Nearly half of workers will quit their job if their workplace technology is not up to scratch

If tech is a barrier to your ability to do a good job, would you leave? A new survey uncovers how our attitudes have changed in 2020.
Written by Eileen Brown, Contributor

Work management company Workfront's 7th Annual State of Work report has revealed that despite economic uncertainty and a fiercely competitive job market, 49% of the US workforce would leave their job due to frustrations with technology.

Workfront, an Adobe Company, carried out two surveys of 1,000 US respondents. It partnered with the Center for generational Kineticks to understand how Millennials aged 23-43, and Generation X -- aged 44-52 approached work differently.

The first survey was prior to the lockdown restrictions in February 2020, and the second was nine months later during November and December 2020. This has captured the impact of the pandemic on the digital workforce.

The study found a significant increase in the number of digital workers who say technology is "very important" in both collaborating (+10 points) and doing their best work (+9 points).

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, almost a quarter (22%) of workers say they had already quit a job because workplace tech made their jobs harder.

The second survey showed that almost a third of workers (32%) say they have said goodbye to an employer whose tech was a barrier to their ability to do good work.

Almost half (49%) of US workers say they are likely to leave their current job if they're unhappy or frustrated with the technology they use at work.

However, the number of digital workers who reported applying for a job because they heard a company's employees use great technology increased by 7 points.

The rate at which Gen Xers say they have quit a job due to bad technology increased by 13 points over pre-COVID-19 measures. Millennials reported an increase of 7 points.

Workers who say they feel very invested or invested in their jobs rose from a relative high of 79% in the first study, to 81% in the second study. Workers now rely more on technology to foster creativity and innovation (+9 points) and develop new ideas (+8 points) than before the pandemic.

Due to the nature of remote work, employees are suffering significantly less (-10 points) from feeling micromanaged than when they were in the office

On the other hand, they say it is harder to ensure their work is supporting organizational priorities due to communication (+2 points) and not being given the freedom to decide how to best support company goals (+7 points).

It seems that as the pandemic progressed throughout 2020, employees were working by very different rules at home which evolved throughout the year.

Employees rely on technology for all work activity so if technology impacts on employee performance instead of elevating it, it is not surprising that an employee will choose to work elsewhere. Remote work has exposed the limits of outdated technologies, and workers are not putting up with it.

Managers need to enable their employees to do their jobs effectively – or deal with the increase in attrition as workers go elsewhere.

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