Working from home has benefits but impacts collaboration

4 mins  
Written by: Netwealth
Date: 04 October 2022

Take outs

  • Work is something you do, not a place you go
  • Over half of firms (57.4%) agree work/life balance has improved as a result of working from home
  • Almost one in 4 firms indicate that manager-staff communication has become harder since working from home


Due to the pandemic, one of the most noticeable changes to the AdviceTech landscape is the shift towards working from home or other remote working arrangements. This has a real impact on the technology staff use, with businesses rethinking many AdviceTech areas from remote access to key applications, cybersecurity policies and hardware provisioning.

Although many businesses are making the transition to returning to the office, remote working is here to stay with eight in 10 businesses (77.9%) allowing regular working from home for staff. AdviceTech Stars have especially noticed the potential benefits, with nearly nine in 10 (88.9%) allowing regular remote working for their staff.
Among firms that allow regular working from home, they are on average working 2.2 days per week remotely (2.1 days for AdviceTech Stars). When considering an ideal post-pandemic world, advice businesses would like their staff to work an average 1.7 days from home, whilst AdviceTech Stars recognise the benefits of getting staff together in the office and would like less, preferring 1.4 days.

The benefits of working from home are clear

Advice firms indicate they have seen many benefits from remote working, with AdviceTech Stars having managed the transition more effectively and have enjoyed an outsized share of the benefits - perhaps because of their better IT systems.

"Advice firms agree that remote working has helped their staff - for over half of staff it has led to improved work/life balance and almost one in three have seen improvements in staff mental health. Productivity of staff has improved in many instances as has improved team communication", says Matt Heine Joint Managing Director of Netwealth.


"The shift to remote working has not been without its issues as there are fewer casual interactions, more video meetings, and a perceived pressure to be constantly online. Screens create miscommunication, and being glued to email and chat can disrupt productivity," suggests Matt Heine. "It seems the human side to staff interaction and management has somewhat been lost."

Onboarding staff is seen as harder by over one in three (34.3%) firms and more so for Stars (48.9%) as is staff training (29.4% of firms vs 40.0% of Stars). Teamwork has suffered too (27.7% overall vs 51.1% of Stars), which includes deteriorated team communication (24.1% vs 22.2% of Stars) and running workshops or brainstorming sessions (38.6% overall vs 53.3% of Stars).

The 2022 AdviceTech Report on Staff suggests that with the greater flexibility and productivity offered by technology and working from home, some staff are working longer hours beyond their work day, over the weekend or even while sick which can lead to burnout, lack of sleep or mental issues, the latter being an issue experienced by more than one in five businesses (22.1% vs 35.6% of Stars).

Of interest, almost one in four firms (24.4%) have indicated that manager-staff communication has become harder. For hybrid and remote employees, their managers are often the most important connection into the organisation - whether that be keeping them up to date and managing feedback or conflict. For advice firms, this is an important watch-out - where designing that face-to-face manager/staff catch up becomes even more critical.

How AdviceTech can make hybrid work more satisfying

"The crucial focus of this transformation to hybrid work is to find a solution that balances the needs of your business and of your team, supported by technology, accessibility, and common-sense work practices," Matt Heine suggests.

The 2022 AdviceTech Report on Staff indicates that AdviceTech Stars are leading the way in supporting the technology needs of their remote workers. Staff working in AdviceTech Star firms say they are more likely to do their job effectively from home (80.0% vs 69.0% overall).

AdviceTech Stars offer their staff additional equipment like desks, chairs and computers (51.1%), security support like VPNs and antivirus software (42.2%), and mobile phone and internet allowances (28.9%).

This is probably because staff are more likely to:

  • be happy with the IT helpdesk and support they get (53.3% of Stars vs 51.2% overall)
  • have access to appropriate software from home (84.4% of Stars vs 72.6% overall)
  • have access to important files and information from home (86.7% of Stars vs 69.0% overall)
  • have an appropriate desk setup from home (66.7% compared to 58.7% overall)
  • have good internet speed and connectivity at home (66.7% of Stars vs 57.8%).


More about AdviceTech Stars

AdviceTech Stars are firms that lead the way in many aspects of technology use, and which provide a useful guide to other firms wishing to take advantage of AdviceTech. AdviceTech Stars lead the way on both technology adoption and business performance. They’ve found the sweet spot of using the right AdviceTech in the right way, to address clearly identified issues and to generate tangible business and client benefits.

While many (64.4%) advice firms increased their revenue last year, more than 9 in 10 AdviceTech Stars (91.1%) increased theirs. Nearly half of Stars (46.7%) increased their revenue by between 11% and 25%; and more than one in six (17.8%) increased their revenue by more than 25%.

AdviceTech Stars use a greater number (17) of technologies than the average firm (14). They spend more as a percentage of revenue of technology – 9.7%, on average (compared to 8.0% of overall firms), and they also plan to spend more in future. Critically, they dedicate appropriate capital, resources and planning to technology. Over half (57.8%) have a clear map of the technology road ahead (versus 34.3%).

About the survey

The 2022 Netwealth AdviceTech Research Report surveyed 303 advice firms. Fieldwork took place from April 13 to May 19, 2022. The report is available at



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