88 per cent of the workforce in India prefer to have the flexibility of working from home: Study

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on July 29, 2020 Published on July 29, 2020

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India could gain $2.25 billion revenue by saving 10% of the time spent on filing and approving claims, the study added.

SAP Concur, a global brand for integrated travel, expense, and invoice management solutions, commissioned a study that has revealed that 88 per cent of the workforce in India prefer to have the flexibility of working from home.

Gearing up the Workforce for remote work

According to the study, 69 per cent of Indian employees believe their productivity has increased while working remotely. This is highest in the APAC region as compared to countries like Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Malaysia, and Thailand.

These figures show positive signs of acceptance of the upcoming ‘new normal’ in the country at a time when the COVID-19 pandemic has forced the companies to implement remote working, the study noted.

Other findings

22 per cent employees in India want their organizations to pay for all expenses needed for a productive working environment at home (also highest amongst all countries in APAC against a consolidated average of just 15 percent).

While 76 per cent employees in India said their organizations provide subsidies or completely pay for a mobile plan, broadband internet and IT peripherals (greater than the APAC average of around 68 percent).

It further mentioned that merely 11 per cent of Indian organizations have embraced end-to-end digital finance and administrative processes.

These manual processes take up significant employee time that can otherwise be used for productive work. Across India, 36 per cent of mid-large sized companies are still using manual processes for submitting business expenses, the report noted.

Asia Insight conducted the survey and used the International Labour Organization (ILO) statistics on output per worker and the number of information workers.

SAP Concur’s study on the survey calculated that saving just 10 per cent of the time spent on filing and approving claims would translate to US$2.25 billion of potential GDP revenue gain for India each year, assuming all the lost hours are diverted to productive work.

While mid to large-sized organizations could save tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars over the same period.

Insights of the study

Elaborating on the insights from the study, Mankiran Chowhan, Managing Director – Indian Subcontinent, SAP Concur, said in the official release: “2020 is proving to be a turning point for companies in terms of managing employee experience and productivity. While employees working remotely are being supported digitally in many areas, there still exists a major gap in digital adoption for crucial yet often overlooked finance and administrative processes.”

He added: “Employees have to devote significant time for menial tasks that could otherwise be used for productive, business value-added work. Bringing in digital transformation for expense claims or invoice processing can have a huge multiplier effect on business and cost control and at the same time provide the operational agility needed for business continuity.”

Finance transformation lagging

The study also found that current expense management systems’ support for modern payment methods is inadequate. More than a third (39 per cent) of respondents said they want their expense management software to integrate with external apps.

This has been asked to enable added functionality like reimbursement of payments made through super apps (umbrella apps containing other apps).

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Published on July 29, 2020
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