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Technostress: are employees running out of battery life?

cath everett | personnel today | 13 april 2015

PA’s Jonathon Hogg, a people and operations expert, is quoted in an article in Personnel Today about the over-exposure to ever-changing technology systems which are affecting employees in a way described as “technostress”.

The article explains that the issues with managing multiple technologies means people are always multi-tasking and this has an effect on people’s work-life balance as they are “always on”.

Jonathon says that unfortunately the upshot of “technostress” in behavioural terms is that people often become much more impatient, intolerant and even demonstrate an inability to think clearly due to a constant sense of urgency.

Jonathon explains what happens to productivity when employees are always communicating and “switched on”: There’s a frenzy of communication, but people aren’t necessarily being as productive as the business would like. It doesn’t necessarily lead to creativity either as people simply don’t have the space to reflect and think.”

Jonathon goes on to explain what can HR do about this increase in technostress. Jonathan says that while there has already been plenty of research to show that the problem exists, it has not particularly filtered down to the business community as yet.

“My sense is that HR isn’t as tech-savvy as it could be,” says Jonathon. “So a lot of people aren’t necessarily on top of the impact across the workforce, which means they probably don’t have appropriate strategies and policies in place.”

As a result, Jonathon believes that the time is now ripe for HR to step up and tackle the issue head on, even if it can be a difficult one to spot.

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