UK productivity gap worsening due to problems with small business IT

The UK is currently ranked 7th in the G7 and 17th in the G20 for productivity per person, though its suggested this position could be improved

The UK productivity gap is worsening due to problems with small business IT, according to a report by Samsung Electronics.

The survey of 250 UK small business owners and 1,000 office workers has revealed that respondents spend a combined total of five hours and 47 mins working on IT accounts and office management a week – compared to just three and half hours on sales and three hours on marketing.

It’s suggested that if business owners could spend more time achieving growth via sales and marketing channels, and less on more menial tasks, it could help increase national productivity.

The UK is currently ranked 7th in the G7 and 17th in the G20 for productivity per person, though its believed this position could and should be improved.

Indeed, it appears such tech problems appear to be holding employees back from completing their daily duties, as 91% admit they lose concentration after aiding a colleague who has IT problems.

Though each individual incident may not take much time, it appears to add up over a long period.

63% of workers spend between 15 and 45 minutes a day helping their workmates with such issues, meaning businesses are losing almost four hours a week per employee.

When it comes to the time of day that employees get most done, 81% feel they are most productive in the morning, with 10-11am being the most productive hour (42%).

Graham Allcott, founder of Think Productive, said:

“We have some fantastic businesses and innovators in the UK small business sector, but there are still big productivity issues.

“A lot of workers are distracted from the things that create impact and growth by tasks like IT issues, and we are falling behind the rest of the world as a result.

“While lots of these distractions might only be for 15 minutes here and there, this quickly adds up and affects overall productivity.”

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