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The New Digital Workplace Divide: Singapore’s Successful Digital Workplaces Drive Employee Engagement, Productivity and Talent Retention with Positive Impacts on the Bottom Line

Singaporeans see Artificial Intelligence and IoT as key to their future

SINGAPORE, 27 June 2018 – The key to keeping digital workers productive and engaged and retaining top talent? Arm them with up-to-date technology, according to a new study by Unisys Corporation (NYSE: UIS) that explores the importance of deploying current and future digital capabilities in the workplace.

The New Digital Workplace Divide: Why a Technology-Enabled Workplace is Critical to Business Success surveyed 1,003 adults in Singapore (April 2018) and found a significant “digital divide” between employers based on the technology their employees use in their jobs – “technology leaders” and “technology laggards”. The study examines the human impact of new digital workplace trends.

Key highlights from the Singapore results:

  • Technology laggards breed employee frustration and attrition - 56 percent of Singaporeans working for technology laggards feel negative toward their employer - 40 percent saying the technology they use at work makes them feel frustrated with their employer and 16 percent say that it makes them want to work elsewhere.
  • Devices are the biggest pain point for workers at technology laggard organisations - 42 percent of digital workers in technology laggard organisations complain they are held back from being more productive by outdated devices, compared to only 22 percent at technology leader organisations.
  • Singapore is doing better than the global average, but work remains to be done - Only 35 percent of Singaporeans describe their employer as being ahead of their competitors in their use of technology – “leaders” – which is higher than the global average of 31 percent; however, still represents a little more than one-third of workers.
  • Security needs to be a priority in Singapore - The “Bring Your Own Device” to work movement, allows greater access to company information and brings with it potential security risks. Seventy percent of digital workers in Singapore say they download apps and websites not supported by their organisation’s IT group because they are “better than what my company provided” or “their company did not provide an alternative.” This compares to the global average of 63 percent. Additionally, 77 percent of digital workers in Singapore admit to using workarounds that bypass security protocols – six percentage points higher than the global average

The survey also found that 72 percent of Singaporeans digital workers use laptops (compared with 56 percent globally) and 71 percent have the ability to work remotely (versus 60 percent globally). Fifty-five percent of digital workers use their personal smartphone for work, indicating there is a clear appetite to for technology that allows them to be more mobile.

“The research underscores how the digital workplace encompasses a wide ecosystem of people, culture, technology and processes – it’s not just about how up to date your IT is or whether you can log in from home,” said Mr Leon Sayers, Consulting Practice Lead, Unisys Asia Pacific. “How you work defines your workplace – and vice-versa. To achieve successful digital transformation employers must take a holistic approach to organisational change.”

The Correlation between Technology, Productivity and the Bottom Line
While many business leaders know that unhappy employees cost them money, many would be shocked at how high that cost actually can be. Organisations who invest in employees have 4.2 times the average profit of those who do not.1 And the impact on the bottom line to replace a salaried employee is commonly predicted six to nine months’ salary on average2.

“The cost of not engaging employees in the workplace has real consequences. Personal productivity is a key motivator that not only impacts an employee’s ability to do their job efficiently, but also how engaged and committed they are to their employer. Designing and implementing an effective digital workplace requires effective organisational change management and consultation to ensure employees have the right technology to do their jobs, and they are comfortable using it,” said Mr Sayers.

Impact of emerging technologies in the workplace – friend of foe?
Singaporean employees predict Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things (IoT) as having the greatest potential to improve the working environment in the next five years. Such enthusiasm is tempered - 55 percent of employees at technology leader organisations believe their job could be done entirely by machines in the next five years (ahead of the 44 percent globally).

“AI benefits sectors with clear decision protocols such as credit card application assessments. Whereas industries that rely on workers being able to monitor situations in the field, such as social workers or police, will benefit from IoT. Employees should not fear these powerful emerging technologies - those organisations who modernise their technology and business processes in the right way will be best positioned to lead. Technology innovation will enhance the workplace, with humans and machines working together to increase productivity,” said Mr Sayers.

Download the full reports of Singapore and global results or details on the research methodology here.

Download the New Digital Workplace Divide infographics and other information here.

1 – Harvard Business Review: Why the Millions We Spend on Employee Engagement Buy Us So Little
2 – PeopleKeep: Employee Retention - The Real Cost of Losing An Employee

About Unisys
Unisys is a global information technology company that builds high-performance, security-centric solutions for the most demanding businesses and governments on Earth. Unisys offerings include security software and services; digital transformation and workplace services; industry applications and services; and innovative software operating environments for high-intensity enterprise computing. For more information on how Unisys builds better outcomes securely for its clients across the Government, Financial Services and Commercial markets, visit www.unisys.com.sg. Follow Unisys on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Contact:

Lisa Richardson, Unisys
+61 402 896 829, lisa.richardson@unisys.com

Unisys and other Unisys products and services mentioned herein, as well as their respective logos, are trademarks or registered trademarks of Unisys Corporation. Any other brand or product referenced herein is acknowledged to be a trademark or registered trademark of its respective holder.