Having experienced new ways of working, a majority of employees (55%) and their bosses, i.e. executives (54%) prefer to maintain these new arrangements, such as working from home, telecommuting or forms of remote/flexible working. 

These were the results of The Work Survey fielded by Wakefield Research on behalf of ServiceNow, which engaged 9,000 executives and employees across multiple industries and regions, including India, Japan, Singapore, Australia, and New Zealand.

Globally, the sentiment to stick to remote working was highest among employees in:

  • France (69%) - where less than half of execs (45%) expressed the same thoughts - thus the largest discrepancy between employees and execs globally
  • India (64%) - compared to just over half of bosses (52%) agreeing to this idea
  • Ireland (62%) - compared to just 48% of execs, although the study points out the small base size of this particular data point

On the flipside, there are countries where execs are more in favour of remote working, compared to the employees:

  • Netherlands - 56% of execs vs 46% of employees are keen to maintain new ways or working (albeit the base size for execs' views is small)
  • Australia - 59% of execs vs 56% of employees are happy with the effectiveness of remote work, thus in favour of it
  • New Zealand - 60% of execs vs 58% of employees are ready to embrace new ways of working (albeit the base size for execs' views is small)

However, remote working does not come as an easy or natural transition for companies relying on outdates technology.

Half of all 900 C-level executives (50%) and 8,100 employees (53%) globally believe that transitioning to new ways of working will be more challenging than the initial adjustment to remote work.

This is because nearly all (91%) executives say their companies have offline workflows including:

  • Document approvals (51%)
  • IT security incident reports (45%)
  • Technology support requests or processing (42%)

While progress has been made, more than half of survey respondents - 60% of executives and 59% of employees - say their companies still do not have a fully integrated system to manage digital workflows.

So while new systems were quickly put into place to help with new ways of working, most executives and employees say they would not be able to adapt within 30 days in the event of another disruption. Customer Service, HR, Finance, and Sales and Marketing are particularly vulnerable - IT is the only department with a majority (over 60%) who say they could adapt quickly.

Photo / ServiceNow

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