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New report: Digital communication etiquette in the era of remote work

New report: Digital communication etiquette in the era of remote work
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New report: Digital communication etiquette in the era of remote work

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Worried about what’s appropriate attire for a Zoom call or whether your chat message is considered rude? You are not alone! We're delighted to announce the release of our Digital Etiquette report surveying over 2800 workers across a wide range of industries to uncover the positives, and the pitfalls, of the sudden shift to remote work. 

The transition to remote working brought about by COVID-19 has meant learning how to collaborate, iterate and offer feedback in new and not always natural ways. 

For many organisations, that transition has involved a degree of scrambling to set up the tools and technologies to make remote communication possible. Board meetings have become zoom calls, feedback sessions have transitioned to Slack messages, and direction from your boss can now come in the form of a Jira ticket. 

This new way of working raises many questions around how we should behave online. As Victoria Turk, author of a book on digital etiquette explains: 

All too often, good manners seem to dissolve in the glare of a smartphone screen or the clicking of a keyboard. This isn’t (usually) out of any malice; the problem is that there’s very little consensus on what constitutes good conduct in the digital world. You might know your way around a dinner party, but how confident are you on the etiquette of WhatsApp groups?

So how are we coping with this new normal? 

Our findings show most organisations have done a good job providing us with tools to maintain productivity and to keep communication flowing, but it’s still the wild west for how we use them.
In fact, 82% of respondents plan to work remotely in the future, but 2 out of 5 (38%) worry daily about how to communicate virtually – particularly the younger generation.

Screenshot 2020 08 25 at 13.57.41

To make matters worse, a staggering 42% of people struggle with the expectation of being 'always on' when working remotely. 

Screenshot 2020 08 25 at 14.56.44

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Here are a few more of our key findings:
  • More communication tools, less training and less productivity.  
    The research highlighted that although 41% of us are actively engaged on over 4 platforms a day, 44% of us have never had any training on how to use them.

    To compound this issue, workers admitted to spending 45 minutes a day searching for information they need to do their jobs. So for every team of 10 employees, organisations effectively lose the productivity of one entire employee a week due to the fact that they have to search for information 

    Screenshot 2020 08 25 at 12.03.01
  • Digital communication angst highest amongst the young. While millennials are often seen as a digital friendly generation, 46% of millennial workers worry daily about how they communicate virtually (vs. just 22% of over 45s)

    Screenshot 2020 08 25 at 13.57.54
  • Workers expect a high level of professionalism, even when at home. 58% of respondents believe taking a conference call from your bed is never acceptable. Additionally, one in ten under 35 year olds considers it utterly unacceptable for pets or children to appear on a video conference.

Clearly the transition to remote work hasn't been plain sailing. Our report highlights that organisations that embrace digital transformation and work in an Agile way will be best placed to cope with what the future has in store. Interested in finding out more?

                                                      Download the report 
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