A study of senior IT decision makers by Citrix has found that 85pc of businesses in Ireland and the UK have increased their investment in remote working in the past year and 95pc of respondents expect this expenditure to go up further.
"This is all about ensuring staff are productive, not just present. Businesses have realised there is a false economy in sitting staff at their desks and simply expecting them to be productive. That may happen best when staff are on the move, on-site with a customer or partner, or working from home – or in fact anywhere they can get online,” said Niall Gilmore, country manager at Citrix.
“Employers must make sure that when inspiration strikes, staff can add value, not just man-hours, to the business. Flexibility and agility are key to getting companies through this recession.”
He noted that the threat of disruption to business continuity from the swine flu pandemic highlights the need for businesses to have the technology in place to allow remote working.
“Having experienced the snow chaos earlier this year and the summer floods of 2007, businesses know how damaging it can be if staff are unable to get into the office. Irish industry cannot afford to take time out; continuity is essential to ensuring survival."
More than half of those questioned said IT’s main focus now is on improving productivity within the business, rather than simply reducing costs. Virtualisation was cited as the most important technology to embrace in the current climate.
By Sorcha Corcoran