The 'Everywhere Workplace' is undeniably the future of work, and digital experience is its top enabler. However, nearly half (49%) of employees are frustrated by the tech and tools their organisation provides, 64% believe that the way they interact with technology directly impacts morale, and 26% are considering quitting their jobs because they lack suitable tech.
These are the findings of the State of the Digital Employee Experience (DEX) study by Ivanti, the provider of the Ivanti Neurons automation platform that discovers, manages, secures, and services IT assets from cloud to edge.
As per the report, 42% have spent their own money on better tech to work more productively, and 65% believe they would be more productive if they had better technology at their disposal.
Ivanti worked with global digital transformation experts and surveyed 10,000 office workers, IT professionals, and the C-Suite to evaluate the level of prioritisation and adoption of DEX in organisations and how it shapes the daily working experiences for employees.
Profitability prioritised over employee experience
Globally the C-Suite's number one priority was employee productivity, with workplace culture and employee satisfaction falling further down the list.
Furthermore, 62% of the C-Suite concede that leadership prioritises profitability over employee experience.
As employee experience continues to fall to the bottom of the C-Suite agenda, IT will continue to deprioritise it on their end too, with only 21% of IT leaders considering the end user experience to be the main priority when selecting new tools, says the report.
"Ensuring positive employee digital experiences is the new cornerstone of modern business IT management. The improvement of workforce productivity helps attract and retain essential talent, accelerates business agility and competitiveness, reduces operational costs, and drives organisational success and profitability. Understanding DEX requirements is the key to adapting related technologies and practices that will support each organisation's unique environment," noted Steve Brasen, Research Director with Enterprise Management Associates.
Technology and hybrid work culture
Conflicting views remain between C-Suite, IT, and employees when it comes to the future of work and technology's role in enabling the culture of hybrid work.
Just 13% of knowledge workers prefer to work exclusively from the office, yet 56% of CXOs still feel that employees need to be in the office to be productive, although 74% of the C-Suite report they are more productive since the start of the pandemic – showing a disconnect between what they have experienced and what they believe employees need to do to be productive.
Hybrid work hassles
Innovation is undeniably the driving force behind the rise of hybrid work, but the unfortunate truth is that many organisations still experience major challenges in its adoption.
The top challenges reported by office workers include too many emails or chat messages (28%), a lack of connection to co-workers (27%), and software not working properly (23%).
But despite these challenges and executive skepticism, all groups reported being more productive in the era of hybrid work, highlighting the fact that it is not so much the place of work that impacts productivity, but the experience that people have when interacting with technology.
"The Everywhere Workplace has forever changed employee expectations when it comes to where they work, how they work, and what device they work on. How employees interact with technology and their satisfaction with that experience directly relates to the success and value they deliver to the organisation. The Digital Employee Experience should be a board level priority, and IT teams are poised to be strategic leaders in their organisation to make it happen,” said Jeff Abbott, CEO, Ivanti.
The growing variety of devices and networks that hybrid workers use has greatly expanded the inventory of assets that IT teams need to manage, but 32% of IT professionals still use spreadsheets to track these assets and only 47% agree completely that their organisations have full visibility into every device that attempts to access their network.
Security stays a concern
One of the biggest challenges facing IT leaders today is the need to enable a seamless end user experience while maintaining robust security. The challenge becomes more complex when there is pressure from the top to bypass security measures, with 49% of C-level executives reporting they have requested to bypass one or more security measures in the last year.
“Maintaining a secure environment and focusing on the digital employee experience are two inseparable elements of any digital transformation. In the war for talent, a key differentiator for organisations is providing an exceptional and secure digital experience. We believe that organizations not prioritising how their employees experience technology is a contributing factor for the Great Resignation," said Abbott.
With the availability of innovative new technologies that both enable and support hybrid workforces, IT now has the opportunity to make a positive impact on broader organisational strategy.
By taking ownership of the digital employee experience and working closely with the C-Suite to accomplish common goals, IT can drive better business outcomes – from employee productivity to workforce retention, the report stresses.