scorecardresearch
6 in 10 employees believe hybrid work is more productive: Cisco survey

6 in 10 employees believe hybrid work is more productive: Cisco survey

Hybrid working has helped improve employee wellbeing, work-life balance, and performance across the world, according to a new global Cisco study.

Cisco's new study found that six in 10 (61 per cent) employees believe that quality of work has improved. Cisco's new study found that six in 10 (61 per cent) employees believe that quality of work has improved.

Hybrid working has helped improve employee wellbeing, work-life balance, and performance across the world, according to a new global Cisco study. 

While organisations have benefited from higher employee productivity levels, more needs to be done to build an inclusive culture and fully embed hybrid work arrangements to boost readiness levels and enhance employee experience.  

Cisco's new study found that six in 10 (61 per cent) employees believe that quality of work has improved.

A similar number (pegged at 60 per cent) felt that their productivity has enhanced.

Also Read: A new paradigm: Why firms are embracing hybrid work

Three-quarters of employees (76 per cent) also feel their role can now be performed just as successfully remotely as in the office.  However, the survey of 28,000 employees from 27 countries reveals that only one in four think that their company is 'very prepared' for a hybrid work future.   

"It is clear that hybrid working is here to stay, and for good reason as employees and businesses alike see tangible benefits across key indicators - from improved overall employee wellbeing to better productivity and work performance," said Anupam Trehan, Senior Director, People & Communities, Cisco APJC.  

"Nonetheless, more needs to be done to fully leverage the opportunities of a hybrid work future, particularly in building an inclusive culture, devising employee engagement strategies, and deploying technology infrastructure to bring organizations to the readiness levels of their employees," he added. 

Cisco's research examined the impact of hybrid working on five categories of well-being - emotional, financial, mental, physical, and social well-being - with over three-quarters of respondents (78 per cent) saying hybrid and remote working have improved various aspects of their well-being.  

Time away from the office has improved work-life balance for 79 per cent of employees.  More flexible work schedules (62 per cent) and significantly reduced or completely removed commuting times (53 per cent) contributed to this improvement.

Also Read: WFH or RTO? As COVID-19 cases rise and inflation bites, here's what firms plan

Nearly two-thirds of people (64 per cent) saved at least four hours per week when they worked from home, and over a quarter (26 per cent) of respondents saved eight or more hours a week.   

45 per cent ranked 'time with family, friends, and pets' as the top choice for how they reinvested this extra time.

This has enhanced social wellbeing, with a significant majority (73 per cent) indicating that remote working has improved family relationships and a half (51 per cent) of respondents reporting strengthened relationships with friends.   

In addition, over two-thirds (68 per cent) of respondents believe their physical fitness has improved with remote working.  

Seven in 10 (71 per cent) exercise more when they work remotely, with an average increase of 130 additional sessions a year.  A similar number (68 per cent) say hybrid working has positively impacted their eating habits.

With the evident benefits of hybrid working, the study shows that nearly three-quarters (71 per cent) want a combination of a remote and in-office hybrid working model in the future.  Around a fifth (20 per cent) want a fully remote working experience, leaving just 9 per cent who want to go to the office on a full-time basis.    

However, there is uncertainty over how different work styles might impact inclusion and engagement.  Over half of the respondents say that those who work fully remotely will have challenges engaging with their colleagues (59 per cent) and company (57 per cent), compared to those who toggle between remote and in-office work.  

Furthermore, the research finds that trust will be a critical element for organisations to manage - while 71 per cent of respondents believe their manager trusts them to be productive when working remotely, a lower number (59 per cent) believe their colleagues can be trusted to work remotely.  

These findings underscore the need for an inclusive culture to be at the forefront of the hybrid working future.

Seven in 10 (73 per cent) say their company needs to rethink its culture and mindset to make hybrid work truly inclusive.  

Key changes to support the hybrid workforce are that employees would like to see greater flexibility in defining work hours (60 per cent) and greater emphasis on employee wellness and work-life balance (60 per cent).   

At the same time, technology will remain critical to enabling a future with increasingly diverse and distributed workforces.  

Six out of 10 (62 per cent) respondents believe having connectivity issues regularly is career-limiting for remote workers.

As a result, 84 per cent say networking infrastructure is essential for a seamless working from home experience, but only 68 per cent say their company currently has the right networking infrastructure.  

More than three-quarters (78 per cent) also believe that cybersecurity is critical for making hybrid working safe, but less than two-thirds (65 per cent) say their organisation currently has the right capabilities and protocols in place.  

Only 62 per cent think that all employees across their company understand the cyber risks involved with hybrid work, and 68 per cent think business leaders are familiar with the risks.