A study by SAP Concur suggests that work from home is no more a new normal as employees, especially in India as 69 percent of them believe that their productivity has increased while working remotely. 88 percent of the Indian workforce revealed that they prefer to have the flexibility of working from home.
However, to support employees while they work from home, according to the study, merely 11 percent of Indian organizations have embraced end-to-end digital finance and administrative processes. These manual processes take up significant employee time that can otherwise be used for productive work. Across India, 36 percent of mid-large sized companies are still using manual processes for submitting business expenses.
Asia Insight, which conducted the survey, used International Labour Organization (ILO) statistics on output per worker and the number of information workers, and the study’s results, to calculate and derive that saving just 10 percent of the time spent on filing and approving claims would translate to US$2.25 billion of potential GDP revenue gain for India each year, assuming all the lost hours are diverted to productive work. Mid to large-sized organizations could save tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars over the same period.
Elaborating on the insights from the study, Mankiran Chowhan, Managing Director – Indian Subcontinent, SAP Concur, said, “2020 is proving to be a turning point for companies in terms of managing employee experience and productivity. While employees working remotely are being supported digitally in many areas, there still exists a major gap in digital adoption for crucial yet often overlooked finance and administrative processes. Owing to this, employees have to devote significant time for menial tasks that could otherwise be used for productive, business value-added work. Bringing in digital transformation for expense claims or invoice processing can have a huge multiplier effect on business and cost control and at the same time provide the operational agility needed for business continuity.”
Delving deeper into the study, some of the key findings pertaining to remote working were:
Remote work will be the default mode of work for many organizations in the foreseeable future.
- 76 percent employees in India said their organizations provide subsidies or completely pay for mobile plan, broadband internet and IT peripherals (greater than the APAC average of around 68 percent),
- 22 percent employees in India want their organizations to pay for all expenses needed for a productive working environment at home (also highest amongst all countries in APAC against a consolidated average of just 15 percent).
- Survey respondents want their employers to enable easy remote claims and travel management, improve collaboration, and provide better IT equipment and services.
While the figures show positive signs of large scale acceptance of the upcoming ‘new normal’ in the country, organizations need to gear up to support employees and their performance in the virtual work environment.