Home Marketing Improving Workplace Productivity: Is your smartphone killing your productivity?

Improving Workplace Productivity: Is your smartphone killing your productivity?

two hands pressing phone - is your smartphone killing you

Smartphone killing your productivity? Wondering how to be productive on your phone?

You see, your smartphone might be killing your productivity – you just don’t know it yet.

The whole essence of a smartphone is to make you more productive, but does having one really make you one?

Before we dive into that, let take a look at a few stats first.

Data obtained from different sources show that there are about 2.7 billion smartphone users around the world and this is projected to reach 2.87 billion users next year.

According to one study, the average person touches, swipes or clicks their phone 2,617 times a day while the top 10% do this about 5,427 times a day.

This is an indication of how much the smartphone has crept into our daily lives.

In a study by eMarketer, 42.5% of smartphone users in Brazil say they would rather give up water and electricity for a day than go without their phone, while in a different study, 47% admitted that they couldn’t live without their phones in the US.

This is scary, it shows that smartphone obsession is real.

In fact, a study by Tech Jury shows that 66% of smartphone users are addicted to their phones.

But in a survey by Google, 75% of the people say that their smartphones make them more productive.

Is this really true?

I don’t think so and here are 6 cell phones and workplace productivity statistics that back that claim.

Top Cellphone Distraction At Work Statistics

Smartphones have drastically changed the way we work.

They have allowed us to stay connected and work on-the-go, making our work lives more efficient and flexible. However, while smartphones have many benefits, they can also be a double-edged sword.

Let’s find out from these smartphones in business and productivity statistics.

Average users spend about 171 minutes every day on their smartphones

When you consider how long an average user does this is in a year, perhaps it might be easier to see how much productivity our smartphones drain.

Spending 171 minutes a day means that the average users spend about 62,415 minutes on their smartphones every year.

When you put this into perspective, you would realize that an average user spends 1 in every 8.5 years of their lives on their smartphone.

Of course, this is just for the average users but have you considered the implication at the global stage?

I guess not.

With about 2.7 billion smartphone users in the world today, this means that a single day, the world spends about 461.7 billion minutes on smartphone screen time.

This means that if we decide to spend the amount of time we spend every day on our smartphones doing some work, it would have earned about $55.8 billion in wages in the US.

The federal minimum wage in the US is $7.25 per hour.

70% of all workers keep their phones within eye contact at work

While in the US, a national survey by Career Builder shows that 82% of those with smartphones keep them within eye contact.

Simply doing this can affect productivity.

A study found out that having our mobile devices visible and audible in the office can be a massive productivity drain.

In a different study, 66% of those surveyed admitted that they use their smartphones several times a day while working.

And in another study, over 50% of employees say that they use their smartphone to access websites blocked by the company’s IT department.

Now, for most of the employees that fail to switch-off their notifications, this means that they would always be distracted whenever their phones buzz or ding.

This, of course, affects productivity.

It takes on average 23 minutes to refocus after a distraction at work

Estimates from a recent study by UC Irvine shows that it can take up to 23 minutes on average to recover and refocus after a single distraction at the workplace.

Alongside noisy co-workers and meetings, smartphones have been fingered as one of the biggest distractions.

A study by the Journal of Experimental Psychology in 2013 found out that the probability of making an error at the workplace increases by 28% after making a phone call and 23% after receiving a text message.

With the further proliferation of technology in our daily lives, one can only imagine that the probability has increased in the last 6 years.

An average smartphone user checks their smartphones about 47 times per day

What makes this scary is that is it takes about 23 minutes to refocus at work after a single interruption.

Of course, this means a loss in productivity.

And, when you consider the effect of doing this over the long-term, it becomes something to be concerned about.

The same study shows that average users check their smartphones about 17,155 times a year.

One scary thing with this obsession is that about 40% even do this is the toilet.

Another study shows that 85% of smartphone users check their phone while speaking with family and friends and 80% do this 1 hour after waking up or going to sleep.

A study by Michigan State University shows that using a smartphone before bed results in less sleep and less energy at work the next day.

3 in 4 (75%) employers say that 2 or more hours a day are lost because of employees tends to be distracted.

While 43% think otherwise.

According to these respondents, at least 3 hours are lost every day.

In a survey by Career Builders, 1 in 5 of the employers say that their employees are productive for less than 5 hours and more than 55% of employers blame smartphones and texting for that.

In the same survey, the employers were also asked to reveal the most unusual or most memorable things they have caught an employee doing when they have been working.

One of the examples they gave was catching employees watching YouTube videos,

An average employee spends about 56 minutes every day using their smartphone

According to Brandi Britton, a district president for OfficeTeam

“It’s understandable that employees may occasionally use their mobile devices or attend to personal tasks during business hours. But these activities can easily become a distraction”

A survey from the firm shows that an average worker spends about 56 minutes a day using their smartphone for non-work activities.

Data obtained from the survey show that employees aged between 18-34 racked up to 70 minutes on their mobile devices in the workplace.

These interruptions reduce the amount of time that is spent working and consequently, this leads to a decline in productivity.

Final Thoughts On Cell Phones and Workplace Productivity

According to Dan Nixon of the Bank of England, our attachment to the smartphone is part of a “crisis of attention” that could be making it harder to work effectively, possibly to the extent that it is holding back the economy at large.

In one of his studies, he noticed a correlation between productivity and global shipments of smartphones.

According to him, in the past decades, productivity growth has slowed while global shipments of smartphones have risen.

While he believes then the evidence alone is not enough to make a definitive conclusion on the smartphone — productivity question, the 6 stats now provide enough grounds to make a valid conclusion. So, if you are serious about improving cell phones and productivity at work, then the insights from this statistics should inform your workplace phone use policy.


  • Chinasa Ferderick

    Ferderick is a highly skilled marketing expert with a passion for helping small businesses thrive in today's competitive landscape. With his comprehensive knowledge of the industry and expertise in marketing and SEO strategies, he has successfully assisted numerous businesses in achieving their goals.

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