Businesses are at risk of missing opportunities to boost productivity and reduce costs by failing to equip manual (or blue collar) workers with new digital technologies, according to a Deloitte survey of more than 2,000 UK workers.
Despite the fact blue collar workers are as connected as white collar workers in their personal lives, only half are ‘light users’ of technology at work, and a significant number do not use any of the technologies that are under review in their workplace. This is compared to 65% of office-based employees who are heavy users of technology in the workplace.
In addition, 31% of blue collar workers said their workplace is ‘not at all advanced’ when it comes to adopting and implementing new technologies, compared to 21% of white collar professionals.
“Blue collar, or manual, workers are as connected as white collar office-based workers in their personal lives, but significantly less so at work,” said James Yearsley, lead services partner at Deloitte. “This suggests that businesses employing large numbers of blue collar workers are failing to make the most of the opportunities technology presents to increase productivity, improve communication and potentially reduce costs.”
Yearsley added that as technology prices are falling, services companies in sectors that traditionally employ large numbers of blue collar workers should now consider how they can use technology in new ways.