Businesses prioritize security and collaboration tools to manage sustained remote work environments
Among those surveyed, the percentage working from home had abruptly jumped from 28 percent prior to the pandemic to 71 percent during the outbreak. The survey included more than 200 IT executives in the U.S. across various industries.
Manage remote work: High productivity, effectiveness and morale
IT professionals identified many challenges in their response to COVID-19, but felt that their productivity, effectiveness and morale remained high. Eighty-four percent of respondents believed that the “survival” of their companies depended on “providing a stable work environment” during and after the pandemic.
Seventy-eight percent said that technical support requests had also increased. Even so, 49 percent indicated that their volume of work “stayed the same” with another 32 percent noting that it was “higher than usual.”
Most IT professionals surveyed believe they were “very effective” (57 percent) or “somewhat effective” (40 percent) at solving urgent problems that arose during the pandemic. Only 3 percent believed their response was “not effective.”
Seventy nine percent said it took up to 3 weeks to establish a stable work environment, but only 41 percent were confident they had sufficient VPN capacity.
Video conferencing as the most effective tool
As part of the initial “work from home” response, video conferencing topped the list as the most effective tool (66 percent), followed by cloud storage (59 percent), device management (49 percent) and collaboration (47 percent), according to respondents.
“Businesses capably managed the rapid transition to remote work in response to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Gautam Goswami, CMO at TeamViewer. “But it’s critical that IT professionals remain focused on strengthening their infrastructure to guarantee business continuity by putting a range of secure remote connectivity solutions in place.”
“Work from home” concerns
Respondents also identified other concerns as they continue to manage through the pandemic’s extended “work from home” arrangements.
- Planning for a new normal: On average, IT executives expect that it will take more than seven months to return to “business as usual.” As businesses fortify their infrastructure, 85 percent “agree” or “strongly agree” that their organization will be prepared to manage a future coronavirus outbreak.
- Security is a top priority: Security remains a top priority for 57 percent of the IT executives surveyed, particularly in response to employees using their own devices and moving from private company networks to the public internet with more access points and increased vulnerabilities.
- Remote work will continue to trend: Eighty percent of IT leaders say they expect more employees to permanently work remotely, but only 38 percent are sure they have the training needed to handle the rise in remote work.
- Budget increases: Sixty-nine percent of organizations channelled new funds to IT in the wake of the pandemic, and 80 percent expect say they need additional budget during the next year.