By Michael Moore
The U.K. is struggling to turn into a nation of mobile workers as productivity apparently takes a nosedive whenever we are out of the office, a report has found.
Research by Ricoh found that 75 percent of U.K. workers believed they were less productive when away from their desks as they did not have the right technology to do their jobs effectively.
Only 26 percent of the 1,007 workers surveyed said that they were at their most productive when working from home and only 9 percent said they could be at their most productive when hot-desking at another office.
On the Clock
Much of this lost productivity was down to not having the right technology, the survey found.
Twenty-two percent of respondents said they would want to work from home but didn't have the right technology to do so, and nearly half of those who do work from home say not having the right equipment negatively affects their productivity.
However, workers were largely optimistic about how technology could improve productivity, and largely backed the introduction of further improvements if they helped cut down on menial tasks such as administration and printing.
The introduction of virtual profiles which would allow access to a company's IT offering from any device and online collaboration tools were popular technologies that respondents wanted implemented into their workplace, as were tablets to replace paper documents in meetings.
"The overwhelming message from this research is that U.K. employees feel technology has vastly improved productivity in and out of the office, but there is still a lot of room for further improvement," said Phil Keoghan, chief executive officer at Ricoh U.K.
"With the recent drive towards a mobile workforce, it is surprising that so few people feel they are as productive when working at home or away from the office. It is particularly worrying that people feel less productive at other company offices, where it is very easy to replicate their working environment.
Overall, the survey did find that many workers felt their productivity had been improved over recent years, thanks to a range of recent technological advances, with smartphones, cloud computing, tablets and, video conferencing all gaining kudos
"This is not about spending a fortune on technology; it is largely about making simple policy changes to allow people easy access to company networks, providing people with laptops and tablets, and training them in how to use them," added Keoghan.