Companies have poured effort and resources into developing digital strategies and implementing technological tools to ensure that workers can communicate, collaborate, and stay productive while working remotely. But one and a half years into the great remote work shift, research by Citrix is finding that the tools aren't functioning as intended.
The Citrix Work Your Way study, which surveyed 1,000 IT decision makers and 2,000 workers across the US, found that the number of tools employees are required to use to do their jobs has significantly increased since last year. And unsurprisingly, complexity in the workplace has also increased.
According to the survey findings, 64 percent of workers are using more communication and collaboration tools than they were prior to the pandemic. And 71 percent of these say that the tools have made their work more complex.
“People are working the same or more hours, but they’re accomplishing less because technology is getting in their way,” said Tim Minahan, Executive Vice President of Business Strategy at Citrix. “Employees are frustrated, and to keep them engaged and performing at their best, companies need to eliminate the friction and noise from work and deliver technology that adapts to their workstyles rather than forcing them to learn new ways of doing things.”
The findings also showed, however, that employees' frustration has not affected their desire for flexibility—unsurprising given that other research has shown people would rather quit than give up flexible work schedules. Citrix's own survey turned up a 90 percent rate of people wanting continued flexibility even after the pandemic ends.
Minahan suggested: “As companies organize around new, hybrid work models, they need to rethink the role of technology and how they apply it across their organizations so that employees, rather than being frustrated, are empowered to succeed.”