A study into IT professionals’ and IT users’ attitudes towards productivity in the workplace by unified communications and IT services provider, Intercity Technology, has revealed a clear disconnect. IT departments are thought to be much further behind than they should be in supporting current working trends by IT users, such as remote working and device strategies. This is despite half of the IT Managers surveyed feeling that the IT strategy they have in place is effective in supporting business success and less than 10% believing it is business critical.
The disconnect between IT users and IT professionals is consistent throughout the research findings. 72% of IT users believing that they should have more influence over the solutions they generally use for their job. This conflicts with IT Manager opinion. With less than a third of IT teams polled asking for feedback from IT users before making a purchasing decision on new telephone systems or software products, with around half making the purchasing decision internally within the IT team.
“Employee productivity is suffering as IT often serves as a barrier rather than an enabler,” comments Maria Grant, Product Director at Intercity Technology. “Our research has shown that there is a clear disconnect between what IT is provided to employees and what employees need in order to be productive and this disconnect varies by company size where enterprises face different gaps from SMEs. This is potentially why our research has found that IT departments fall behind by nearly two years when it comes to supporting current working trends.”
The importance of IT users having more influence over the business solutions they use is amplified further by the fact that 79% of IT users feel that the right technology has the potential to make them more productive in the workplace than they currently are. However, reticence from IT departments could be due to the fact that half of IT managers are concerned with security breaches and data loss when introducing new technologies.
“The consumerisation of IT has seen IT users become increasingly tech savvy and therefore more in tune with what is required for them to be productive in the workplace,” concludes Grant. “Our research has shown that involving employees and working in partnership with them in the decision making process can help develop an understanding, not just around what IT they need, but why they need it. Through doing this, the IT function can enable employees to be more productive and also drive business profitability.”