Although 2016 was a turbulent year politically and economically, employees across Europe are “overwhelmingly positive” that their businesses will succeed in the year ahead, claims Ricoh Europe.
The printers and copiers provider commissioned research, which suggests that 91% of employees surveyed expect digital disruption, economic uncertainty and political turbulence to change how they work in the near-future. Yet 95% also believe this period of change will benefit their business.
European employees also share a wider positive outlook, with 59% expecting the business they work for to be in a stronger position by the end of the year than it is today. Two in three believe the leader of their company is prepared to tackle the changing landscape and only 8% of employees have no faith in their leader, with the remaining 26% unsure.
According to polled employees, technology sits at the heart of enabling success in the year ahead, reports Ricoh. The effects of digital disruption and the opportunities/change generated by competitive innovation are expected to have the greatest influence, with increasing automation freeing up time for workers to deliver more value.
Employees expect their businesses to be more creative and less wasteful with resources and to adopt new technologies quicker. 61% would like their companies to use technology to balance these changes. This includes improving customer communications, increasing productivity through collaboration technologies and the use of digital technologies to simplify business processes.
However, the research comes with a warning. In these times of change, businesses must be wary that they remain attractive prospects to draw the best talent as employees also seek stability in their roles. Job security, solid financial backing and the opportunity to work for a larger enterprise are the biggest draws for jobseekers.
“How people relate to, engage and execute their work is fundamentally changing,” said David Mills, chief executive officer (CEO) of Ricoh Europe. “In the years ahead we’ll see businesses fall into two distinct camps. Firstly, those with strong fundamental processes which empower employees by enabling them to do their best work, adapt and thrive. Secondly, those businesses which shy away from change and unfortunately set their employees up for failure.
“As the world feels the impact of unprecedented change, business leaders must ask themselves where they see the most beneficial return on bringing more innovative technology into the company. To enable their business to stay focused on its long- term goals, and remain competitive, often the best place to start is with theiremployees.”
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