The study from Ricoh Europe found that one in five (22%) believe their company has lost revenue during the pandemic as a direct result of poor customer experience, depsite staff working longer hours than when the pandemic started.
Nearly a third (31%) say they don’t have enough time to focus on work that delivers the most value to their company, while the proportion of workers feeling the pressure to be online outside of business hours has increased by 38% since last April.
What’s more, time spent on admin and internal communications is double the amount of time they spend on work that will benefit and deliver a great experience to their customers (16%), and almost half (48%) of respondents admit to being unproductive due to admin-heavy days.
Enterprises have invested in platforms to try help ease the workload, but two in five employees (39%) say the new tools have actually increased the amount of work they have to do.
Employees feel that automation could help them improve customer experience and deliver results for their organisation, and half (49%) believe they would deliver more value to customers if they were supported by tools that automate administrative tasks.
In addition, 58% of surveyed staff members believe their company could boost productivity and profitability if they introduced new technologies that improve customer engagement.
Sub-standard tech has eroded company culture — Ricoh Europe
“In a crowded and competitive marketplace, customer experience can quite literally make or break a company,” said David Mills, CEO of Ricoh Europe.
“Internal processes and administration are important, but businesses can’t lose sight of why they exist in the first place – to deliver a product or service to the market. Employers need to empower their teams to work smarter so they can focus on delivering higher-value work.
“Technology has a critical role to play in helping companies do this. What’s interesting about this research is that the appetite for automation amongst the workforce is increasing – this is a stark contrast to just a few years ago when AI and automation was greeted with fear and scepticism.
“However, it’s not as simple as buying into the first platform or automation solution that comes your way. Any investment must be tailored to an organisation’s needs and support employees where they need it most.”
Ricoh Europe polled 952 European office workers, at firms with more than 1,000 employees.