Asana, a leading work management platform for teams, today released its annual Anatomy of Work Index, an in-depth analysis into how people spend time at work and the factors shaping those habits. Despite organizations’ best efforts to recreate what worked in the office in a remote setting, global workers are losing 60 percent of their time on work coordination rather than the skilled, strategic jobs they’ve been hired to do.
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Organizations of every size, and across all industries, are losing countless hours to work about work – the time wasted on searching for information, switching between apps, and holding status meetings. As enterprises grow, so does their work about work – organizations of 5,000+ employees lose 63% of their time to it every week.
Conducted by Sapio Research on behalf of Asana, the Anatomy of Work Index 2021, surveyed the behaviors and attitudes of 13,123 knowledge workers across Australia/New Zealand; France; Germany; Japan; Singapore; the U.K.; and the U.S., to explore how individuals, teams, and entire organizations can bring clarity to the chaos of work, reset for resilience, and flourish as they move forward.
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In a year marked by distraction and disruption, lack of clarity on roles, ownership and purpose of deliverables, combined with more messages, meetings and tools to navigate, is fueling troubling trends.
An overwhelming 87 percent of employees are working late—455 hours every year, compared to 242 hours in 2019. And while teams are having fewer ad-hoc conversations, this hasn’t resulted in shorter working days. Casual chats have been replaced with unnecessary meetings, costing individuals 157 hours per year. Additional key global findings include:
- One in four (26%) deadlines are missed each week as a result of unrealistic expectations and unclear processes.
- Teams are spending 30% more time on duplication of work and work deemed a waste of time year-over-year. New hires spend nearly twice as much time on duplicated work as their tenured teammates.
- As the work day extends, 3 in 4 employees are struggling to disconnect from work with 7 in 10 experiencing burnout at least once in 2020.
- Nearly two-thirds, (62%) experienced imposter syndrome in 2020.
- Nearly 80% of workers who started a new job during the pandemic report experiencing imposter syndrome.
- Experiences of imposter syndrome are also more common for parents and caregivers with children at home (67%) compared to those without (57%).
- Around the world, the top three barriers to productivity are:
- Having too much work to do
- Having to respond to too many emails and messages pings
- Having too many meetings and video calls
“Before COVID-19, there was a rapidly rising business imperative for increased clarity and alignment. Clarity is really difficult for teams to achieve even when they’re in the office, but it’s particularly challenging when working remotely,” said Dustin Moskovitz, CEO, Asana. “Going forward, some companies will continue working from home, some will return to the office, and some will do everything else in between. Across that entire spectrum, Asana has an important role to play in driving clarity for teams, no matter where they do their work.”