Workers will smash their PCs to get an upgrade

One in four office workers reckons that the best way to get a new work computer is to smash up the one they have - either that or to take it down the junk shop themselves.

Some 40 per cent of office workers complain that their aging workplace PC hurts their productivity and many are tempted to resort to extreme measures to get an upgrade, including taking a hammer to to aging beast on the desktop.

Of some 3,000 office workers questioned across the UK, France and Germany, those in Britain are forced to use the most outdated workplace computers. The average computer in a British office was found to be over five years old, compared to German businesses, where the average age of a computer is only two years and seven months.

The French, however, were most likely resort to breaking their office PC, seeing it as the quickest way to get an upgrade.

Three times as many French respondents as Germans believe deliberately breaking their hardware is the best option, with the majority of Germans trusting their bosses to get them an upgrade when the time was right.

British workers become particularly frustrated when their work computers fail to match the performance of the PCs they’ve grown accustomed to at home. Some 40 per cent of British office workers surveyed have newer computers at home than they do at work – with those work computers being, on average, two years older.

Office employees who reported their work computer was older than their home computer were twice as likely to think that breaking a device is the best way to get an upgrade out of their employer.

The research was comissioned by online backup specialist Mozy, whose senior marketing manager, Claire Galbois-Alcaix said: “Employees no longer want to be held up by slow or faulty devices but they might not realise the level of damage they can be doing to the companies they work for by taking matters into their own hands.

“Employers also need to take action,"she warned. "It’s bad enough that they are running their businesses on computers that are so old that they could fail at any moment but, with a quarter of workers sharing the perception that bending the rules is the simplest option, there’s a real danger that that those doddery devices will be helped on their way to the scrap heap."

Some ten per cent of UK workers said they’d even resort to buying new parts for their work devices themselves to perform their own upgrade; particularly those who work in smaller organisations. .

The Mozy research, conducted by Vanson Bourne, surveyed 600 IT managers and 3,000 employees across the UK, France and Germany in January 2011. For further details on the research, click here.