95% of North American CIOs report remote work issues during the pandemic lockdown, according to Hitachi ID and Pulse survey

Dawn Mallyon, VP Marketing, Hitachi ID

Nearly all CIO respondents—95%—reported that their IT organizations have been bogged down by inefficiencies since the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated a shift to a remote workforce, according to a new survey. Conducted by Hitachi ID Systems and Pulse, the online, cross-industry survey uncovered the biggest roadblocks IT teams have encountered while working from home.

Employee password lockouts were reported to be the top challenge, with 71% of respondents stating it has negatively impacted productivity. The second most common challenge, with 55% of responses, was employee inability to access on-premise applications to complete their work. Some 43% of respondents experienced issues with multi-factor authentication.

“COVID-19 led to an unprecedented remote work transformation with challenges in productivity and security at scale that had never been anticipated,” says Kevin Nix, Chief Executive Officer, Hitachi ID Systems. “As top senior executives shore up their identity and access management (IAM) frameworks, companies like ours can quickly offer assessments and recommendations to aid with those efforts.”

Most respondents—77%—claimed they will or have already reduced their IT budgets, but many are in agreement about where that limited budget will go. Some 74% are prioritizing initiatives that improve operational efficiency and 40% are maintaining their spend on IAM.

Meanwhile, organizations might stick with on-premise solutions even after experiencing issues with them during the pandemic lockdown. While more than half of respondents had issues with employees accessing on-premise applications, 52% also said that on-premise solutions were more agile during the crisis than SaaS or cloud-based solutions.

Had CIOs been given the opportunity to prepare their IT teams for the rapid shift to a work-from-home population, 67% would have added collaboration tools and 59% would have added security training to enable a smoother transition.

Hitachi ID and Pulse surveyed 100 North American C-suite executives at enterprise, mid-sized, and small companies in May 2020. Get a full copy of the report.