Skip to main content

UK SMBs don't think they'll be able to embrace hybrid working

remote work
(Image credit: Image Credit: Gpointstudio / Shutterstock)

Employees at small and medium-sized organizations in the UK don’t believe they’ll be able to fully embrace hybrid working and expect to be back in the office as soon as Covid-19 permits.

This is according to a new report from digital services and printing solutions provider Ricoh Europe, which found that these workers don’t believe they can be as productive at home, but do see a solution in automation.

Polling 1,400 office workers for the report, Ricoh found that almost three in five expect to be predominantly office-based once the restrictions are lifted. This return to the office is driven mainly by employee workload and the lack of tools that enable high-value tasks to be performed remotely.

The problem is only made worse by SMBs not investing enough funds into automating various processes. Some employees find it hard to access insights and information from company systems, preventing them from delivering optimal customer service in a remote working environment. 

Consequently, this puts them at a disadvantage against large organizations, whose staff are better equipped for customer experience optimization.

For half of the survey’s respondents, automated processes are the answer. Not only are they able to improve the working experience, they’re also pivotal to retaining top talent. A quarter of the poll’s respondents considered moving to a competitor that’s better equipped for remote working.

Furthermore, automating key processes would improve customer loyalty and establish small businesses as a more digitally savvy organizations, it was concluded.