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Technology Issues in Construction Identified as Contributor to the UKs Productivity Gap

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New research released from Managed 24/7 has revealed that the average employee in construction who uses IT loses more than 20 minutes per day of productive time due to technology issues.

A critical new report released today by Managed 24/7, a leading managed IT services business, reports the impact of poor IT to the UK’s workforce productivity. It is widely accepted that the UK is facing a productivity crisis and this report outlines, for the first time, how much of this loss is caused by poor IT systems and support. The report has suggests that IT failure could cost UK PLC £35 billion per year* if the average amount of time lost was applied to all full-time workers, the equivalent of the entire population of Birmingham and Milton Keynes not working all year.

The average GB employee in the construction sector who uses IT and has wasted any time wastes 21.28 minutes per day due to IT issues. What’s more there is the biggest skills gap in the construction industry, with 19% of respondents disagreeing that their IT skills match the level required by their work.

The top four issues experienced by IT users in the GB construction sector in the last year:

  • Slow running systems / equipment (64%)
  • Failures in connection (48%)
  • Outdated kit or software  (26%)
  • Lack of expert support (20%)

In addition to the underlying costs in term of productivity and the bottom line, the report also found that amongst employees who use IT at work:

  • 32% believe that their workplace IT systems are damaging their ability to do a good job, a rate which rises to 37% for firms with more than 500 employees
  • 44% believe that IT problems directly cost their business time and money
  • 40% agree that they had better IT systems at home than at work
  • 24% who have experienced IT issues said they have caused customers to complain, a proportion that rises to 30% in firms with 500 or more employees

John Pepper, CEO and Founder of Managed 24/7, said: “The UK is facing a productivity crisis. The UK currently ranks seventh in the G7 and 17th in the G20 for productivity per person, and fixing our outdated and poorly managed IT systems and support should play a significant role in closing this gap, especially in the UK construction sector.

“It takes a German worker four days to produce what his or her UK counterpart does in five and this crisis is resulting in the UK lagging well behind other developed nations. In light of recent outages such as at British Airways and at the NHS, it is time for the UK to address our IT issues to ensure we aren’t left behind by our more technically adept neighbours.”

When issues do occur, more than a third (34%) of all IT users do not feel that they receive sufficient IT support.  This is more marked for very large organisations (500 or more employee firms where 36% of staff feeling dissatisfied). Large companies (those with more than 500 employees) have the worst record for resolving IT issues, with 15% of respondents finding it typically takes more than a day for issues to be resolved.

Staff are therefore inclined to attempt to fix issues on their own, with 27% of respondents saying they are most likely to sort IT issues themselves, with men more likely to sort out their own issues (34%), than women (20%).

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