We’d all love our tech to run perfectly at work, but how often does that happen? When our devices and programs go down, it hurts employee productivity, which can be incredibly costly for your business. Here’s what you’re losing when tech doesn’t work, and what you can do to minimize the damage.
The price of tech issues
U.S. office workers spend 22 minutes each day handling tech-related issues, according to a 2016 survey by the HR consulting firm, Robert Half® Technology. For those with full-time roles, that adds up to about 90 hours a year, or nearly one full workday each month. If that worker is making $35 an hour, your company loses $3,150 each year per employee. So, for a business with 1,000 people, the result is more than $3 million in lost production annually, and that figure is significantly higher for larger corporations.
There are other costs associated with IT problems, too. When equipment breaks, you may have to repair or replace it. When someone asks a coworker for help with a problem, you’re losing the production of two employees at once. And what about when the entire network goes down? That could cost a company between $300,000 and $400,000 per hour, according to a majority of respondents in a 2019 survey by Information Technology Intelligence Consulting™. Taken together, the impact on your bottom line could be substantial.
How to decrease your losses
Your IT department can employ a number of smart strategies to help reduce the costs of tech setbacks. First, you should invest in technology and be proactive about repairing or replacing devices before they cause problems. Slow systems and equipment are the leading cause of tech-related productivity loss, according to a 2017 study by U.K. IT support company Managed 24/7™. And anticipating issues during, say, a system upgrade can stop the productivity drain before it starts.
It’s also critical to hire top-notch IT professionals who can rapidly identify tech failures and get employees back to work. Being knowledgeable, eager to help, and a clear communicator are invaluable qualities for technicians, and investing in a strong team will save you money in the long run.
Finally, you can reduce productivity loss by empowering employees to solve simple problems on their own. Include a self-service option on your IT portal with responses to frequently asked questions and step-by-step directions for common issues. Use automation wherever possible to help employees get instant answers and get back to their jobs. And walk them through fixes when they do call IT, so they can better know how to address the problem next time.