As Brits continue to embrace hybrid working, new research from Adobe has found that many are still battling with their to-do lists, spending just over half their day actually working. And while this new way of working has brought the nation less hours on the commute and the ability to sign for deliveries, the findings also show the remainder of their working days are spent on ‘unnecessary’ meetings, ‘tedious’ admin, and other ‘pointless’ processes.
Despite Brits voting home as the most productive place to work, the issues they once associated with office life are still hindering their productivity. Half of the 2,000 employed Britons surveyed (49%) said a significant amount of their day is spent updating colleagues on the status of tasks and projects, unexpected phone calls (35%) and last-minute meetings (34%) are all contributing to the productivity gap.
The study also found that at any given time, workers never have fewer than 10 items on their daily to-do list but 86% routinely struggle to get through the tasks at hand. While Brits say they feel more productive when working from home, a host of highly relatable obstacles such as a constant stream of emails filling up the inbox (48%), unexpected calls (43%) and laborious admin tasks (33%) are the main culprits getting in the way of them doing their jobs. And while we believe there may be nothing a cuppa can’t solve, one third (33%) even blamed making tea as a hindrance to their productivity.
Brian Green, Vice President for Digital Media, Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) at Adobe said: ‘Many of us have more flexibility and freedom to set our own working routine than ever before, yet our utopian ideal of working on our own terms still remains under threat because of an inability to overcome productivity challenges regardless of where we choose to work.
Although digital tools, which once rescued us from isolation are still in use, we seem to have forgotten their power in enabling enhanced collaboration. From faster feedback and approval cycles to aiding working whilst on the move, we as business owners and leaders need to do more to promote tech that enables productivity in the modern-day workplace”
A vast range of time blockers have contributed to a lack of feeling accomplished, however over a third have found ways to self-soothe and boost productivity with a good desk set up and regular breaks. Days of the week can also play a key part in feeling accomplished, with Wednesday voted the best day for successfully completing tasks, while unsurprisingly, Friday was considered the worst.
On the home versus office debate, 39% of workers find they are most productive when working at home compared to 22%, who prefer the office environment. Of those who are working from home, forgoing the office commute was the biggest bonus.
After the removal of commuting time, being able to manage their own schedules was the second biggest factor persuading 18-24 year olds to work from home. For the 25-34 year olds, 55% preferred this environment because they could do their housework. Whereas for those aged 35 and upwards, the biggest draw to working from home is having a quieter space with less distractions.
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