Why Does My Organization Need to Worry about App Fatigue Among Employees?

Zachary Kitchen
March 11, 2023

Technology has become integral to the modern workplace in today's fast-paced digital age. From communication to collaboration, there seems to be an app for everything, as organizations have become heavily reliant on software and applications to streamline business processes and increase productivity. However, while these apps are designed to make our lives easier, they can also lead to app fatigue, a phenomenon affecting many employees worldwide.

App fatigue occurs when employees are overwhelmed by the sheer number of apps they use on a daily basis. This may seem harmless; however, they pose a significant issue for businesses. According to New Independent Survey, 74% of employees have over five apps open at once, while 16% have over 15 open simultaneously. Another recent survey found that 58% of employees reported feeling overwhelmed by the number of apps they use at work. 

Each app has its own set of alerts, notifications, and messages, leading to constant distractions that can hamper productivity and increase stress levels, employee burnout, and security risks. As a result, knowing about and addressing app fatigue is essential for organizations that want to ensure their employees are able to work efficiently, effectively, and securely. 

Continue reading to find out why your organization needs to worry about app fatigue and the best ways to handle it.

What is App Fatigue?

In the simplest definition, app fatigue is the frustrated, burnt-out, and overwhelming feeling employees feel due to the number of applications they use on a daily basis to carry out their tasks/jobs. 

In today's business setting, employees are required to use various apps to carry out multiple tasks, such as project management, document sharing, communication, time tracking, customer service, and many more. As a result, the constant bombardment of notifications, alerts, and messages can leave employees feeling stressed, distracted, tired, and unproductive. Some even develop a fear of the notification sound. This, therefore, can result in productivity decline, decreased job satisfaction, and high turnover.

Although the use of apps in businesses is to make employees' work easier and faster, there are so many things that organizations should worry about and not overlook.

The Problem Caused by App Fatigue

Every phone user spends quality time on their phone, and much of that time is spent toggling through apps. It is believed that for every hour, we toggle through apps over 10 times, leading to minor app fatigue. However, for organizations, the consequences of app fatigue can be severe. Below are the problems caused by app fatigue in your employees:

1. Decreased Productivity

When employees are constantly interrupted by notifications and messages from various apps, their attention is diverted from their primary tasks. This can lead to decreased productivity as employees struggle to stay focused and complete their work. According to a study, employees are interrupted every 10.5 minutes on average, and it takes approximately 23 minutes for employees to refocus on their work after an interruption. As a result, these multiple interruptions may cause them to lose several hours of productivity each week.

2. Decreased Employee Satisfaction

App fatigue can lead to decreased employee satisfaction. When employees are overwhelmed by the number of apps they use, they may feel like they are not able to use their time effectively, leading to frustration and dissatisfaction with their jobs. Over time, this can lead to high turnover rates and difficulty attracting top talent.

3. Security Risks

Using multiple apps increases the risk of security breaches. Each app is a potential entry point for hackers to access sensitive information. As employees use more apps, the likelihood of a security breach increases. Additionally, employees may not be diligent about updating their apps, leaving them vulnerable to known security vulnerabilities. This can result in significant financial and reputational damage to the organization.

4. Increased IT Costs

Because of the usage of many apps, the IT department may have difficulty managing and supporting them all. As each app requires updates, maintenance, and troubleshooting, it can lead to increased IT costs. Also, if employees are using unsupported apps, they may encounter issues that the IT departments may not be equipped to handle. This can lead to frustration for both employees and IT departments.

5. Decreased Collaboration

When employees use many apps simultaneously, keeping track of who has access to certain information can be challenging. Due to this, employees may not be able to communicate effectively with each other. This can lead to miscommunications and misunderstandings, therefore hindering collaboration and teamwork.

How Organizations Can Control App Fatigue

Here are some strategies your organization can implement, with the help of managed IT service providers, to address and control app fatigue:

1. Conduct a technology audit

To address and control app fatigue, the first step you need to take is to carry out proactive maintenance and take stock of all the applications your organization is currently using and evaluate their effectiveness. Consider whether they are still necessary, if they can be replaced, or if they can be integrated with other apps to reduce redundancy.

2. Use app integrations

You can use app integrations to connect multiple apps, allowing your employees to access information from multiple apps in one place.

3. Streamline workflows

Once you have identified all necessary applications, streamline the workflows by automating repetitive tasks and reducing the number of apps employees are required to use. This can be done by integrating apps or using a single platform that can handle multiple tasks.

4. Implement app usage policies

Implement app usage policies that outline approved apps for use and how they should be used. This can help employees understand which apps are essential for their work and reduce the number of unnecessary apps they use.

5. Prioritize app security

Prioritizing app security is a must. Ensure all used apps are up-to-date and have the latest security patches installed.

6. Emphasize data security

Ensure your employees understand the importance of data security and are trained on best practices for protecting sensitive information. This can reduce the risk of data breaches and other security incidents.

Need Help Streamlining Your Digital Workflows?

App fatigue is a significant issue that organizations need to address in Los Angeles to boost the productivity and satisfaction of their employees. By addressing app fatigue, organizations can improve productivity, and employee satisfaction, as well as attract top talent. Are you looking for managed service providers to help with app fatigue? Look no further than Digital Crisis, LLC. We support small & medium professional firms in Houston with a myriad of managed services to keep your business running. Contact us today!

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