Rise of ‘iWorkers’ to keep up with technology-led change in business

The proportion of 'intelligent workers' who have constant access to business information is expected to rise in the next five years, new research suggests.

A study compiled by technology company Ricoh finds that greater sharing of information is likely to lead to more connected employees.

It finds a trend of what it describes as ‘iWorkers’, or ‘intelligent workers’, which are employees who have 24/7 access to all necessary information to meet the needs of the business and its clients.

Ricoh’s study predicts that while only 4 per cent of businesses describe the majority of staff as ‘iWorkers’, this figure will rise to 37 per cent by 2018.

Phil Keoghan, CEO of Ricoh UK, comments, ‘The population of ‘iWorkers’ is forecast to rise significantly. The question is, are businesses ready?

‘Business leaders are more aware than ever before of the need to further optimise the way they use technology and eliminate the information silos occurring across the business. There is an urgency to review and change traditional ways of working and keep up with technology-led change, which will continue to bring new challenges.’

Ricoh suggests that there are a ‘number of challenges’ to overcome before more businesses can consider staff to be ‘iWorkers’, such as the need to review existing processes so that employees can access business critical information easier. Its new study finds that 70 per cent believe that the inability to access documents from a mobile device is holding business back, while two thirds reveal that unsuitable search functions prevent staff from finding information needed.

‘Now is time for organisations across the country to optimise critical business and document processes to prepare more effectively for the future,’ Keoghan adds.

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter was the Editor for GrowthBusiness.co.uk from 2012 to 2014, before moving on to Caspian Media Ltd to be Editor of Real Business.

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