Outdated workplace tech can hurt retention
- Outdated technology is frustrating digital employees, making them less productive and pushing them to leave, according to a new global study by Unisys Corporation.
- According to the New Digital Workplace Divide, more than half of digital workers at "technology laggard" organizations expressed frustration with their employer, as compared to only 6% of workers at "technology leader" organizations — a difference of 750%, Unisys said. And that level of frustration directly correlates with the threat of attrition, according to the study: Workers at technology laggards were 450% more likely to want to leave to go work elsewhere, as compared to their counterparts at technology leaders.
- Devices cause the most problems for workers, with 45% complaining that outdated versions keep them from being productive. Unisys says the productivity losses stemming from outdated technology can be staggering. Citing a 2017 Gallup poll, the company says disengaged employees cost employers $483 billion to $605 billion each year.
While macro technology changes such as cloud migration may seem like the first priority for a company, advancing technology at the individual level can be just as important.
The Unisys study isn't the first to find a correlation between up-to-date tech and employee engagement. More than half of employers in a recent Harvard Business Review Analytic Services report said that their technology offerings are a factor in candidates' decisions to work for them and that outdated technology hampers their ability to compete for talent.
With the consumerization of office technology, workers whose technology tools at home surpass those of their employer are bound to feel frustrated at work. Employees who use their own devices at work create cybersecurity risks for organizations by connecting potentially vulnerable devices to corporate networks with a wealth of data.
Outdated tech can carry similar risks. Software updates, for example, often install critical patches to security vulnerabilities, and if an employee is working on a device that either doesn't have the latest software or is too old to support it, one lucky hacker can exploit the hole and wreak havoc in a corporate system.
Technology is behind nearly every employment function, including team collaboration, hiring and recruiting, information management, training and self-service benefits access. When workers feel like they can't complete these basic tasks, it should be no surprise that they become flight risks.