More than three in four (77%) executives say that participants who join meetings remotely are at a disadvantage compared to those who join in-person – including 23% who say they are very or extremely disadvantaged – according to a recent survey on remote and hybrid work from workplace analytics firm Vyopta. Conducted by Wakefield Research, the study surveyed 200 U.S. executives at companies of 500 or more employees between July 30 and Aug. 10.
To counteract the perceived gap between in-person and online, executives are taking action to make virtual meetings more effective by, among other things, prompting feedback from remote participants (66%), encouraging remote participants to join using video (65%) and keeping meeting links open until all or almost all participants have left the room (65%). The online chat function during these meetings is only being used sporadically, however, with 43% of companies not having someone monitor the chat for contributions from remote participants.
Beyond meetings, 89% of survey respondents said that confidence in a staff member’s ability to navigate remote collaboration technology is very or extremely important when it comes to making decisions about allowing staff members to continue to work remotely. When it comes to learning how to collaborate with remote workers, 64% of executives say employees at their company receive formal training in this area, while the remaining 36% rely on informal training or offer no training at all.
“This survey has surfaced a trust issue between management and employees – the expectations for remote and hybrid work are not clear and the lack of training on how to manage this new way of working is hurting everyone,” says Vyopta CEO Alfredo Ramirez.