RingCentral release survey findings and, in a bold statement, announce, ‘Navigating multiple communications apps at work annoys men more in every situation; women, west coast workers and baby boomers lead in conquering app overload’. Though quite a brash statement, RingCentral’s research is not to be dismissed but rather acknowledged for what is it, quantitative data. When reading the companies findings, it would prove beneficial to note that gender is a spectrum and not two sets of opposing ideals; with that in mind, highlighting women (one of two genders) to be the sole perpetrator of ‘crushing’ men in the workplace is rather radical. For that reason, we here at NCN want the focus to be on all aspects of their research including the other fundamental factors: geographical location and age.
RingCentral, provider of global enterprise cloud communications and collaboration solutions, has released new findings exploring how workers manage app overload in relation to their gender, geographic location, and age group. While workers around the world still have a long way to go to effectively manage the influx of workplace apps — specifically communications apps — west coast employees, women, and baby boomers are leading the way in reducing the chaos and moving toward workplace zen.
A March 2018 survey report conducted by CITE Research on behalf of RingCentral, From Workplace Chaos to Zen: How App Overload Is Reshaping the Digital Workplace, found that using multiple communications apps designed to enhance productivity in many cases actually hampers effectiveness when used together. According to the report, seven in 10 workers waste up to an hour each day navigating these apps — the equivalent of up to 32 wasted days per year.
The survey of 2,000 knowledge workers across all industries in the US, UK, and Australia found that all workers are not created equal when it comes to managing this communications chaos. Based on their gender, geographic location, and age group, certain workers are ahead of the pack in their quest to overcome app overload and achieve workplace zen.
‘Women rock multitasking at work’
The company say, upon closer analysis the survey results show that women consistently get less annoyed than men when navigating multiple apps, supporting other research findings that women are more at ease with multitasking.
In all 14 scenarios explored in RingCentral’s research, findings suggest that men always find navigating multiple apps more annoying than women do. The biggest gaps between genders were in the following scenarios:
- 55% percent of men find navigating apps more annoying than losing weight, compared to 47% of women.
- 50% of men find navigating apps more annoying than dealing with an insurance company, compared to 42% of women.
- 46% of men find navigating apps more annoying than someone chewing with their mouth open, as opposed to 40% of women.
- 40% of men find navigating apps more annoying than their laptop freezing, compared to 35% of women.
With age comes zen: Baby boomers quiet the chaos
Older workers (ages 55 and older) navigate fewer apps and find communications volume less challenging, putting them ahead on the path to workplace zen. This is likely because baby boomers use the fewest communications apps.
- Just 41% of baby boomers use more than three apps regularly (i.e., at least once a week), compared to 50% of Gen Xers and 57% of millennials.
- Only 2% of working baby boomers navigate between apps more than five times per hour; compared to 19% of Americans and 22% of millennials.
- While 70% of Americans overall find the volume of communications challenging to getting their work done, 64% of working baby boomers find it challenging.
“We still have a long way to go to curb workplace productivity losses that result from switching between communications channels, but we can learn invaluable lessons from those that have made headway overcoming app overload,” says Neha Mirchandani, vice president of corporate marketing at RingCentral.
“Our report From Workplace Chaos to Zen revealed that integrated workplace communications solutions that minimise the number of apps deliver time savings, better collaboration, and increased productivity. Two in three workers called for a single platform to manage all their communications and help them achieve what has eluded them to date—workplace zen.”