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Employees Ready to Embrace AI to improve Work/Life Balance, Fujitsu Survey Reveals
- With employees working longer hours despite falling productivity levels, most people now see Artificial Intelligence as a way to improve workplace output
- Almost half of employees believe their current workplace does not have a positive impact on the recruitment and retention of people with core skills
- Workers feel that many applications and services fail to support them, and are too overwhelmed by data to easily find the information they require
However, as the competition for skilled workers intensifies, today’s workplaces are failing to live up to the expectations of their workforce. In fact, almost half of all employees (46 percent) believe that their current workplace does not have a positive impact on the recruitment and retention of people with core skills.
Fujitsu’s new study, conducted by research firm Pierre Audoin Consultants
(PAC), looked at the challenges that businesses are experiencing as they evolve, from the perspective of their workforce. Findings highlight that not all businesses have the right culture, environment policies and technology to enable their employees to be effective, or to attract talent in the future.
Workers want support from AI, a good work/life balance and increased productivity
Although employees feel they are working as hard (45 percent) or harder (47 percent) than two years ago, more than 40 percent of respondents think their actual productivity has stalled or declined. This is potentially why most professionals surveyed now consider AI to be a positive force – as they recognize how it helps improve workplace productivity. Today, more than 80 percent of participants believe that AI, experienced via digital virtual assistants or personalized and adaptive user experiences, will have a positive effect on their daily working lives. And it isn’t just the digital native employees who are ready to embrace AI, with this positive outlook shared by both entry-level and more experienced workers.
As employees find themselves working longer hours, they are looking for ways to achieve balance between work and personal lives. This can be accomplished by flexible working hours and practices, with more than half (53 percent) considering this to be “very important” in terms of enhancing productivity. However, more than a third (35 percent) rate their employer’s ability to support a good work/life balance as only adequate or poor. A stimulating and healthy working environment was a close second at 49 percent, with access to the right productivity tools also named by 40 percent as the most important factors in their effectiveness.
Robin Lipscomb, Head of Strategy for Digital Technology Services at Fujitsu EMEIA, says: “The consumerization of IT across the enterprise is blurring the lines between the corporate world and our personal lives. By recognizing this, putting people first and equipping them with the right tools to do their jobs, we will see work and private lives starting to blend together more seamlessly. We are focused on helping realize business outcomes while driving a wider impact on society, and delivering tangible value for customers.”
Nick Mayes, research lead and Principal Analyst at PAC, comments: “The survey findings show that many of today’s workplaces and working practices still prevent employees from maximizing their productivity. Businesses must focus on effective practices by getting their data and processes in order and making it easier for employees to access the information they need, when and where they need it. With these fundamentals and the right technology in place, the possibilities for enhancing productivity are endless, from providing adaptive experiences based on context and location, to intelligent assistance and a highly-personalized service for each individual. And these are key factors that help ensure the retention of top talent, in a highly competitive market.”
In the near future, Fujitsu expects workers to place a greater emphasis on the ability to effectively blend personal and work life. As AI, machine learning and robotic process automation technologies become more widely adopted, people will expect basic processes from their employers, such as onboarding activities and seamless service request automation. Enterprises that succeed in delivering this balance will ultimately be will be able to address the challenges of productivity and will win the war for talent, by attracting and retaining skilled employees. With its human centric approach, Fujitsu is well placed to provide the services, eco-systems and technologies required for the modern, personal and flexible workplace.
Notes to editors
The study is based on an online survey of employees at large and medium-sized business in Belgium, France, Germany, Nordics, Spain, UK and Ireland, undertaken by PAC during September and October 2018. The full findings can be downloaded from the study
Fujitsu is the leading Japanese information and communication technology (ICT) company, offering a full range of technology products, solutions, and services. Approximately 140,000 Fujitsu people support customers in more than 100 countries. We use our experience and the power of ICT to shape the future of society with our customers. Fujitsu Limited (TSE: 6702) reported consolidated revenues of 4.1 trillion yen (US $39 billion) for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2018. For more information, please see http://www.fujitsu.com.
About Fujitsu UK and Ireland
Fujitsu UK & Ireland employs over 9,000 people. We promote a Human Centric Intelligent Society, in which innovation is driven by the integration of people, information and infrastructure. We are committed to Digital Co-creation, blending business expertise with digital technology and creating new value with ecosystem partners and customers. We enable our customers to digitally transform with connected technology services, focused on Artificial Intelligence, the Internet of Things, and Cloud - all underpinned by Security. Our customers cover both the public and private sectors, including retail, financial services, transport, manufacturing, government and defence. For more information please see http://uk.fujitsu.com
Date: 05 December, 2018