Budgets, clients, deadlines, meetings, shareholders – work is already stressful enough without the additional roadblock of an IT issue. Rearing their head at the most inopportune moments, printer jams and missing updates divide our attention between our actual job responsibilities and the technical support required to fix the issue we’re experiencing.
What IT issues plague employees across the United States? And is the quality of technical support perceived differently at small, medium, and large companies? We asked questions like this to over 2,000 workers to identify the biggest technological pet peeves in the workplace today.
Here’s what we learned.
Over 60 percent of workers experience slow Wi-Fi or internet connection speeds. There are several reasons why this might be the case – everything from the placement of a Wi-Fi router or repeater to the types of materials used to construct the building housing your workspace can affect the speed of your wireless connection. Employees actually find slow connection speeds more annoying than co-workers eating loudly or messily when it comes to office pet peeves.
Slow computers were the second most common IT issue to occur in the workplace. This, like slow Wi-Fi or internet connection speeds, presents several possibilities behind diminished performance. Things such as Group Policies in a Windows-based office environment, which allow network administrators to populate user, security, and network policies to specific users or computers, may mean longer start-up times for employees. Without being aware of the challenges employees face in your company, these issues could be occurring in your workplace today.
After excluding the top issue experienced in every single industry – slow Wi-Fi and internet speeds – we see additional problems that may be causing weekly, daily, or even hourly frustration for employees in different industries. Workers in the legal, education, and government and public administration fields see printer or paper jams as their chief concern among all other IT problems. The transition to a paperless office environment may be a better solution than upgrading printers – even the American Bar Association believes it is possible in fields traditionally dominated by paper.
Those working in the telecommunications, medical and health care, technology, scientific, and information services and data processing fields all shined the spotlight on computer processing speeds being too slow. Here’s where a great IT team would be able to ask the necessary questions to help triage the issue, formulate a solution, and improve the experience for the team.
When we looked at the age of employees and the most common IT issues, Gen Xers and millennials have a need – the need for speed. The top two issues they experienced the most were slow Wi-Fi or internet connection speeds and computer processing speeds, while baby boomers ranked printer jams as the most frustrating IT problem. Gen Xers and millennials experienced issues with paper jams as well, but not as frequently as baby boomers.
Over 30 percent of millennials also identified the challenge of working on an outdated computer operating system. These individuals are almost three times more likely to be early adopters of technology and are perhaps left wondering why their employer or IT team is unable to keep their company at the forefront of technology.
Most workers, regardless of age or gender, feel they’re either capable of solving most problems or know enough to get by when it comes to IT issues. Fewer than 1 percent of men and women indicated they were lost when it came to resolving a technical issue, but fewer women reported they were genius-level experts with technology.
Over 80 percent of millennials felt they were either a tech wizard (11 percent) or able to solve most problems (73 percent). Contrast this with baby boomers – where only 1 percent claimed to be a computer genius or able to solve most problems (65 percent) – and you can see that age probably plays a big part in confidence team members may have when solving IT issues. Ultimately, having employees who can work through and resolve situations that arise could potentially reduce the need for an IT team, but could this affect their focus and productivity regarding their specific job functions?
Companies with fewer than 100 employees were the most likely not to have a dedicated IT support team. Small businesses with one to four employees (68 percent), five to nine employees (39 percent), or 10 to 19 employees (38 percent) – and even companies with 20 to 99 employees (17 percent) – are potentially putting their business at risk by not having a dedicated strategy. Without a support team, they’re either having to purchase costly support when needed or asking employees to divide their time and solve issues that trained specialists could resolve more quickly.
However, things aren’t necessarily perfect for larger companies with dedicated IT teams either. Some would still prefer to fire the team they have helping with password questions or backup concerns. Whether the company has 100 to 499 employees (8 percent) or more than 10,000 employees (7 percent), it’s worth understanding what types of issues are challenging the department’s resolution progress and how these services could improve, or what services are missing when looking for a new external technical support solution.
Internal and external IT support options exist for companies of any size. An internal option means dedicated in-house team members who have specific schedules and scale to meet work needs only as quickly as you can hire or train them. They also generally require the same type of compensation packages that other employees in the company earn. This can mean a massive outlay of capital, which can be challenging for new or growing companies. External support options mean fewer chats at the water cooler but might mean unmatched employee scalability.
According to employees, their feelings toward external and internal teams are very similar when it comes to issues being resolved quickly or slowly. External (87 percent) and internal (92 percent) options offer a mostly similar level of service, which should be a reason to reevaluate the need for dedicated internal support versus external options.
Most employees experience the same type of IT issues at the workplace. Speed – internet and Wi-Fi or the computer – tend to be the top concerns. But the speed in which the IT department handles these issues can be a concern as well. Putting your team in a position where they end up playing out of role – printer technician instead of sales manager or network engineer instead of human resources partner – could be hurting your efficiency and, ultimately, the bottom line.
For small and growing businesses struggling to offer reliable and fast-managed IT services, MonsterCloud is a one-stop shop for virtual IT solutions that offer unparalleled speed and savings. With a no hassle, no fee, two-month free trial, the only thing left to lose is those nagging technical support issues you’re still experiencing with your current team in place.
We surveyed 2,034 U.S. workers to find out their most common workplace IT issues. We based the company size on the U.S. Census Bureau’s business-size brackets.
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