CXO

75% of Americans agree notifications kill focus in the workplace, most blame social media

Digital notifications aren't as helpful as they intend to be, leading to more procrastination from users.

A digital distraction epidemic has plagued the US, according to a recent Branded Research survey, and notifications play a major role. ReMarkable, a Norwegian-based startup company focused on tech addiction, used Branded Research's study to illuminate the prevalence of digital distractions. In fact, 75% of Americans blamed digital notifications for their procrastination and lack of focus at work, said a Thursday press release from reMarkable.

The report surveyed nearly 1,200 US adult employees to determine the negative impact digital distractions have on their work days. According to the report, individuals spend nearly an eight hour work days' amount of time checking notifications through the course of one week.

SEE: Streaming media policy (Tech Pro Research)

Additionally, nearly 7 in 10 employees reported emails placing a negative effect on their quality of work, said the release. The majority of individuals (56%) even said they do their best work outside of the regular workday because of digital distractions, with almost the same number of respondents (57%) expressing the desire to reduce digital distractions at the workplace, according to the release.

"The destructive global phenomenon of digital distraction is undeniable and must be taken seriously to avoid further jeopardizing our ability to think in a noisy, fast-paced world," said reMarkable CEO, Magnus Wanberg, in the release. "It's time we fight back against society's profound addiction and create a more human direction for technology."

In an effort to combat digital distractions, more than half (53%) of respondents said they have deleted a distraction application; however, 4 in 10 admitted to reinstalling the app within two weeks of deleting, said the release. More than half of these business professionals also said social media is the biggest distraction during the workday, blurring their personal lives with their work lives, added the release.

Tech is a major limiting factor to workplace productivity, according to TechRepublic's Alison DeNisco Rayome. In fact, workplace productivity has steadily dropped in every quarter the past couple years, which we can mostly attribute to the increase in AI and tech advancements, Rayome added.

Check out this TechRepublic article for 11 tips on eliminating distractions.

The big takeaways for tech leaders:

  • Some 75% of employees attributed their lack of focus at work to digital notifications. — Branded Research, 2018
  • Respondents cited notifications from and the presence of social media to be the biggest distraction, blurring the line between work and personal life. — Branded Research, 2018

Also see

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Image: iStockphoto/Antonio_Diaz

About Macy Bayern

Macy Bayern is an Associate Staff Writer for TechRepublic. A recent graduate from the University of Texas at Austin's Liberal Arts Honors Program, Macy covers tech news and trends.

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