Working from home is not productive, survey finds

Employees are failing to realise the benefits of working from home with three quarters admitting that being in the office makes the best use of their time and new technology is key to redressing this.

Research carried out by Ricoh's UK arm found that just 25 per cent of employees feel more productive when working from home, a number that drops to just nine per cent in other offices and eight per cent for those in transit.

It pales when compared to the 75 per cent that feel most productive when at their desk and Ricoh UK CEO Phil Keoghan thinks there needs to be a change in the way employees are able to access content when working from home or in another office.

“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,” said Keoghan. “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.”

Technological improvements are seen as a major way to increase productivity in the future and top of the list of changes with 50 per cent is the creation of virtual profiles to allow access to a workspace on any device. Online collaboration tools [48 per cent], and tablets to replace paper documents in meetings [44 per cent] were pointed to as other good ways to increase productivity.

Bring your own device [BYOD] policies are something that companies should be moving fast to alter in order to make working away from the office more effective. A survey carried out by Intercede last month illustrated this by showing that 23 per cent were unaware of their company's policy and 40 per cent didn’t think they needed permission before accessing corporate data on their own device.

In addition to this employees are still worried by the security implications of BYOD and a whopping 95 per cent hold concerns relating to the security risks that using a personal device for work purposes can bring.

Image Credit: Flickr (Sean MacEntee)