Research by Plastic Logic has found that one in four employees (24%) has accidentally damaged an electronic device at work. The cost of replacing these items cost employers over £1billion each year.
Smartphones are the most likely to be broken, accounting for 63% of damaged devices. Tablet PCs fare slightly better in the workplace, making up just a tenth of accidental damage.
The most damage to devices is caused by workers accidentally dropping them – a quarter (26%) of electronic devices are broken in this way. Some 14% of devices are left in pieces by clumsy workers sitting on them by mistake. Even the humble cup of tea can prove deadly with one in ten devices (11%) ceasing to work after having liquid spilt on it in the office.
Ironically, it is the IT workers and engineers who cause the most damage to their technology, with more than a quarter (28%) of people working in this sector saying they have accidentally cracked the screen of their smartphone.
Age was found to have the biggest impact on how accident prone workers are. More than half (53%) of workers aged 16 – 24 have damaged a device at work. Young workers are twice as likely to break devices as those aged 35 – 44, and three times more likely than those who are 45 or older. On the other hand, the study found that gender has little impact on how clumsy workers are – just one percent divided men and women, with male workers slightly more accident prone than their female colleagues.
The solution would appear to be if you don’t want to end up paying a fortune for damaged IT equipment consider employing only people over 45 years of age, don’t trust your IT department with anything, and certainly don’t be too quick to issue smartphones to your staff!
Are your workers as clumsy as those in this study? How many electronic devices have you had to replace this year due to carelessness of your staff?