Do Social Tools Really Hurt Employee Productivity?

By Mikal E. Belicove|For|May 31, 2011

A number of the tools you might be using at your business to increase productivity may be doing the exact opposite. A recent survey of people working in sales, marketing, human resources and legal departments in U.S. businesses of all sizes claims that collaboration and social tools are actually costing businesses millions of dollars in lost hours.

Emailing, text messaging, instant messaging, switching windows among stand-alone tools and applications, and checking personal accounts on social networking utlities like Facebook, account for nearly 60 percent of work interruptions, says the study, which was conducted by uSamp and commissioned by social email software provider (pronounced “Harmony”). Forty-five percent of employees surveyed said they can’t work 15 consecutive minutes without interruption. Another 53 percent figure they waste at least an hour a day because of distractions brought on by these tools.

Based on an arbitrary salary of $30 an hour for the average employee, the study claims that…

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