How productive are we, really? Whether we’re working from home or the office, interruptions happen. Mopria Alliance surveyed work-from-home and in-office employees to first learn the types of distractions that affect each category of worker, then to strategize solutions for greater productivity.
We’ll start with the big picture. The survey found that all 537 surveyed employees who work 30 hours or more per week experience an average of 77 distractions per week. This breaks down to roughly one distraction every half an hour. Generally speaking, these interruptions have a negative effect on work and productivity, and also contribute to higher levels of stress.
What’s taking our attention away from the task at-hand? The survey categorized the top distractions as personal communications, checking email or browsing the internet, and unplanned conversations with work colleagues. Office workers and remote workers alike face these interruptions, but to different degrees.
The main takeaway is that personal communications in the form of online chats, texts or phone calls, and unplanned conversations are the biggest distractions for both in-office and work-from-home employees. Most affected by these distractions are parents working from home. Parents living with children face 37% more distractions compared to non-parents, typically due to supporting their children in some capacity.
It’s important to note, however, that workplace distractions pose their own toxic challenges to in-office employees. 90% of office workers face distractions related to unplanned conversations with colleagues. 37% of employees say they have to work extra hours to make up for distractions, with 46% saying they take longer to complete their work and accomplish less during the day.
That Should Have Been An Email
Sometimes, work itself can be distracting. According to our surveyed workers, meetings are a work-related source of distraction that contribute to stress and challenges for all employees, no matter where they work.
On average, Mopria found that all workers spend over 25% of their work week in meetings, and on average, 46% of these meetings are deemed unproductive to a worker’s core tasks.
The Bottom Line: How Distractions Affect Productivity
So what exactly is all this lack of productive work time adding up to? Our survey found that nearly half (46%) of workers at-home and in-office struggle to finish projects on time, and 57% end up working extra hours to accomplish the tasks they couldn’t finish during the workday. On the whole, work ends up taking longer, with 33% of workers saying they need more time to finish their work and overcome distractions.
All of this adds up to a pretty toxic work environment overall, with 37% of workers feeling less connected or more isolated and nearly 30% feeling stressed daily.
How Print and Scan Can Help
In addition to uncovering the struggles at-home and in-office employees face due to daily distractions, Mopria also found that print and scan solutions can help employees mitigate distractions to find more focus and productivity at work.
Of all workers polled in this survey, 79% said that they believe printing helps them focus. Similarly, 78% believe that printing is key to improving their work. It’s no surprise, then, that we also found that 78% of all workers prefer reading printing materials rather than digital text on a screen. 71% also said they would be more productive with easy mobile scan and print solutions.
How else can print and scan solutions benefit workers? 81% of print users believe that printing or scanning easily from their phone would save them time, and 84% believe print helps them focus better at work. The same number of respondents also said that being able to print or scan easily is important to overcoming distractions, and 74% of print users believe they would be more productive with easy mobile scan and print.
So while all workers are facing distractions, productivity challenges and psychological hurdles whether in the office or at home, there are untapped opportunities for printing and scanning options to be offered to all workers regardless of their location to improve their work productivity and overall wellbeing.
At Mopria Alliance, we work with technology industry leaders in print and scan to streamline the customer experience with universal standards for print and scan. With a focus on mobility and modern productivity trends, we meet users with intuitive and seamless experiences when using a printer, multi-function printer or scanner, regardless of brand. Our Mopria Scan and Mopria Print Service apps further support this as workplace solutions for use at-home, on the go or in the office.
To learn more about the Mopria Alliance, please visit www.mopria.org.