Lockdown has undoubtedly changed the way we work from in person pitches to Zoom calls but this hasn’t impacted productivity, with the majority of marketers (64%) noting that they have been as productive, if not more so, working from home.
Of the 500 UK brand marketers answering the fourth round of an exclusive survey conducted by Marketing Week and its sister title Econsultancy, nearly 59% also agree that remote working inevitably encroaches on work/life balance, despite the rise in productivity, with 61% admitting they work more hours when working from home.
Perhaps surprisingly given this, the majority of people (66%) don’t agree with the statement that they can’t wait to get back to the office. It will be good news then that that nearly half believe that even if Covid-19 is over remote working will be very common (48%) or somewhat common (35%).
The majority of marketers have not found remote working more challenging except when it comes to creative collaboration, With nearly half (45.5%) citing this as more challenging compared to the 31% who said no change and 13.4% who found it easier.
In contrast, 53% found meetings were more productive online.
Despite these changes, most found not much difference between being at home and working in the office, with campaign coordination (50%), vendor and contract management (50%), communication with senior staff (38.5%) and accessing databases (67%) all experiencing the same levels of ease.
Even so, marketers would like to see more resources on both working from home and upskilling. Some 51% note they haven’t received extra resources on best practice, with just 23% offered it and 10.6% saying it is planned.
This is the same for virtual training (43.8%, with 35.2% offering it) and training about working remotely (41.3%).
This appears to be a missed opportunity given that 33% think it is critical to rapidly train the workforce to be effective at working remotely, while 41% deem it important.
This is the same when it comes to upskilling staff, with 55% thinking it is important and 26% critical to upskill workforces through virtual training and similarly for providing effective on-demand learning resources for remote workers (53% say it is important).
Marketers are split 47%/53% on whether their organisation has a clear theory on how its sector is going to evolve post-lockdown.
However, 84% do think lockdown has emphasised the importance of digital transformation. A further 82% have found new ways of working they believe might help in the future, including new processes (65%), and product and service innovations (53%).