A wonder any work gets done!
September 2, 2014
Johannesburg – Between Facebook and smoking breaks, it’s a wonder any work gets done in South African businesses, according to Salary.com’s 2014 Wasting Time at Work Survey.
It found that a staggering 89% of employees admitted to wasting time in their work environment.
The results show that 62% of respondents waste between 30 to 60 minutes per day, 26% waste 2 to 5 hours a day and 4% waste over half-a-day on non-work related tasks.
The biggest culprits are employees spending time dealing with colleague-related annoyances (24%) and browsing the internet (26%). What little time remains of a work day is often lack-lustre performance by anxious, angry or depressed workers.
Mind the gap
The picture this survey paints shows employees who are disengaged from their work. It indicates that line-managers are not managing employees in an effective way, according human resource management provider iFacts.
While performance appraisals will give some indication of performance, they unfortunately don’t give the whole picture. There is a gap between HR departments and the employees at the coalface.
Often this results in the blame game, with management picking on staff for poor work performance and missed deadlines. A dispirited workforce leads to poor internal relationships and external relationships with customers and suppliers. It may even weaken security in some cases.
Communication and engagement
The truth is that if an employee’s wellbeing is not addressed holistically, it can have a significant impact on their work ethic and work performance. This can lead to stress and vulnerability.
“At iFacts, we know that crime syndicates prey on such an employee—and criminal and fraudulent activity won’t be discovered by the company until it’s too late,” the company said in a statement.
“Even without criminal activity, absenteeism and poor work performance becomes a headache for the overloaded HR practitioner having to deal with disciplinary and corrective procedures.”
Communication in any organisation is important. It helps employees feel connected and engaged in an inclusive corporate culture.
iFacts believes businesses that offer a wellness programme will see the benefit in their financial performances. This applies to both big and small businesses in South Africa.
Is clockwatching the way to go?
“The answer to poor productivity and struggling morale in a company is not draconian time management. Time is not static. It is intangible and means different things to different people,” according to iFacts.
“What will work is to empower employees to take ownership of their work—and their own lives outside of work—so that every employee is committed, positive and productive.”
How much are slackers costing you?
According to Occupational Care South Africa (OCSA) and Statistics SA, the South African economy loses between R12bn to R16-billion a year as a result of absent workers.
An average of 15% of staff are absent on any given day and only one in three people, who do not go to work are actually ill. More than 40% of sick notes are issued without a diagnosis.
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