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A third of UK businesses struggle to transition to remote working

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by Startacus Admin

remote working business struggles
New YouGov research commissioned by SAP Concur reveals that whilst a healthy 68% of businesses found the transition to remote working easy, a significant third of businesses (32%) found it difficult or very difficult. 

The global sweep of COVID-19 has meant a fundamental shift for businesses; travel restrictions and mandated social distancing have meant, in a short space of time, huge swathes of the UK economy have restructured to a remote working setup. New YouGov research commissioned by the SAP Concur team reveals that whilst a healthy 68% of businesses found this transition easy, a significant third of businesses (32%) found it difficult or very difficult. 

In particular, companies cited IT, infrastructure and communications as the biggest problems during the shift, with difficulties including: 

  • "making sure staff had right equipment at home that enabled secure home working"
  • "IT issues ensuring that relevant programmes were compatible and secure”
  • "authorising invoices without contact"
  • “trying to get all staff to use and be trained on new software"

remote working business strugglesIn order to make the remote working change, 14% of businesses implemented new financial technologies after UK lockdown began. Interestingly, again a third (32%) of those organisations found implementation difficult or very difficult. 

What’s more, 11% implemented some automation of financial processes. Specifically examining automation, SMBs had very little plans to implement automation with nearly half (47%) saying they wouldn’t, in comparison, only 23% of enterprises had ruled it out. This is despite enterprises leading the way in already having automation in place (47%) in comparison to SMBs (29%). 

This could indicate smaller businesses lack flexibility in their current set up, are unsure of its importance, or have not been properly advised on how to undertake this change.

Enterprises (47%) were also far more likely than SMBs (29%) to already have automation in place, suggesting SMBs perhaps feel these tools are suited to larger companies.

Ryan Demaray, Managing Director SMB EMEA at SAP Concur commented: 

“What this shows is there's work to be done with so many smaller businesses assuming technology like SAP Concur isn’t for them, when in reality cloud computing has made enterprise grade software available to every customer. Modern solutions are cloud-based and heavily scalable, so we need to rally behind the SMB community and make it apparent that they absolutely can put in place enterprise-grade solutions in a way that fits their size and budget.”

Interested in this article? You might also want to read up on ten80, the platform that enables SAP clients to connect with SAP experts globally...


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Published on: 3rd June 2020

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