One in four British execs suffer from access anxiety

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Mobile devices are proliferating in modern office environments as remote and mobile working becomes more common. However, new independent research has revealed today that one in four British executives now suffer from access anxiety as a result. This situation occurs when they consistently experience difficulties accessing corporate IT resources on their mobile devices.

The Access Anxiety research released today is based on the results of a survey of British business executives and IT managers. It was done in June 2004 by IRB on behalf of Citrix, a leading global provider of access infrastructure solutions.

The topline results were:

Business travel stress: Access anxiety was listed as the third most stressful aspect of business travel. Flight delays were the top complaint

Time wasting: It takes British workers on average 3.8 minutes to gain external access to email when working offsite, and mobile workers who require external access on a daily basis waste up to 24 hours annually getting connected

Workplace stress: 58% of those suffering from access anxiety also felt it was a major cause of work place stress

Access cold spots: The countryside is the worst place for gaining external access to company email and other IT resources, closely followed by trains, while boats are third

Job package component: 32% of executives also said they take into account quality of laptops and other mobile devices provided by prospective employees when considering a job offer. Furthermore, 14% said they would even take a pay cut in exchange for better external access. Finally, when rating the importance of external access on a scale of one to ten where one is not important at all and ten is very important, it was given an average of seven

IT admin drain: 70% of IT managers said they get numerous calls every week from employees unable to gain external access to company IT resources and 5% said they spend up to a day of their time every week fielding and resolving these calls

Lewis Gee, MD of Citrix UK and Ireland said: It is clear that there has been great leaps in mobile technology in terms of hardware in the workplace. However, the research by IRB suggests companies may need to focus on developing more efficient access infrastructures to facilitate mobile working.

Professor Cary Cooper CBE, professor of organisational psychology and health at Lancaster University Management School, commented: Britain is the hardest working nation in Europe and companies have been trying to implement mobile technology as a result. With the aim of enabling more flexible working from the home or mobile working to provide greater work life/balance and lighten the load.

However, workers struggling to use the mobile technology, end up wasting that precious time they were hoping to save for a better work life/balance, and become stressed as a result.

In practice, an efficient access infrastructure should provide workers with secure, easy and instant access to enterprise applications and information from anywhere, at anytime, using any device, over any connection. These infrastructures are usually based on a combination of software and hardware provided by Access Infrastructure solutions providers like Citrix.

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