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The channel has a key role to play in enabling customers to establish a successful hybrid working strategy, as large numbers of workers continue to share their frustrations with the way their employers approach the issue.
Research from HP has shone a light on the current attitudes of UK knowledge workers, with 65% viewing their relationship with their job as “unhealthy”, with negative impacts on their health and wellbeing.
Just shy of three-quarters of those that were quizzed indicated they would be prepared to earn less to be happier at work.
The supplier’s first Work relationship index should act as a spur to its channel base because of the headline revelations about high levels of user dissatisfaction.
“This research highlights the opportunity business leaders have to strengthen the world’s relationship with work – in ways that are good for both people and business,” said Neil MacDonald, UK and Ireland channel director at HP.
“It is our role as leaders to demonstrate and encourage workers to find the balance between productivity and happiness,” he added. “The most successful organisations have healthy cultures that enable employees to excel in their careers and thrive outside of work.”
The risks of employers getting the hybrid working balance wrong is significant, with HP’s survey unearthing tales of workers struggling with mental and physical health. There are also impacts on morale and engagement, with increased disengagement at work along with greater feelings of disconnection.
Those employers that fail to offer decent hybrid working conditions also face losing talent, which will leave gaps that could be difficult to fill. HP found that when employees feel neutral about their relationship with work, more than 71% consider leaving the company. When they’re more deeply unhappy, that figure rises to 91%.
HP found that there were a few factors that contributed to fostering a decent relationship between staff and work. Expectations have changed significantly over the past couple of years as hybrid working has become a reality post-pandemic.
Making sure staff felt fulfilled would provide many staff with a sense of purpose and increased connection to the business. Just a quarter of those surveyed by HP feel that way at the moment.
It’s also helpful if business leaders are able to show some flexibility in style and demonstrate emotional intelligence and emphatic leadership.
Finally, only a quarter of those workers quizzed felt they were given respect and a sense of value, and many rued the lack of chances to experience the flexibility promised by hybrid working and the subsequent benefits for work-life balance.
Where the channel can make an impact is in ensuring customers get access to skilled support, and that users feel they can get the chance to get their hands on appropriate technologies. There are also clear calls for a seamless experience where a worker can move from home to office without compromising their workspace.
One channel source said that many customers were still struggling to settle on a hybrid strategy and were fearful of getting it wrong, but also wanted to encourage a return to the office to encourage greater levels of collaboration. “The three days in and two at home model seems to be the one most have settled on, but it’s still early days,” he said.