Smarter working shortcomings could cost UK businesses £1.6bn


O2 research suggests UK companies could miss out on savings totalling millions of pounds or 6.6 million hours per week

Businesses in the UK are missing out on combined savings of £1.6 billion and 6.6 million hours per week by failing to adopt a smarter working strategy.

This is according to a YouGov survey produced for O2 Enterprise which conducted three surveys from March 19-25. The total sample size was 3,638 – 1,020 senior managers, 542 employees and 2,076 consumers. It was conducted amongst businesses in both the private and public sector.

The report reveals a desire from 46 per cent of employees to break the 9-5 to help them become more efficient and achieve greater career success.

However, O2 said that with just 48 per cent of businesses having integrated digital into their business strategy, they risk being held back.

For businesses that have introduced an ‘Anywhere Office’ policy, greater efficiency was cited as the greatest benefit (40 per cent), while 31 per cent think that using technology such as smartphones and collaboration software at work allows them to save time during the working week.

O2 business director Ben Dowd (pictured) said: “In the wake of the Bank of England’s latest Inflation Report, the productivity of Britain’s businesses is under more scrutiny than ever. But our report shows that it’s not about making the country work harder – it’s about using the technology already at the fingertips of businesses to work smarter.

“Taking this approach doesn’t mean employees should be accessible 24/7; it means giving people the option to work in a way that suits them, in order to drive maximum productivity and – in turn – power economic growth for the UK as a whole.”