The coronavirus outbreak has forced most companies to close their offices and ask employees to work from home. While some staff will enjoy this newfound freedom, others are set to struggle, as a significant portion of businesses don’t have the proper tech infrastructure to manage remote working in the long term.
This is according to a new report from Leonne International, polling 200 senior decision-makers from large and medium-sized companies.
The report states that more than a quarter (26 percent) of respondents believe their company lacks skilled workers to manage “widespread and long-term remote working for staff”
Meanwhile, four in ten businesses intend to increase their IT and tech investment to support their employees working in home isolation and almost half agree businesses should be more open to collaboration at this trying time.
More than a quarter (28 percent) said they were planning on making redundancies to make it through the crisis, and over half (55 percent) expect their revenue to “substantially” drop this year due to Covid-19.
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According to Sridhar Iyengar, MD of Zoho Europe, the pandemic is an existential threat to many businesses, as “a significant number of companies is completely unprepared for the sudden shift towards 100 per cent remote working.”
“With this in mind, it is vital that technology providers work together to offer free IT support and advice to those who need it, in an effort to protect jobs, livelihoods and the wider economy.”
He goes on to explain many businesses are struggling to organise virtual meetings, provide essential daily briefings and manage projects online, which is why the tech industry has a “moral obligation” to offer resources and help businesses adapt.
“It’s up to the IT industry to rise to this challenge, take and action and do everything possible to provide comfort and support during this difficult period," he added.
Coronavirus is believed to have originated in the Chinese province of Wuhan. To date, more than 425,000 have been infected and roughly 18,900 have died. More than 100,000 people have recovered.