Nearly half of employees report that use of social tools like as Yammer, Microsoft Office 365, Microsoft Lync and Microsoft Dynamics CRM at work help increase their productivity, but more than 30 percent of companies underestimate the value of these tools and often restrict their use, according to study conducted for Microsoft by research firm Ipsos. The survey conducted among 9,908 information workers in 32 countries, also found that 39 percent of employees feel there is not enough collaboration in their workplaces, and 40 percent believe social tools help in teamwork. Nearly 31 percent said they are willing to spend their own money to buy social tools.
Employees in the Asia-Pacific region were most likely to attribute higher productivity levels to the increased use of social tools, followed by Latin America and Europe. Employees in Latin America, however, were most likely to credit social tools with greater collaboration in the workplace, followed by the Asia-Pacific region and Europe. Greater proportions of workers in Latin America and the Asia-Pacific region are using social tools, and with greater frequency. In contrast, those in North America and Europe have been slower in adopting social tools. Financial services and government employees are most likely to say their company places restrictions on the use of social tools, likely due to the high level of regulation in those sectors.
Professionals in financial services (74 percent) and government (72 percent) are more likely than those in other fields to say these restrictions are due to security concerns, while those working in retail (59 percent) and travel and hospitality (57 percent) are more likely to blame productivity loss. Men are more likely than women to attribute higher productivity levels to social tools in a professional setting. Women are more likely than men to believe their company restricts the use of social tools. Men are more likely than women to say these restrictions are due to security concerns, while women are more likely to blame productivity loss.
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