The workforce productivity debate has never been more relevant. Even prior to the events of 2020, academics and business leaders were in a constant dialogue about the best way to empower a workforce so that it remains at its most productive. 

In 2020, theories about how best to engage a distributed workforce have been put into practice around the world and the results have challenged the status quo of organisational management.  

Of course, the productivity we’ve seen across distributed workforces could never have been achieved without the technology we have available to us now. In particular, our ability to share and access information in real-time is perhaps the greatest driver of productivity for our distributed workforce. 

A new paradigm of wasted time 

The ability to physically see workers at their desks will always be the kind of psychological reassurance that many leaders need. There is an outdated belief that the amount of time our workers spend in the office has a direct correlation with organisational productivity. 

According to McKinsey, the many small teams that make up modern organisations are actually more productive with empowering, less-controlling management styles. They report it's much better to define the outcomes expected from small teams rather than focusing on the specific activities or the time spent on them. 

Just because an employee is at their desk doesn’t mean they aren’t wasting time, either wilfully or through no fault of their own. When we consider that employees spend 25 per cent of their time simply searching for information, is that time well spent or time wasted? 

The real productivity risk of a distributed workforce 

Between security risks and lazy employees, many leaders were ignoring the most glaring risk to powering a distributed workforce prior to 2020 — a lack of access to information. 

According to a survey of chief financial officers (CFOs) by PwC, the biggest concern over the next 12 months (2021) will be potential productivity loss due to lack of remote work capabilities. The same report points to another study that found 41 per cent of people don’t have the technology or data access they need to effectively work from home. 

More than any other factor, it will be the tools and technology you offer your workforce for accessing real-time information that will be the biggest driver of organisational effectiveness in the years to come. Even after the disruption of 2020 has subsided, organisations have realised there are more important factors at play in driving workforce productivity than simply checking people are at their desks. 

Real-time information access for your distributed workforce requires secure devices that can be managed and updated with the latest applications, browsers, and operating systems. Through a streamlined device management strategy, you can put the technology processes in place that will drive real productivity across your workforce. 

Datacom is proud to be partnering with Google to bring their Chrome Enterprise suite of Chrome OS, Chrome browser, and Chrome devices to Australian organisations who are serious about empowering their distributed workforce. 

Through the connected capabilities within this suite, and Datacom’s integration and security expertise, we can help you connect your new distributed workforce wherever they are. Contact us today to learn how to provide your people with the information they need to be at their best.

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