LAS VEGAS, KNOWLEDGE15 ‑ April 21, 2015 ‑ ServiceNow
(NYSE:NOW), the enterprise cloud company, today released the results
of a new report, “Today’s
State of Work: The Productivity Drain,” revealing that managers
in corporate environments spend nearly two days a week on unnecessary
day‑to‑day administrative tasks that are not core to their jobs. This
unleashes the possibility for exponential impact on an organization’s
top and bottom lines as employees have less time to just do their jobs
and it takes more people to get the work done.
ServiceNow surveyed nearly 1,000 managers in the United States and
the United Kingdom to understand the effectiveness of the tools and
processes in their corporate environment. The company asked them about
how those tools and processes impact their individual and team
effectiveness. The survey focused on four specific processes or
services common in any corporate environment: setting up a new
employee, opening a purchase order, requesting tech support and
ordering marketing collateral. The results were consistent across all demographics.
Information workers spend as much time on unnecessary tasks as they
do their jobs.
- 9 in 10 managers, regardless of company size or team function,
spent time on administrative tasks outside their core job
- Those tasks include tasks such as providing status
updates, filling out forms, requesting support and updating
- On average, they spent more than 15 hours or 2
days a week on routine administrative tasks, with 20% spending 3
days or more.
- As a result, half of those surveyed said they
did not have time for more strategic initiatives.
The tools used in the work environment are ill‑suited for the tasks
they need to complete.
- More than 80% of those surveyed rely primarily on inefficient,
manual tools such as email, telephone calls and personal visits to
get work done.
- Email was the top method used for opening a
purchase order (53%) and onboarding a new employee (46%).
- Nearly half of the respondents agree that using email and
spreadsheets for managing work reducing productivity at their
- Fewer than 1 in 10 surveyed reported using
automation to improve the efficiency of these repetitive tasks.
- Even larger organizations and more technology‑aware functions
like IT are still using the same manual tools.
“Email was never intended to run a company’s business processes,”
said Dave Wright, ServiceNow chief strategy officer. “It is a
communication vehicle that has been bastardized to fill a gap that
exists in the systems permeated throughout the enterprise.”
The productivity drain is compounded by the complexity of business
processes and the interdependencies between departments.
- More than 90% said the inefficiency of other departments
directly impacts their individual and team productivity.
average, respondents reported having to deal with 4 different
departments for the enterprise services common in almost every
- More than 30% said 5 to 10 departments are
typically involved in getting a new employee set up for their first
- More than 30% also said that it takes more than 10
individual interactions such as emails, phone calls or personal
visits to make sure the company is ready for that new employee’s
“While everyone agreed that productivity depends on how smoothly
internal business processes run, the survey showed those processes are
akin to a navigating a labyrinth,” said Wright. “Knowing when you have
work to do, and being able to measure how effectively you perform that
work, makes the whole organization more effective.”
The impact is exponential for entire organizations.
- In an organization with 5,000 managers, these unnecessary
tasks and inefficient processes take up 4 million hours per year –
that’s the equivalent of 2,000 full‑time employees.
- Collectively across the United States, companies are spending
$575 billion a year on these unnecessary tasks and
- That equals 3.3% of the gross domestic
product of the United States or approximately the combined annual
profits of America’s 50 largest public companies.1
Workers feel they could be more productive if the technology in the
office were more like the technologies they use at home and on the go.
- 75% of those surveyed agree that work processes and systems
should work more like those they experience as consumers.
- They agreed that they want the simplicity and self‑service
control and transparency that they experience with popular online
services they use in their personal lives.
- 9 in 10 surveyed
said that automating these inefficient processes would make them
These issues can be overcome.
- Organizations can easily streamline and automate their
internal business services today to get back this wasted time.
- If a company can whiteboard a process from request to approvals
to fulfillment, they can build — and automate — practically any
business process in HR, finance, IT, legal, marketing and more.
- Automation can help identify where time is being wasted and
where processes can be improved.
- By adopting service
management software and practices, organizations can replace emails,
phone calls and spreadsheets with automated workflows that are as
simple as the consumer services they use at home.
technology exists today and early adopters are showing the way
- For more information, please visit our site.
“This survey points to the future of work that will leave behind
this utter nonsense,” said Wright.
ServiceNow commissioned Lawless Research to design and conduct a
study about the state of work in companies with 500 or more employees.
Between March 10 and March 15, 2015, 915 managers who supervise at
least one employee completed the 10‑minute online survey (610 in the
US and 305 in the UK). The online survey was hosted by Qualtrics and
Survey Sampling International provided respondents from their online
panel. The margin of error for the study is ±3.2 percentage points at
the 95 percent level of confidence. Tests of significant difference
were conducted at the .01 level (99% probability that the difference
is real, not by chance).
ServiceNow is changing the way people work. With a
service‑orientation toward the activities, tasks and processes that
make up day‑to‑day work life, we help the modern enterprise operate
faster and be more scalable than ever before. Customers use our
service model to define, structure and automate the flow of work,
removing dependencies on email and spreadsheets to transform the
delivery and management of services for the enterprise. ServiceNow
provides service management for every department in the enterprise
including IT, human resources, facilities, field service and more. We
deliver a ‘lights‑out, light‑speed’ experience through our enterprise
cloud – built to manage everything as a service. To find out how,
ServiceNow and the ServiceNow logo are registered trademarks of
ServiceNow. All other brand and product names are trademarks or
registered trademarks of their respective holders.