Vyopta Survey Reveals Executives Don’t Fully Trust One Third of Remote Workers to Effectively Perform

Nearly one quarter say their company has fired a staff member over audio or video call errors

Vyopta, the Collaboration Intelligence Company, released the results of a study on the real-life consequences of remote and hybrid work. Conducted by Wakefield Research, the study surveyed 200 U.S. executives at companies of 500 or more employees between July 30 and August 10, when Covid numbers began again to rise and return to office plans were yet again put on hold.

When asked what percentage of your staff do you fully trust to be able to correctly navigate the remote technology needed to make remote work successful, the average response among executives was just 66%. That means that executives do not fully trust a full third of their staff to effectively perform when working remotely.

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Online Accountability.

In addition, nearly a quarter of those surveyed reported they have seen an employee fired because of video or audio conference mistakes. It seems that business leaders expect employees to figure it out — or pay the price.

It is not just firing: 83% have seen an employee receive some disciplinary action. Top actions executives have seen enacted over a call or video conference error include moving the responsibility of managing/facilitating meetings or calls to another staff member (53%); Giving an informal (40%) or formal (38%) reprimand; and Removing a staff member from a project (33%).

Nearly three in five business leaders (58%) responded that it is the company’s responsibility to ensure remote collaboration technology is working smoothly. But the other 42% say the burden is on employees to keep collaboration technology up and running.

Bottom Line.

It might seem harsh to punish someone over a videoconference mix-up, but executives know that when these things don’t go smoothly, they pay a price. Nearly a third (32%) have lost a client or business opportunity because of technology or connection issues. Another 41% have missed a project deadline.

Here to Stay.

An overwhelming 97% of executives said they are currently offering or are planning to offer hybrid work options; this new mode of work is not going anywhere. Nearly three out of four executives (72%) plan to maintain or expand the number of employees allowed to work a hybrid schedule in the next 12 months—including 29% who say that number is expected to grow.

Into the Unknown.

But even as they try to establish this new hybrid work environment and push their employees to make it work, executives themselves admit they are guessing. More than half of the executives (58%) are very concerned that their company does not fully understand what employees are looking for in a hybrid work option—pointing to the need for guidance and support as they ramp up hybrid efforts.

“The data clearly shows that there is a misalignment in expectations regarding remote and hybrid work between management and employees and a lack of training on how to manage and perform in this new way of working,” said Alfredo Ramirez, CEO of Vyopta. “Since Vyopta develops software to optimize collaboration, our teams are proficient in using technology for remote and hybrid work. However, we are continually focused on how we can help foster collaborative work among our team and on how we help enhance productivity in any work environment.”

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