Hong Kong professionals are unsure if their workplaces are future ready, said Hays recently when releasing its ‘Uncovering the DNA of the Future Workplace’ report.
The report, that surveyed more than 9,000 working professionals across Asia in February this year and again in September this year, indicates that only 35% of respondents in Hong Kong could confidently describe their organisation as future-ready.
Hong Kong’s score is the lowest such score in Asia after Japan (26%), said the recruitment firm, adding that a further 47% who were unsure — the highest such score in Asia.
When asked what could help increase the future-readiness of their organisation, the majority of respondents said digitalisation of processes (71%) and openness to change (67%), followed by ‘remote and flexible working options’ (60%), according to the report.
These findings are in line with the regional average, with less than half of total respondents across Asia (37%) being confident that their organisation is future ready, and the majority saying that openness to change (71%) and digitalisation of processes (71%) is what will help their organisation get there.
Gradual digital growth
Hong Kong was one of the first regions in Asia that had to transition to remote and digital ways of working fairly early, said Hays.
However, with digital talent being in shortage for some time now, many organisations have paced their digitalisation gradually and based on necessity, the firm added.
This is evident by the limited change in cloud computing, for example, before (49% and following the pandemic (50%).
The implementation of cloud-based systems will be necessary to make a significant and permanent shift to remote working for the long term, the latter being a top priority for respondents in Hong Kong following the pandemic (87%), survey results indicate.
In addition, 65% of respondents also said cloud computing was important for them when considering a new employer now, as compared to only 15 per cent who thought so pre-Covid, Hays said.
However, overall digital acceleration has been promising, with 58% of respondents now confident that their organisation’s digitalisation journey is sufficiently placed to maintain relevancy for the next three to five years, as compared to only 41% pre-Covid, according to the report.
In addition, 62% of respondents said they were aware/very aware of their organisation’ digitalisation journey now, compared to only 56% who were pre-covid, the report adds.
This is heartening, considering 80% indicating that their organisations’ digitalisation journey was important/very important to them, regardless of their role, said Jack Leung, Regional Director for Hays Hong Kong SAR.
“While many organisations in Hong Kong have seen accelerated digital transformation in the light of the pandemic, that the vast majority of working professionals believe their organisation’s digitalisation journey is very important to them, means that ongoing digitalisation will be a vital part of any organisation looking to stay relevant in the times to come,” he pointed out.
The role of technology
Cloud adoption is a crucial part of making remote working a permanent fixture in the new era of work, which is desired by both employees and employers alike, Leung noted.
A workplace of the future in Hong Kong will need to have strong IT infrastructure and run on cloud-based systems to ensure their employees can work remotely and stay agile in the new era of work, he advised.