GetApp Unveils Results of Workforce Trends Study, Uncovering Shifts in Remote Work, Privacy and AI SMB Perceptions

Research From Software Insights Company Shows a 400 Percent Increase in Remote Working Behaviors, a Data Security Knowledge-Gap and an Unpreparedness to Tackle AI-Fueled Business Transformation

GetApp, a recommendation engine that helps SMBs make informed software purchasing decisions, announced the results on a new research study which examined the impact emerging technologies are having on workforces, large and small. The study, of more than 900 respondents who reported full-time employment in the United States, identified how emerging technologies have impacted remote work culture, attitudes towards data and privacy, and the perceptions of skills evolution.

The study found that remote work is becoming a more standard part of the average work-life balance, with 36 percent of people working remotely once a week, up from less than 10 percent in 2010. In addition, the study found that despite the significant increase in enterprise privacy breaches, only about half of employees surveyed had received data security training. Finally, despite feeling unprepared for transformation, the US workforce expects artificial intelligence to have the most significant impact on their industries and jobs – far above smart devices, drones, virtual reality, and autonomous vehicles.

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“While we can all sense the impact that technology is having in our world, the study uncovered just how profoundly technology is evolving our workplace,” said Thibaut de Lataillade, global vice president for GetApp. “From drastic shifts to work-life balance, to demands for new skills and training, entrepreneurs and business leaders need to understand these trends, the technologies that underpin them, and determine the best course to digital transformation. And that’s exactly what GetApp is here to do – advise leaders and help them find and apply the right technology to meet the needs of their business and their employees.”

The new research study from GetApp, which recently celebrated its 10-year anniversary, investigated the role of technology in the workforce evolution over the past decade. Specifically, the survey focused on culture, data and skills to help business leaders and employees better understand these seismic technology shifts – and prepare to seize opportunity by leveraging the right software to secure maximum results.

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Key findings of the study include:

Working remotely is becoming a standard practice, not a rare privilege.

The rise of remote work has been driven by increased accessibility to powerful mobile devices, the abundance of new collaboration technologies, and the pervasiveness of cloud-based storage and SaaS solutions. These factors have converged to remove any limits on where you can connect with colleagues and get work done. As a result, 58 percent of respondents work remotely at least once a month, an indication of more flexible work policies made possible by the proliferation of technology. In addition, GetApp’s study found that nearly 40 percent of the workforce works remotely once per week – up from less than 10 percent in 2010 according to US Census Bureau data – an increase of nearly 400%.

Employees don’t feel prepared to manage their most lucrative asset – data.

While the rapid adoption of technology in the workplace has had positive cultural impacts, it has also created new obstacles. The new GetApp study discovered employees feel underprepared to face the security challenges that come with an increasingly data-fueled business landscape. Gartner predicts increased vulnerabilities, as the number of IoT endpoints is expected to grow from 4.8 billion in 2019 to nearly 6 billion in 2020. Despite this trend, only slightly more than half of employees reported receiving data security training. What’s more, only two out of every five employees receive training on a regular basis. As data is one of the most valuable assets for businesses today and well into the future, ensuring employees can protect their data – and apply insights for a business advantage – will be the difference between disrupting and being disrupted.

AI will change the nature of work the most, but employees aren’t prepared for transformation.

While it is accepted that artificial intelligence has and will continue to change businesses and complete markets, implementation is still nascent. The study discovered that while 44 percent of employees expect AI to be the most disruptive technology to business in the future, only 12 percent could affirm that their organization uses the technology today. As disruptive as this technology is anticipated to be, ensuring employees trust their employer and the technology at hand will be critical to its adoption and success. As a result, businesses should consider more transparent policies with regard to how AI is being used in their organization, and encourage employees to learn, become trained and up-skilled to apply the technology in the future.

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