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– New research shows 7 in 10 UK employees dread contacting their IT department for support –


JULY 2021, LONDON, UK: Research investigating how IT departments are coping with a move to remote working has shown that over two thirds of UK office workers (69%) have had a negative experience with the IT department – either dreading it, feeling patronised, intimated or frustrated at the length of the time they have to wait to resolve a problem.

Some UK IT departments might take offence by these latest findings, and they have a case with almost half of the same UK respondents (45%) stating that it hasn’t taken any longer to resolve an issue whilst working remotely than it would in the office.

However, there is clearly room for improvement with an equal amount (45%) saying that they have had to wait longer for an issue to be resolved – with 73% going on to say they have had to wait up to an extra five hours for an issue to be fixed.

The results are part of the ‘Supporting Your Remote Workforce in 2021 and Beyond report, commissioned by Smart Locker Provider Velocity Smart Technology, which surveyed 1000 office workers in the UK and 2000 in the USA.

Anthony Lamoureux, CEO of Velocity Smart Technology, said, “The results provide an insight into the pressure that IT departments have been under for the past 15 months, with many workplaces going from zero to full remote working almost overnight. This urgent demand undoubtedly led to many IT departments adopting quick-fixes out of a necessity to support their workforce, rather than putting in place a long term plan that can be scaled – which has resulted in poor experiences.”

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The employee service from American IT department’s is only marginally better, with 60% of US office workers reporting a negative experience.

In the USA however, there are larger gains to be made with more than half of office workers (52%) stating that they have to wait longer to get an IT problem fixed – with 76% of those waiting anywhere from one to five hours for a solution.

Lamoureux continues, “Now is the time to invest in more robust technology to support remote workforces for the long term. Many employees are fed up with long, gruelling commutes or have found a happy balance between home and work life and so for many businesses, this means coming to terms with the death of the traditional 9 to 5 working day and putting in place better IT provisions.”

Deloitte recently published a report on “Reimagining operating models to thrive in the new normal”, calling on business leaders to let go of long-held beliefs of how and where employees must work, and instead adapt to the ‘new normal’ way of working. Indeed, the Velocity Smart research provided ideas for future innovations that UK and USA office workers think will improve local IT support:

  • Over a third of UK office workers (38%) would welcome round the clock telephone support from an IT technician – increasing to almost half in the USA (48%).
  • Over three quarters of UK office workers (77%) would welcome a smart locker being made available at or close to their office premises to provide 24/7 IT support in the event of an IT failure – increasing to 86% of USA office workers.

Lamoureux concludes, “At the moment, IT teams in the UK and USA are stretched beyond the limit propping up hastily constructed remote working processes, many of which include laborious repetitive tasks such as replacing broken or ineffective IT equipment. By removing these manual repetitive tasks and automating them through wholly integrated service desk applications, IT technicians and engineers can focus on solving the employee problems, and start to repair their reputation within their respective organisations.”

Conducted in December 2020 Velocity Smart Technology commissioned the research to understand how businesses can make their workplace safer in the era of Covid-19, how performance and productivity can be improved, and what technology solutions can be put in place to improve IT Support efficiencies and business value.

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