IT Leaders Underestimate the Power of Enterprise Networks in Employee Experiences
Global IT leaders are failing to fully recognize the vital connection between their enterprise network and employee experiences, according to recent research conducted by HPE Aruba Networking. Despite the growing demand for hybrid working, only 55% of respondents acknowledge the network's strong relevance to employees' ability to perform their jobs and attract and retain talent. The study, which gathered insights from 2,100 IT leaders in 21 countries, explored how these leaders approach the enterprise network and assessed their understanding of its role as a business-boosting asset.
While 44% of IT leaders view the network primarily as a tool for digital transformation, and an additional 33% recognize its role in broader business transformation, there is a missed connection when it comes to delivering employee experiences. Digitization is deemed fundamental for both talent attraction and employees' job performance by 75% of IT leaders.
However, the network's impact in these areas is perceived as the lowest among all the listed business areas. The research also reveals that only 43% of IT leaders believe their network enables staff to work from anywhere, and a mere 34% agree that their network provides seamless connectivity. Additionally, only 29% state that their network facilitates a Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) service.
Sylvia Hooks, CMO of HPE Aruba Networking, highlights the dangerous oversight of not understanding how the network can enhance employee experiences in the prevailing flexible working environment. Hooks emphasizes that the network is indispensable in today's job landscape, extending beyond mere connectivity. She asserts that a seamless, efficient, intelligent, and secure connected experience is essential for organizations embarking on their digital transformation journey.
The research also reveals the areas where the network currently delivers the most return on investment (ROI). IT efficiency, operational efficiency, and cybersecurity, all core components of digital transformation initiatives, are identified as the top three connections between the network and various parts of the business. IT leaders report experiencing the greatest impact in these areas, particularly among those who have invested in the network within the past two years. In contrast, respondents who haven't been able to invest in the network reported a 21% lower positive impact on average across all business areas.
While investment is crucial for maximizing the network's potential, there is untapped opportunity for it to deliver value in additional business-boosting areas. To unlock this potential, it is essential to allocate budget toward the right infrastructure that modernizes all aspects of network operations.
Larry Lunetta, Vice President of Portfolio Solutions Marketing at HPE Aruba Networking, emphasizes that a modern network can enhance employee experiences, attract top talent, and drive impact across all business domains. Lunetta encourages IT leaders to shift their network discussions to focus on business outcomes rather than technical specifications, thus demonstrating the correlation between investment, positive impact, and business value to the C-suite.
The findings of the research highlight the urgent need for global IT leaders to recognize and harness the full extent of the connection between their enterprise network and employee experiences. The network is not just a technical infrastructure, but a strategic asset that holds the key to unlocking productivity, talent attraction, and overall business performance.
Embracing this understanding and investing in the right network infrastructure will pave the way for organizations to thrive in the digital age, create a competitive edge, and build a future-ready workforce.
Edited by Greg Tavarez
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