Employee expectations around workplace IT should come as no surprise - they align with how we live today, Google Enterprise Asia and Pacific managing director Doug Farber says. Photo: Michele O'Sullivan
Aussies love sports, the beach - and technology. A nation of early adopters, Australia has some of the highest rates of smartphone and tablet usage in the world. Yet despite being ahead of the curve at home, many tech-savvy Australians are frustrated with the technology that they're provided at work.
According to a new report from Deloitte, The Connected Workplace - War for Talent in the Digital Economy, Australian workers said their workplace IT falls short of expectations. Close to half of people surveyed for the report rated their home technology as more user-friendly than their work set-up, and around four in 10 said it was faster and more up-to-date.
This disconnect between personal and workplace IT has serious business implications.
Deloitte found that employees who are happy with their workplace IT policies are a third less likely to leave the company than those who are unhappy. With Australian businesses experiencing a critical shortage of skilled employees - according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, 20 per cent of businesses are struggling to find skilled workers and say that it's a barrier to innovation - getting IT right has huge implications for business longevity, productivity and the bottom line.
Businesses whose employees were most satisfied with their IT policies were identified by Deloitte as having a few characteristics in common: they allowed people to bring their own devices to work; their staff were able to access social media at work; they let people work from home or work flexible hours; and they encouraged staff to use collaborative technology.
The good news for businesses is that adopting this kind of IT approach can actually save money. Deloitte estimated that by shifting to a flexible IT policy, large companies could save up to $350,000 a year, or $2.6 million over 10 years, while small businesses could save up to $22,000 a year - all on human resources costs.
Employee expectations around workplace IT should come as no surprise - they align with how we live today. As the ranks of Generation Y and Z workers continue to grow, businesses will need to accept that people don't want to step back in time when they step into the office
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