Some UK businesses reportedly lack optimisation needed for long-term remote work

Remote work - SaaS business SAP Concur urges finance, IT leaders to step up to the plate in ensuring remote workers’ day-to-day tasks can be most effectively carried out

LONDON, ENGLAND — Although companies around the world are forging ahead with the shift to remote work, with countless opting to embrace the new working method brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, a recent survey found a surprising number of modern businesses are not optimised to support remote work.

SaaS business SAP Concur collaborated with Oxford Economics on the study, which surveyed 352 finance and IT decision-makers at international companies with under 1,000 employees.

The study included a wide variety of industries and primarily aimed to “gain more insight into the changing nature of work and employee expectations” two years into the global pandemic.

Of the 51 responses from the United Kingdom, a large majority admitted to lacking in areas that would support a long-term adoption of remote working, like stronger cybersecurity.

“Process effectiveness is low across the board, partly due to optimisation challenges,” the SAP Concur report found.

“Only 16 percent of UK leaders say they are effective at cybersecurity (vs. 13 percent total); 25 percent claim to be effective at T&E (travel and expenses) policy compliance (vs. 23 percent total).”

Optimisation matters more than ever

But the poor scores in optimisation for remote work did not appear to ruffle too many feathers among UK respondents, as only a minority said they experienced additional difficulties as a result.

SAP Concur noted, “Just over four in 10 (43 percent) say managing travel and expense reports has become challenging since the pandemic (vs. 39 percent total), and 22 percent say the same about compliance (vs. 20 percent).”

While this could suggest some business leaders may not be taking optimisation seriously, SAP Concur nonetheless stressed its necessity in an age where remote work is increasingly becoming the norm.

The sense of urgency was also addressed by Remote Worker Co-founder Joseph Boll, who asserted, “Remote work is here to stay, and it is up to employers to stay on the cutting-edge or fall behind.

“Worldwide studies have already shown businesses lose out on hiring the best talent when they shy away from flexible working, but businesses also stand to lose if they fail to ensure home workers are equipped to perform to the best of their ability.”

SAP Concur added, “To prepare for a future where some level of flexible work is permanent, finance and IT leaders need to ensure their processes can be effectively performed no matter where an employee is located.”

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SAP concur study, “Empowering your people: How finance and IT leaders can support flexible working” -

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