Siemens Enterprise Communications Survey Highlights Untapped Potential of Teams

Virtual teams use legacy tools and feel frustrated by current collaboration technologies

Oct 24, 2012, 08:00 ET from Siemens Enterprise Communications

RESTON, Va., Oct. 24, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- A study conducted by Siemens Enterprise Communications on the state of today's working business teams found great potential for productivity improvements. Seventy-nine percent of responders report working as part of a virtual team frequently while only 44 percent find their virtual interactions as productive as working face-to-face. The study also found that employees don't have the tools they need to effectively work as part of a virtual team, or find the tools they have frustrating and overwhelming to use, highlighting the opportunity enterprises have to address the untapped potential of their teams to improve business performance.

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The study examined both the tools employees use and their perceptions of the effectiveness of mobile working. A distributed, remote, mobile workforce is a reality for most businesses today, but many have done little more than equip employees with a laptop, desk phone and mobile e-mail. Additionally, employees are often not prepared or trained to interact and build relationships in a largely virtual world.

The study found:

  • 43 percent of users feel frustrated and overwhelmed by their current collaboration tools
  • E-mail (93 percent) and phone (89 percent) are most commonly used by virtual teams and only 54 percent feel that those tools are sufficient
  • 72 percent feel teamwork would be more effective via video, yet only 34 percent use it
  • 75 percent find virtual team members are likely to be distracted
  • Only 8 percent of businesses have processes in place to manage team performance to ensure optimal team output

"This study reinforces what we hear every day from prospects and highlights the real opportunity enterprises have if they can improve the connection and collaboration among virtual teams," said Chris Hummel, Chief Commercial Officer, Siemens Enterprise Communications. "This survey further underpins our recently released amplifyTEAMS campaign. Our vision is to deliver communications solutions that redefine the way employees work. Simple to use across any device - bringing together all channels of communication including social, video, text, transcription, presence, and analytics into a simple, central, intuitive experience that empowers workers the way they work to dramatically improve performance."

Read our blog on amplifyTEAMS

Study Recommendations:

  • Shift focus "from ports to people." The focus for the industry at large, and for customers, must transcend the technology. Today's opportunity is to empower workers and improve the way teams connect, collaborate and deliver.  
  • Align user experience with new work lifestyles. Mobility is now the norm and users expect the tools they use at work to be as simple and elegant as the technology they use in their personal lives. Enterprises should deploy communication solutions that allow users to effortlessly move among media – voice, text, video and social – all with a consistent, intuitive and 'joyful' user experience.
  • Embed unified communications in the way your people work. Communication solutions must be closely integrated with the existing applications, directories, social networks and groupware enterprises already use, and must reduce the complexity and simplify the users' view of content, to provide only the information users need in the format they require.

It is time for enterprises to revisit the untapped potential of team performance – to look at team collaboration as a corporate asset. Siemens Enterprise Communications' amplifyTEAMS vision is aimed at allowing organizations to unleash the untapped potential of their teams, in the context of the new landscape of communications and work lifestyles. It is intended to deliver fully integrated communications solutions that synchronize technologies, harmonize the user experience, weave communications directly into the way businesses operate and empower employees and teams. The result is a more competitive enterprise. One that amplifies collective effort and dramatically improves business performance.

Pillars of the amplifyTEAMS Vision include:

  • Vibrant Conversations: HD experiences that enable all forms of media exchange in real-time.
  • Thought Trails: Never lose a thought by recording and transcribing content that can be served up to support every discussion.
  • Be Seamless: The tools you use feel like second nature, learn from the way you work, are self-aware and adapt to your prevailing situation and needs.
  • Focus: Control your communications world by only interrupting you with what you deem to be critical and suppressing what's not.
  • Go Beyond: Inclusive of outside applications to expand into your work process.

amplifyTEAMS is the vision to unlock your organization's potential. Read the white paper here.

Siemens Enterprise Communications designed and executed the research survey via the Web during September and October 2012 – generating responses from nine countries including North America, Latin America and Western Europe.  Respondent sample size was captured at n=320, generating statistically significant findings at a 95% confidence level within +/- 5% interval, with a 99.7% completion rate among respondents.

Additional Resource
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About Siemens Enterprise Communications
Siemens Enterprise Communications is a leading global provider of unified communications (UC) solutions and network infrastructure for enterprises of all sizes. Leveraging 160 years of experience, we deliver innovation and quality to the world's most successful companies, backed by a world-class services portfolio which includes international multi-vendor managed and outsourcing capabilities.

Our OpenScape communications solutions provide a seamless and efficient collaboration experience – on any device – which amplifies collective effort and dramatically improves business performance.

Together, our global team of UC experts and service professionals set the standards for a rich communications experience that empowers teams to deliver better results.

Siemens Enterprise Communications is a joint venture of The Gores Group and Siemens AG, and includes Enterasys Networks, a provider of network infrastructure and security solutions, creating a complementary and complete enterprise communications solutions portfolio.

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Siemens Enterprise Communications GmbH & Co. KG is a Trademark Licensee of Siemens AG.

SOURCE Siemens Enterprise Communications