The New Role of IT: Promoting Employee Collaboration and Productivity
July 21, 2022
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Pre-pandemic, only 16% of IT decision makers would say IT was largely responsible for the workplace. But in the next five years, 45% expect their departments to be largely responsible, according to a new research report, IT in the Evolving Workplace, from Nexthink.

The report highlights that 94% of IT professionals are seeing the roles and responsibilities of their job moving away from simply provisioning IT equipment to focus more on providing solutions which promote employee collaboration and productivity.

90% have received additional training from their organization to support them in their role's evolution since the shift to remote work in the beginning of 2020, and 95% have received access to additional tools or software.

"Hybrid or remote working has cast enterprise IT into the role of supporting digital work experiences and even influencing the side effects of remote work, including isolation, disengagement and lack of energy" said Yassine Zaied, Chief Strategy Officer for Nexthink. "As a result, IT's role is changing from a problem fixer to an architect of the workplace. While this shift was accelerated due to the necessary remote work caused by the pandemic, the data shows us IT has been heading in this direction for years. We're on the cusp of a new era for how enterprises consider digital work and who supports it."

Additional highlights from the report on the shifting roles and responsibilities of IT include:

IT's evolving role

IT's role has been evolving for years — 99% of respondents have seen new tasks come into their role in the past five years, including developing working from home practices and training, supporting employee communication and developing sustainability projects and policies.

More recognition for IT

Despite changes, IT professionals are looking for more recognition in their new roles — 99% report that there are things that they could have or do which would help them excel as an IT professional in a remote/hybrid working world — more than half (57%) would like recognition of their roles and responsibilities, followed by additional tools/software (55%), better leadership/guidance (53%) and additional time for certain tasks (47%).

HR under IT

Traditionally HR areas are coming under the purview of IT. While 63% of IT professionals consider access to effective and appropriate technology to be largely the IT department's responsibility, notable proportions also consider IT to be responsible in other more traditionally HR-focused areas. For example, 29% believe that IT are largely responsible for effective employee collaboration and 27% believe they are largely responsible for employee productivity.

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