1/3 of Scottish firms using ‘increased homeworking’ following Scottish Government guidance change

Gavin Brown, director of Speak With Impact

ALMOST a third of Scottish businesses say increased homeworking will be “permanent” following the First Minister’s announcement that hybrid working would become official guidance.

Nicola Sturgeon said on January 25 that businesses should investigate a “hybrid” approach – working part of the week in the office and part at home – as the country bounces back from Covid. Now the results of a survey which took place between January 24 and February 6, involving more than 1000 Scottish businesses, have revealed the shift in approach.

The UK Government’s Business Insight and Conditions Survey showed 31.3 per cent of Scottish businesses are “using, or intending to use, increased homeworking as a permanent business model going forward”. A similar study in November found that figure to be just 22.8 per cent.

Former MSP and shadow finance secretary Gavin Brown runs Edinburgh-based presentation firm Speak With Impact, which has spent much of lockdown working with businesses across the globe in training them how to adapt to a hybrid and virtual future. He said businesses could use the changing patterns to their advantage, and that there were many benefits to the Scottish economy in a hybrid future.

Gavin Brown, director of Speak With Impact, said:
“It’s been clear for some time that many businesses in Scotland would adopt some degree of hybrid working as a long-term solution. The Scottish Government’s announcement at the end of January that this would become guidance has obviously had an impact.”

“A third of Scottish businesses see this as the future. This means we have to prepare at all levels for the change. That includes improving training when it comes to using virtual applications like Zoom properly, and serious investment in technology. If Scotland embraces this, there’s actually a huge opportunity to make us one of the leading hybrid business centres in the world.”

“That will boost the economy, increase high-quality employment opportunities and open up the world to businesses who previously operated mainly within these shores.”

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