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Distractions hampering office worker productivity

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Office workers get interrupted from the work on average every few minutes, it has been claimed.

Writing for the Wall Street Journal, Rachel Emma Silverman said employees find it very difficult to concentrate on their work for long before being distracted.

She said the chances are that employees will check their phone, answer a text or switch to their desktop to answer an email.

Away from their own desk, colleague cross-talk may attract their attention and lure them into a conversation, Ms Silverman stated.

“Distraction at the office is hardly new, but as screens multiply and managers push frazzled workers to do more with less, companies say the problem is worsening and is affecting business,” she noted.

“While some firms make noises about workers wasting time on the web, companies are realising the problem is partly their own fault.”

Ms Silverman said digital technology has led to significant productivity increases, but the modern workday “seems custom-built to destroy individual focus”.

She suggested that a “ceaseless tide of meetings and internal emails” means workers increasingly scramble to get their ‘real work’ done on the margins, early in the morning or late in the evening.

“And the tempting lure of social-networking streams and status updates make it easy for workers to interrupt themselves,” the writer noted.

Back in September, Red e App claimed that the average office worker gets distracted by social media every ten minutes.

And when this occurs, it can take them up to 25 minutes to get back on task.