Collaboration App Patterns Suggest Generational Frictions

Millennials more likely to use unapproved apps

Collaboration App Patterns Suggest Generational Frictions

Leading management software and service provider for modern meeting experience, Unify Square recently revealed some exciting research in its latest report., The company partnered with Osterman Research to produce a document about the changing nature of meetings and collaboration in the age of the multi-generational workforce.

The report examines various transformational elements that are impacting the way that people work together today, including the rise of UC and workstream collaboration tools. Interestingly, according to the study, there are significant generational differences in the way that people use these tools to connect and collaborate.

Issues Between End Users and IT

The survey identified various alignment issues between today’s end-users and IT admins. For instance, while IT feels that 44% of users are thrilled with the apps, they have access to each day, and 47% are mostly satisfied, the users themselves revealed satisfaction rates of 51% and 34% respectively.

Unify Square’s study also found that end users rely on different sets of apps than the official tools deployed by IT teams. 54% reported using unapproved apps in total, while 83% of IT decision-makers believe that their employees are using sanctioned tech.

Of the generations most likely to ignore the guidelines set by IT teams, millennials ranked the highest. Millennials were 1.5 times more likely to use unsanctioned apps to communicate and collaborate than other generations. 28% of millennials in total said they use unapproved apps between 2 and 4 times per week. Another 71% claimed to use unsanctioned apps a few times a year.

This is compared to only 45% of Gen X employees using unsanctioned app through the year, and 41% of baby boomers taking the same approach.

What Do End-Users Really Want?

Scott Gode

Scott Gode

Unify Square’s survey also found that many millennials are still reliant on free collaboration apps like Workplace by Facebook and Slack, rather than using the high-security offerings available from Microsoft, Google, and Cisco. 20.8% of millennials are using Slack, and another 19.6% claim to use Zoom for everyday collaboration.

While recent data in the collaboration industry suggests that Microsoft Teams is pushing ahead of Slack in subscriber growth rates, Unify Square indicates that there’s still some inconsistency in the apps that employers buy for their workforce, and the tools they use. Scott Gode, the Chief Product Marketing Officer of Unify Square, said that the fact that most employees are using multiple UC and WSC apps each day highlights a problem for IT teams. What’s worse, many of the apps that organisations are using aren’t sanctioned by their employers.

Unify Square believes that companies need a better way of governing and managing apps in the workforce. What’s more, business leaders also need a way to make sure that their teams are getting the most value out of the apps they have access to, so they don’t need to turn to unsanctioned options.

Surprisingly, the Unify Square study results also found that email continues to be a very popular tool for communication and collaboration in all of the age groups that took part. 47% of respondents said that email is still their most-preferred option for workplace communication.


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