Recent findings from Expereo, a global CIO survey, indicate that a significant portion of large enterprises are encountering challenges in hiring employees critical for their expansion plans. This has led to one-third of these organisations employing individuals they have never met in person.

The survey interviewed over 650 CIOs from across Europe, the United States, and the Asia-Pacific region, highlighting the acute skills shortage impacting global growth prospects.


Challenges in Sourcing Talent

The pursuit of highly skilled knowledge workers is a competitive one, with CIOs identifying the retention of skills and resources (35%) as one of the top three barriers to achieving global growth. This challenge stands alongside navigating complex security environments and dealing with intricate physical and geo-political infrastructures. Specifically, 40% of CIOs report difficulties in recruiting the right blend of business and technology skills.

The search for expertise in areas such as cyber security, artificial intelligence/machine learning, and data analytics is particularly strenuous, with these skill sets being the hardest to source. Moreover, 31% of CIOs find it challenging to find the right competencies within governance and regulatory compliance.
Benefits of Hybrid and Remote Policies

Despite these challenges, the adoption of flexible working policies is proving beneficial. Notably, 43% of CIOs acknowledge that such policies have facilitated access to a broader geographical talent pool. As a result, many teams now comprise members from various countries and markets. This flexibility is not only a strategic advantage but also a key factor in talent retention and acquisition, with 48% of CIOs viewing it as pivotal.

The research further reveals that for 72% of businesses, working three days or less in the office has become standard practice. This shift towards hybrid and remote working models is partly attributed to the rising cost of living, with 44% of CIOs considering it a driving force.
The New Working Norm and Productivity Concerns

However, the trend towards increased remote working is not without its issues. A third of CIOs anticipate a rise in the number of days employees are expected to work from the office, with productivity concerns and home connectivity issues cited as significant factors.

The Connectivity Compromise

The expansion of remote working has increased the pressure on IT teams to ensure seamless application performance and round-the-clock support across different locations and time zones. Ben Elms, Chief Revenue Officer at Expereo, emphasises the importance of adapting network dynamics to meet the connectivity needs of a dispersed workforce. He asserts that hybrid working hinges on the ability to stay connected and maintain interactions with colleagues and customers globally.

Elms concludes by highlighting the necessity for technology that fosters connectivity and collaboration, thereby enabling the remote work paradigm to thrive.

This research illustrates the evolving landscape of employment and the strategic approaches global enterprises are taking to address the challenges of a remote workforce. As businesses continue to adapt, the future of work seems to be increasingly flexible, diverse, and globally interconnected.