Amid this Shift, Business Leaders are Grappling with How to Invest to Address the Unique Needs of a Hybrid Workforce
May 27, 2022– Kyndryl (NYSE: KD), the world’s largest IT infrastructure services provider, today announced the findings of the newly launched Kyndryl ASEAN Digital Transformation Study 2022, in collaboration with technology research and advisory firm Ecosystm. The study aims to highlight the key drivers of business strategy decisions today for organizations in ASEAN as the nature of work moves to hybrid models.
Five hundred C-suite leaders participated in the study across ASEAN, and the findings revealed the majority of organizations are moving to a hybrid work model. Alongside this dramatic change, however, business leaders are grappling with how to invest in building an agile, secure digital workplace that addresses the evolving needs – and newfound threats – of this hybrid workforce. The results indicate that 2022 will be a significant year where business leaders will rapidly define or re-define their organization’s cloud and cyber strategies; modernize applications and infrastructure; and build out a data architecture that delivers security and resiliency.
Several key insights from the study highlight the most pressing challenges and opportunities business leaders face as they adapt and invest in addressing the needs of a more dynamic, digital working environment.
1) Evolve the Physical Workplace
72% of knowledge workers in ASEAN will move to a hybrid model where they work remotely some days and from the office on others. Business leaders are evolving their IT resources to support a hybrid work culture that allows a seamless interplay between the office and remote environments. As a result, organizations are evaluating investments in hardware collaboration tools, as well as enhanced security and network performance, to provide employees with a more dynamic digital workplace that meets their needs.
2) Build a True Hybrid Work Culture
As organizations form their digital workplace strategy, they will have to ensure that the workplace is as comfortable as home offices. 50% of the respondents cited videoconferencing solutions as a key requirement for their evolving workspaces. In most cases, the actual office space will need a re-design, based on the nature of work and employee preferences – for example, only a third of organizations have increased the number of open quiet spaces. Evolving changes may also include smaller meeting or huddle rooms, larger meeting rooms, or more “hot desks.” Employees will use these office spaces for different activities (one-on-one meetings, brainstorming, remote client conferences and so on) – and each setting will need the right technology to support employees.
3) Focus on Employee Wellbeing
Only 25% of respondents have made changes to their HR policies in the last two years, despite the unprecedented challenges workers have faced. Many employees have experienced physical ailments, emotional issues and financial problems. The evolution of HR is a pressing need, especially around retention – as the study finds that 47% of knowledge workers in the region are looking to change their jobs and careers in 2022.
4) Invest in the Right Technologies
Half of the respondents believe that adopting Employee Experience (EX) technologies is a key priority for hybrid workplaces. To build that resilient hybrid workplace, organizations are re-evaluating their technology investments over the last two years, and many will find some of the technology they’ve invested in to be redundant. Improving EX requires investments in a wide range of tech capabilities including access to the right workloads, better collaboration, monitoring employee well-being, safety and safe distancing, and better cyber risk management. Organizations will need a common platform that can help them manage these disparate solutions.
5) Continue to Monitor Employee Behavior Patterns
As organizations work toward a ‘Return to Work’ policy, they will see significant changes in employee usage behavior patterns. If the right cyber practices are not in place, this could leave organizations vulnerable again. Despite 57% of respondents having concerns on phishing and malware attacks at the start of the pandemic, organizations have not done enough to make themselves cyber-resilient – and the threat landscape is continually evolving. Less than half of the respondents indicated they have taken critical measures like improving network security and providing updated security training to employees, and only 19% have appointed a Chief Information Security Officer. This can have immense operational, financial and reputational repercussions.
“The future of work is still evolving and will look different for every organization. Empathy, inclusion and empowerment are becoming key pillars of the hybrid work model as organizations need to develop new measures and policies around productivity and employee wellbeing,” said Ullrich Loeffler, CEO of Ecosystm. “While technology is the enabler, the success of a hybrid workplace will depend on the synergy between IT and business functions led by HR.”
“In this age of agility, leaders must accommodate employees’ needs to release their true potential. We can enable new technologies to provide long-term secure and resilient work spaces that eliminate barriers such as geography and economic status. Importantly, leaders must create a culture that encourages all voices be heard – one that is grounded in trust, transparency and integrity,” said Susan Follis, Managing Director at Kyndryl ASEAN. “We can create inclusion and belonging regardless of where our employees chose to work. Let’s embrace the paradigm shift and build a more sustainable, inclusive and empathetic workplace.”
With over 4,000 customers across the world, including 75 of the Fortune 100 companies, Kyndryl is partnering with organizations in ASEAN to re-invent the digital workplace and enable employees to work and collaborate with agility and security. Recently, Kyndryl received the ServiceNow APJ Transformation Partner of the Year Award, in recognition of the company’s ability to deliver Digital Workplace services that bring transformative benefits to customers.
Kyndryl (NYSE: KD) is the world’s largest IT infrastructure services provider. The Company designs, builds, manages and modernizes the complex, mission-critical information systems that the world depends on every day. Kyndryl’s more than 90,000 employees serve over 4,000 customers in more than 100 countries around the world, including 75 percent of the Fortune 100 companies. For more information, visit www.kyndryl.com.