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Channel can ease hybrid working concerns

Avaya has linked the ability to enjoy hybrid working to employee happiness levels, but there is work to do in getting the IT fully in place

Avaya has been monitoring changes in customer attitudes towards the cloud and collaboration over the course of the Covid-19 pandemic.

More firms have taken a journey to the cloud during the coronavirus outbreak as staff were forced to work from home because of restrictions.

Earlier this year, the firm highlighted to partners the benefits of getting involved with software as a service (SaaS). It has followed that up with research underlining the extent to which the changes of the past year will leave a lasting legacy.

Avaya’s Life and work beyond 2020 study took the pulse of thousands of workers across 11 countries. It found that workers in the UK appreciated the work-from-anywhere model, with 44% stating that the ability to conduct hybrid work would contribute to their happiness.

The study also found that more than half (55%) of UK workers felt they had the right technology to support hybrid working. That figure was lower than some other countries, however, including India and the US, which indicated that there was some catching up to do, and hence opportunities for the channel to help solve those problems.

Avaya was also keen to get an insight into what remote workers were concerned about. The response echoed other recent studies, revealing that a third of staff were concerned about going back to their offices and meeting people, while there was also frustration around the lack of investment in IT by some employers.

“Findings from our Life and work beyond 2020 study highlight the need for employers to provide clear guidance on what their future of work might look like, which is understandable and necessary after this turbulent and uncertain year. We all know that a happy employee is a productive one, and technology – where it’s needed to support an employee to do their tasks well – is critical,” said Steve Joyner, managing director for the UK and Ireland at Avaya.

“Today’s home office is a mishmash of various technologies. Employees are trying to do the best they can with the communications tools available to them, but often these aren’t as efficient as what they had in the office,” he added.

Joyner said Avaya would advise a move towards a more composable technology architecture where comms tools could be used to ensure employees had the same experience at home as they would in the office.

Some of Avaya’s findings echoed those from the Supporting your remote workforce in 2021 and beyond report, commissioned by smart locker provider Velocity Smart Technology, which revealed that 37% of workers were concerned they would catch Covid-19 from shared office devices and equipment.

“Before the turn of the decade, remote working was something that so-called ‘cool’ or young businesses provided as a perk to attract rising talent. But one global pandemic later, and things are very different,” said Anthony Lamoureux, CEO of Velocity Smart Technology.

“Practically overnight, the well-established businesses no longer had the luxury of toying with the idea of remote working as something they ‘could’ offer in a far-off future – they either had to adapt to a remote workforce or close shop altogether. Business leaders and IT directors now need to understand exactly what the pandemic has taught us about remote working,” he added.

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