Information Overload: Why Majority of Brits Are Experiencing Daily Stress

New OpenText research reveals doubling in number of Brits experiencing the effects of ‘Information Overload’ since the pandemic began, with ever-increasing number of data sources, difficulty finding information and not having the right digital tools for hybrid work all impacting stress levels, performance and job satisfaction for employees.

The Effect of Information Overload

New research from OpenText reveals the extent to which the effects of information overload are impacting the UK and its workers and how this has changed during the COVID 19 pandemic. The survey findings offer market insights, trend data, and predictions for what lies ahead as organisations take steps to combat the effects of information overload. The key lies in being able to successfully transform how information is accessed, managed and leveraged throughout the organisation, so they can achieve an information advantage. This advantage sets organisations apart in their markets and can act as a catalyst for growth.
Four in five (80%) UK respondents now feel that information overload – driven by factors including constant information 24/7, pervasive social media or too many apps to check each day – is contributing to their daily stress. This compares with just two in five (44%) who indicated in a similar OpenText survey conducted in March 2020 that information overload contributed to their daily stress.
As our work lives continue to spill into our personal lives with hybrid working, surprisingly even in 2022, less than half of UK employees (46%) feel they are equipped with the right digital tools to work at home. Even more surprising is that this has dropped from 66% at the onset of the pandemic.

Constant Information Everywhere

One in four (24%) respondents say they have to use eleven or more accounts, resources, tools and apps on a daily basis. This compares with just one in seven (14%) who said this was the case two years ago, proving that the information people need to access resides within an increasing number of data repositories and applications.
In fact, due to the siloed nature of where information sits within organisations, more than two in five UK employees (41%) say that they normally spend, on average, one or more hours per day searching on company networks or shared systems for specific work files or pieces of information just to do their job.
“For businesses and their employees, the proposition of trying to manage the volume and complexity of information –structured and unstructured data that is pervasive and growing exponentially – can be a daunting one. What we’ve come to realise is that information on its own is not the answer,” said Sandy Ono, Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at OpenText.

Not Just a Matter of What and Where

Information scattered across multiple locations is another reason for the difficulties workers face, with more than two in five (42%) reporting it’s hampering their ability to find the information they need to do their job. One in five (19%) feel that their colleagues not saving the latest version of documents to shared systems also hampered their ability to do their job, while one third (33%) feel that not knowing where to find the most up-to-date information also contributes.

Unfortunately, poor information management and these kinds of sustained challenges are having negative effect on employees. So much so that nearly half (44%) feel that it is having an impact on their mental well-being and stress levels. In addition, two in five (38%) indicate it is having a detrimental effect on their performance at work, a third (33%) feel it is negatively impacting their overall job satisfaction and four in ten (39%) say that it is having a direct impact on their work-life balance.

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