Survey: Office workers have spent $2.3bn to work remotely
A survey commissioned by Lenovo and conducted by YouGov in August 2020 has found that 85% of Australian office workers are worried when it comes to working remotely, with 42% citing technology challenges as a source of anxiety.
The survey also revealed that Australian office workers have spent $2.3 billion in the last three months, to ensure they have all the technology they need to work remotely.
Additionally, 80% of office workers said they experience technology challenges when working remotely, with the two most common issues being internet connection (49%) and contacting the IT help desk when there is an issue (39%).
Matt Codrington, Managing Director at Lenovo ANZ, said this year has seen rapid acceleration to digitisation for all businesses and the rise of flexible working for all, with employers moving quickly to support their teams and maintain business continuity.
“While our research shows that office workers have largely relished the opportunity to work from home, their common concerns show businesses need to ensure their staff can access the right technology and support to truly maximise the benefits of flexible working,” Codrington said.
According to the survey, 40% of Australian office workers conceded they have spent their personal dollars on buying technology hardware and software, with 26% saying they have spent $1000 or more.
In the current climate of security concerns, it may not be in businesses’ interests to leave office employees on their own, as 65% (the equivalent of 3.3 million people) admit that they have used their personal devices for work purposes because it was more convenient or their work device was not up to par. Additionally, 29% of respondents said they do it “all the time”.
Employees who have experienced tech issues when working remotely are twice as likely, compared to those who have not, to feel like they are on their own if IT issues arise. The survey revealed that 61% of respondents say they have become their own IT help desk while working remotely, while 29% feel poorly equipped or only able to handle the basics when it comes to troubleshooting and addressing IT issues.
While 70% of respondents prefer the IT help desk for support, 44% of office workers admit they are turning to Google and internet pages/forums for advice. Additionally, 37% of office workers in the financial and healthcare (36%) industries report feeling poorly equipped or only equipped to handle the basics. Australian office workers also want flexible working to go hand in hand with technology support. There is a need for employers to ensure their staff feel well supported and can rely on the assistance they need.
A majority (83%) of Australian office workers are looking to their employers for more support, especially for flexibility in working arrangements (56%) and remote IT assistance and support (41%). Additionally, 47% of office workers said training on new technologies or how to use these effectively could help with their jobs going forward.
Millennial workers were far more likely to report having technology challenges (86%) than Generation X (77%) and Baby Boomers (63%), and more likely to want more support from their employers (91%, compared to 81% and 65%). 68% of Australian office workers said their companies need to adopt more or newer forms of technology to stay competitive.
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