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UK Office Workers Wasting 1.8 Billion Hours a Year Due to Mediocre Technology, Research Reveals

UK office workers waste 1.8 billion working hours every year because the technology they’re given isn’t good enough, research from Insight has revealed.

The survey of 2,000 UK office workers also showed that more than a third (34 percent) of employees said that not being equipped with the right technology makes remote and flexible working difficult and stressful. In total, 80 percent of office workers at some point have felt they don’t have the technology they need to do their jobs properly, putting them at a disadvantage.  

The research also showed that employees are being flooded with irrelevant information that makes them disengage from their employers and colleagues. Less than half (47 percent) of the information employees receive from inside their organisation is relevant to them, and 60 percent of employees ignore internal communications until it’s brought to their attention.

Other key findings include:

  • On average, workers say they waste 2.4 hours per week because they don’t have the right technological support, thanks to unnecessary travel or having to work inefficiently.
  • The average office worker misses information 4 times a week, and more than a third (38 percent) miss important or useful information at least once a day – meaning they have to work harder just to keep pace with information.
  • Only 53 percent of office workers say that internal communications are effective – meaning many employers are not engaging with their employees in the right way.  

60 percent of employees ignore internal communications until it’s brought to their attention.

“In 2019, employees shouldn’t be complaining that technology makes their lives harder,” said Emma de Sousa, UK Managing Director at Insight. “Businesses should strive to keep workers informed and involved, however, company information and updates are being ignored as a result of information overload.

In contrast, as a consumer, you have access to a wide range of technology and devices, where information received and shared is tailored based on the user preferences; businesses need to take the same approach. Technology in the workplace that cannot help streamline communication, keep employees engaged and support a healthy work-life balance is not fit for purpose.”

Technology is also frustrating employees’ efforts to work closer with their colleagues. The average UK office worker suffers delays or an impact on the quality of their work three times a week because collaboration with co-workers is too difficult.

“Technology in the workplace that cannot help streamline communication, keep employees engaged and support a healthy work-life balance is not fit for purpose.”

One simple reason for technology frustrations is that employees often aren’t given the training or education they need. A staggering 77 percent of office workers have been given technology and apps without being told what benefit they would bring, or how to use them at some point. This means employers may well be making the technology investments their employees need, but falling at the final hurdle. Left unchecked, frustrated employees may begin to look elsewhere: 71 percent of office workers are dissatisfied with the technology in their workplace.

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