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Time spent searching cuts into company productivity

Butler Group reports up to 10% of staff costs are lost, because employees can't find the right information to do their jobs.

By , Network World
October 20, 2006 10:26 AM ET

Network World - Employees performing ineffective searches and wasting time looking for information can cost companies up to 10% in salary expenses, research shows.

Butler Group, a London-based IT research and analysis organization, this week released a report titled "Enterprise Search and Retrieval," which concludes that "ineffective search and discovery strategies are hampering business competitiveness, impairing service delivery and putting companies at risk." Specifically, the research firm contends that as much as 10% of a company's salary costs is "frittered away" as employees scramble to find adequate and accurate information to perform their overall jobs and complete assigned tasks.

"Over 50% of staff costs are now allocated to employees performing so-called information work," said Richard Edwards, senior research analyst and co-author the 240-page report, in a press release. "Employees are suffering from both information overload and information underload. As a result, the typical information worker now spends up to one-quarter of his or her day searching for the right information to complete a given task."

The lost productivity and wasted salary cost findings support Butler Group's stance that search and retrieval tools should be part of enterprise companies' IT arsenal, as the technologies "enable organizations to exploit the information assets they already have. They also enable companies to identify opportunities, reduce risk and garner insight," according to the press release.

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