A new study conducted on behalf of Lenovo has found that small and medium businesses (SMB) across Asia are still behind when it comes to employee tech expectations.
As more and more devices become mobile and flexible, 73 percent of SMB employees are still anchored on desktop computers and only 25 percent are able to access cloud-based tools that enable more diverse working styles.
The study conducted by Forrester Consulting, on behalf of Lenovo, surveyed more than 750 SMB employees and device buyers across seven markets in Asia.
“Customer experience is critically linked to employee experience — in other words, happier customers come from happier employees. That means SMBs can gain competitive advantage by ensuring today’s diverse employees can work in a style that suits them best. However, our new study reveals that while 78% of Asia’s SMBs say they want employee experience to be a high or critical priority, there is still a strong need for them to put more focus on what makes a difference in employees’ working lives: the quality of the technology they use every day,” said Michael Ngan, Lenovo Philippines general manager.
A key finding from the study was that there is a strong correlation between productivity and employees’ overall satisfaction at work with technology being a key factor in enabling productivity. 75 percent of productive employees are satisfied with their devices or IT support, while figures for unproductive employees is approximately a third.
Device failures and downtime were found to hinder the effectiveness of technology in the workplace with 36 percent of employees having to replace their devices due to features and functionalities not supporting their work requirements. Device issues also ranked in the top three daily distractions for more than a third of all employees. Basic device problems such as long loading time and slow file transfers (35 %), outdated software or systems (29%), and device crashes or freezes (28%) were highlighted as the top three issues faced by SMB employees.
Also according to the study, only 15 percent of IT decision-makers consider their employees’ point of view when making purchase decisions. The study also found that only 10 percent of device buyers took a product’s look and feel into consideration – a missed opportunity to improve employee satisfaction especially because product design is important in today’s new workforce.
A separate Lenovo study found that millennials and Gen Z make up nearly 60 percent of the workforce today. These technologically savvy employees often expect companies to offer them “go anywhere” PC options. More than a quarter of Asian SMB employees have displayed an interest in exploring more form factors and types of devices such as 2-in-1s and tablets in the workspace.
The Forrester study also found that SMB employers are still over-optimistic about their ability to provide a positive experience at work. 77 percent of employers believe that their company offers a good company experience, but only 55 percent of employees felt satisfied at work. This perception gap was particularly evident in Taiwan, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Singapore. The survey also revealed a strong gap between employers and employees in terms of they understand productivity: 74 percent of SMBs in Asia say they are already enabling a productive work environment, only 60 percent of their employees concurred.
“SMBs should aim to provide what employees will need, not only today but in the years to come,” said Ngan, “Employees want to be more mobile and flexible at work in general, and it is up to SMB decision-makers to make informed decisions on which solutions will best meet their needs now and in the future. To respond to the rising demands of employees at SMBs, we have introduced ThinkBook 14 and ThinkBook 15, business-oriented laptops that balance design and performance. The devices are designed to improve employee experience, and to deliver business-grade performance coupled with easy-to-use security housed in a stylish aluminum finish.”
For more information the Lenovo Thinkbook and other Lenovo products visit https://lenovo.com/ph/en/solutions/smb/thinkbook.