IT leaders want their employees back in the office, and some have even taken action to fire an employee for lackluster remote work productivity, according to a new study.
Specifically, 49% of IT leaders said they want their teams in the office full time once the COVID-19 vaccine is widespread, according to the .Tech Domains IT Leader Survey.
The survey, which polled 350 U.S.-based IT leaders in CIO- and CTO-level positions, indicates that IT leaders feel that remote work is causing a digital divide between remote workers and on-site workers despite the tech industry’s best efforts to provide collaboration solutions that aim to bridge that gap.
The results also indicate that remote work may not be providing the productivity boost that we all thought it would, as 47% of survey respondents said they have had to fire an employee due to poor performance and productivity while working from home.
“With the performance of their team having much greater implications for their organizations, it appears that IT leaders aren’t accepting of the lag that remote environments are creating for some employees,” reads a blog summarizing the results.
“To combat this, the vast majority plan to take a proactive stance on monitoring their distributed workforce more closely in 2021.”
To do that, 85% of IT leaders surveyed said they plan to more closely track employee productivity and performance when they work remotely in 2021.
Further, 42% of IT leaders said their team is less engaged since the onset of COVID-19 and remote work, and only 16% say engagement is at a similar level to what it was before the pandemic.
To increase that engagement, IT leaders say they’re planning to increase the diversity of their IT teams in 2021.
IT leaders are also taking it upon themselves to improve their management skills, especially for remote work situations, as 45% said the pandemic has made them realize they need to improve how they communicate with their team.
As we learn valuable lessons from nearly a year of remote work, IT leaders will need to take a more human-centered approach and connect with their employees on a different level as the IT department remains evermore critical to the organization’s success.