Crashing computers and slow internet connections are by far the biggest gripe for UK office workers demonstrating that many British companies simply aren’t investing enough in their IT services.
A survey of 1,000 office workers, commissioned by electronics giant Samsung, reveals that 92 per cent of respondents found IT problems to be the most irritating. Indeed, on average, such issues take up half an hour of their time every working day.
Such IT grievances are a big problem for small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) because the survey’s questions were aimed at UK firms with under 250 employees.
Cheap and inadequate computers
Gary Jowett from Computer & Network Consultants in Brighton says: “The survey results aren’t surprising. All too often companies provide inadequate hardware because it’s cheaper and unsuitable for daily use in a working environment. The kit’s only cheaper because it’s either excess old inventory the manufacturer needs to shift at a discount to the seller which is fitted with out-of-date processors or it’s made from poor quality materials that will wear out quickly.”
This starkly contrasts with most companies’ willingness to invest in the tools they need for what they perceive to be their core activities.
Gary says: “Companies should view IT as an integral part of their core activities too, not as a bolt-on extra. In the modern business environment, computers are an essential tool everybody uses. Without them, it’s no longer possible to serve customers effectively or collaborate with business partners.”
Lack of knowledge
So why do smaller UK companies fail to deliver adequate IT?
Gary explains: “There’s often insufficient knowledge in many smaller companies about the evolving requirements of IT. While a company may have an IT manager who possesses a good understanding about the company’s existing systems, he or she will often spend too much on dealing with short-term fixes for inherent problems and won’t have an objective view of new tools and services that could benefit the business.”
So it’s essential to get external support for your IT to get a clearer perspective on the best value hardware and the correct way to configure systems and networks.
More job satisfaction
Giving your employees the best tools to do their jobs helps them be more productive and gives them greater job satisfaction. Let’s face it: at the end of each working day most people want to go home feeling a sense of achievement for a job well done.
All too often they return to their evening meal vexed and frustrated because they feel like they’ve had to go ten rounds with an intractable problem of heavy weight proportions while having one hand tied behind their back.
Failure to sort these problems out and invest sufficient budget in quality IT speaks volumes about a company’s attitude towards its employees.
“In the end, if you give your employees inadequate kit, the good ones will eventually leave and your business will be worse off as a result because, as the survey clearly shows, IT problems are the number one reason why people are unhappy in the workplace.,” says Gary.