) think their company has digitised processes to copy customers or partners, rather than assessing a particular need. Drilling down into the relevance of their employers’ digital processes, two in five (39%) survey respondents say they don’t have real-time insight to properly engage with customers. Meanwhile, just a quarter (26%) say their employer has invested in eCommerce or digital tools to improve customer experience.
Yet for all the new technologies rolled out, employee workload has not reduced. In fact, 42% find that technology platforms introduced during the pandemic are increasing their workload, rather than reducing it. At the same time, 34% feel pressured to spend longer online, an increase of 13% from last year.
The shift to remote and new ways of working has also unearthed concerns about security breaches – 45% of employees admit they are anxious about inadvertently sharing files with the wrong recipient over new digital channels. At the same time, a similar proportion (47%) believe their bosses use technology to monitor them while they are working from home.
David Mills, CEO, Ricoh Europe, says: “It’s surprising that after more than a year of remote working, and with light at the end of the long pandemic tunnel, employee motivation continues to decline because of technology and communication challenges. Though it’s not through a lack of trying. The biggest mistake is investing in technology for technology’s sake, or because you’ve seen a partner or competitor do it. The first and most important step with any technology investment is identifying what your business actually needs. When doing this, it is vital to consider the perspective of your workforce and your customers. Only with this insight, can you find the technology solutions that deliver maximum impact.”
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