Research reveals connected tech is a bright way to recruit and retain talent for SMEs 

    October 16, 2018


    Research reveals connected tech is a bright way to recruit and retain talent for SMEs


    • New research from Signify finds over half (54%) of SMEs currently struggle to find new employees
    • Two in five SMEs think investing in connected technology would help retain employees
    • 61% of workers believe that smart lighting would give customers and clients a more favorable opinion of a business


    Eindhoven, The Netherlands – Over half of small and medium-sized enterprises struggle to recruit talent and two in five have issues retaining employees, according to new research from Signify (Euronext: LIGHT), the world leader in lighting, formerly Philips Lighting. The findings show that employers are potentially missing a trick as over half of the employees surveyed* said they’d be in favor of their company investing in connected tech, specifically smart lighting, ahead of other improvements.


    High workplace satisfaction influences engagement and the reputation of a business as a great place to work. So it’s no surprise that SMEs are looking into connected tech options to enhance engagement."


    Bianca van der Zande,

    research scientist at Signify


    “Nowadays with new technologies including LED and IoT, lighting can be a powerful influencer in the workplace. It has a big impact on how people can control lighting.  With about half of the surveyed employees being in favor of having smart lighting installed, this could be an excellent way for SMEs to make the workplace more appealing to current and potential employees. We want to see this reflected in our working environments where connected tech is an important way to appeal to the best and brightest.”


    When it comes to connected technology usage among SMEs, nearly one in five (17%) already use it in some form in their business, and just under a third (29%) are interested in doing so in the future. SMEs in the US were more likely to cite employee retention as an issue their business faces than those in the UK, 45% versus 35% respectively. Also, those in the US appear to have more trouble motivating their employees, with two in five (40%) saying employee motivation is a problem, compared with less than a third in the UK (28%).


    Dr Craig Knight, Chartered Psychologist, Honorary Research Fellow (Exon), Director of Identity Realization Ltd, agrees on the importance of lighting at work, saying, “Light can have astonishing effects within the workplace. It has been shown to be at once invigorating, calming and sculptural (think theatre style lighting). Yet too many businesses pay scant attention to light, offering cheap rather than effective solutions. Science suggests that poor lighting strategies put wellbeing, happiness and productivity in jeopardy.”


    The benefits of smart lighting could go beyond improved employee wellbeing and engagement. Of the SMEs that have areas that customers or clients visit, over a third (36%) thought that smart lighting would improve the customer or client experience. Employees are even more positive about the effects though, with more than three in five (61%)* believing that smart lighting would give customers and clients a more favorable opinion of a business.


    Earlier this month Signify launched Interact Pro, a smart lighting system and software specially developed for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Click here to read the Interact Pro new release and Infographic.

    Notes for Editors: About the SME research

    All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 1,097 senior decision makers from private sector businesses with 10 to 249 employees in the UK and with 11 to 500 employees in the US. Fieldwork was undertaken between August 13 – 22, 2018. The survey was undertaken online. The figures have been weighted to be representative of each country’s business size, then given an even weighting for each country to produce an ‘average’ value.


    About the employee research

    Asterisked (*) figures are from online interviews undertaken by Ipsos Mori for Signify. Research was conducted in August 2018, polling over 5,000 adults from five different markets: China, Germany, the Netherlands, the UK and the USA. The samples are nationally representative of the populations.

    For further information, please contact:


    Signify Corporate Communications

    Daniel Bausor

    Tel: +44 7701 094980


    About Signify


    Signify (Euronext: LIGHT) is the world leader in lighting for professionals and consumers and lighting for the Internet of Things. Our Philips products, Interact connected lighting systems and data-enabled services, deliver business value and transform life in homes, buildings and public spaces. With 2017 sales of EUR 7.0 billion, we currently employ approximately 30,000 employees and have a presence in over 70 countries. We unlock the extraordinary potential of light for brighter lives and a better world. News from Signify is located at the Newsroom, Twitter and LinkedIn. Information for investors can be found on the Investor Relations page.

    Street Lighting-Smart-iot

    More press releases

    • Announcing new customer-centric organization and structural cost reductions

      December 01, 2023

      Announcing new customer-centric organization and structural cost reductions

    • Signify's EcoVadis Platinum rating

      November 29, 2023

      Signify's EcoVadis Platinum rating

    • Philips Radii auto-linkable solar lights light up your outdoor space

      November 06, 2023

      Philips Radii auto-linkable solar lights light up your outdoor space