Lack of productivity costing UK businesses £250m a year

New research has revealed that UK businesses are losing £250 million a year as a result of unproductive working days.

The Ahead of the Curve report, compiled by Samsung in partnership with the University of Leeds, found that distractions such as email traffic, constant meetings and office gossip are costing firms millions in lost revenue.

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Employees revealed that, in total, they are unproductive for 70 days of the year and only feel as though they have achieved something for 3.6 days out of the working week. Email is a huge factor behind the lack of productivity according to respondents, with 22 per cent claiming that they check their inbox every 22 minutes, while 38 per cent stop working to check every 15 minutes.

Loud talking was cited as the most common form of office distraction, mentioned by 57 per cent of respondents, with phones ringing making up 39 per cent of distractions and unnecessary meetings 26 per cent. Making tea rounds also feature at 18 per cent.

The findings suggest that open-plan offices, which made up the majority of the workplaces in the survey, are negatively impacting employee satisfaction and productivity, due to a lack of privacy. However, the report found that even those who work from home struggle to maintain productivity at times, with 86 per cent admitting that they can get side-tracked.

The vice president of Samsung’s enterprise business team Graham Long believes that larger screens, and curved displays in particular, can offer a more private and immersive working environment, ultimately increasing productivity.

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“Curved displays not only mean that fewer head and neck movements are required to read information, but by following the natural curve of the human eye, they offer a more private, comfortable, and immersive experience to help maintain productivity,” he explained. “Office workers can organise their on-screen information better, making it easier to read, which researchers believe will lead to a greater level of worker satisfaction. So there’s no better time to change and be ahead of the curve.”