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  • More office workers prefer ‘smart’ mobile call and data bundles over ‘dumb’ desk phones
  • 24% say their employer doesn’t provide right tech tools for today’s working environment
  • WhatsApp and WeChat are now used by 39% of all workers without employer or IT oversight

London, 2017 – UK office workers are calling for an end to exclusively desk-bound communications technology, in particular ‘dumb’ desk phones that can only make calls, according to research by Avaya, the global leader in delivering superior customer experiences.

Avaya is releasing the results of this comprehensive global survey at UC EXPO, Europe’s largest Unified Communications and Collaboration event, where it is a keynote participant.

The Avaya survey, conducted with research company YouGov, asked more than 3,000 office employees in the UK and around the world if they felt equipped to work and collaborate effectively. The findings reveal a pressing demand for more mobile, virtual and cloud-based technologies and represent a direct appeal to employers to invest in more suitable UC technology. Almost a quarter (24%i) of office workers worldwide say their boss doesn’t provide them with the right tools.

WhatsApp and WeChat groups are now used by an average of (39%) of all employees for work purposes without the knowledge of IT, administrative or management teams, exposing companies to security risks.

Traditional technology, like the call-only desktop handset, is now less significant than mobile and cloud-based tools, according to office workers, who consider data packages (37%) for their mobile to be more important that traditional phone and email access (26%). Employees say they also want independent access to work emails from their smart phones (35%) and remote access to file servers and databases from their mobiles or other devices outside the company network (34%).

More than a third of workers (37%ii) spend an average of eight working days away from their desks during a typical month, meaning they rely less on traditional hardware and more on a patchwork of mobile and cloud-based collaboration software to keep up with their busy schedules.

Ioan MacRae, UK Managing Director at Avaya, says: “Businesses, especially mid-sized companies, must recognize that workers in every field are becoming more nomadic. Mobility and the internet of things are key contributing factors to a macrotrend in how we all live and communicate. Left to their own devices, employees will use whatever tools they have in their pockets so they can work and stay in touch easily.

“Companies that fail to address this trend have no visibility into how their employees are communicating and sharing data. But if you set up a controllable environment with a unified cloud-based service, you can protect yourself from data breaches and cyber attacks. The UC EXPO is a great opportunity for us to discuss these issues with companies of all sizes, to help them build robust and effective cloud communication services. Our research shows that communications technology needs to be just as versatile and scalable as our day-to-day jobs.”

Two in five employees (38%) say they want a joined-up IT service from their employer with collaboration tools built into existing enterprise applications, like a click-to-call through email or an option to join conference calls through their calendars.

In addition to this research, Avaya is a keynote speaker and presenting a panel entitled ‘The Future of UC’ while at UC EXPO, the largest Unified Communications and Collaboration event, in Europe on 17-18th May 2017.

About the data

Avaya, in association with YouGov, polled 3,050 professionals in six markets (23rd - 30th January 2017), covering Australia, France, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom. The respondents were split 40:60 per cent female and male. 70 per cent were between the ages of 21 and 49, and 30 per cent were older than 50.

The survey sought to gather data from employees on the level of technology support they receive from their employers, respondents were only those who were employed full-time or part time. Students, freelancers, and those currently unemployed were not included. Entrepreneurs were also left out as the findings would then have higher instances of web-based communication and collaboration tools, which are typically not allowed within corporate IT systems.

Result tables

Q7. Which of the following collaboration tools are you able to access independently (without having to request them from your IT department, admin or management)? (Selecting all that apply.)



Email on mobile


Internal calls & voice mail


WhatsApp or WeChat Groups


Internal desktop/laptop-based chat system


Calendar access on mobile


Calling and data package on mobile phone


Remote access to file servers and databases (from mobile or outside the network)


Desktop video conferencing


Third-party conference calling solution (Skype for Business, Scopia, Webex, etc.)


Video conference room/suite


Virtual assistant for IT or role-based support


None of these


Q8. Which of the following collaboration or communication tools would you like to have independent access to (without having to request them from your IT department, admin or management)? (Selecting all that apply.)



Calling and data package on mobile phone


Email on mobile


Remote access to file servers and databases (from mobile or outside the network)


Internal calls & voice mail


Internal chat


Calendar access on mobile


Third-party conference calling solution (Skype for Business, Scopia, Webex, etc.)


Desktop video conferencing


Virtual assistant for IT or role-based support


Video conference room/suite


None of these


Don't know


Q10. To me, a technology-assisted work environment…



Can help you be more productive


Is more eco-friendly than travelling for meetings


Would build communication and collaboration abilities into existing enterprise apps (click-to-call through email; join conference call through calendar, etc.)


Democratizes the corporate structure by making information accessible to all


Gives more power to IT/Admin than to the core professionals


Can cause more harm than good due to security issues


Don't know


About Avaya

Avaya enables the mission critical, real-time communication applications of the world’s most important operations. As the global leader in delivering superior communications experiences, Avaya provides the most complete portfolio of software and services for contact center and unified communications with integrated, secure networking— offered on premises, in the cloud, or a hybrid. Today’s digital world requires some form of communications enablement, and no other company is better positioned to do this than Avaya. For more information, please visit

i23.77 per cent say their employer doesn’t provide them with the right technology tools to communicate and collaborate most effectively.

ii36.95 per cent of workers say they are away from their desks less than 40 per cent of the time a month.

Certain statements contained in this press release may be forward-looking statements. These statements may be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "anticipate," "believe," "continue," "could," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "may," "might," "plan," "potential," "predict," "should" or "will" or other similar terminology.  We have based these forward-looking statements on our current expectations, assumptions, estimates and projections. While we believe these are reasonable, such forward looking statements involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond our control. These and other important factors may cause our actual results to differ materially from any future results expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. For a list and description of such risks and uncertainties, please refer to Avaya's filings with the SEC that are available at Avaya disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements


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