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'Always-on' ramps up work stress, damages etiquette: Regus Malaysia study

AvantiKumar | Jan. 27, 2015
Regus Malaysia's Vijayakumar Tangarasan said 67% of Malaysian workers attend to work out of office more often than five years ago.

Vijayakumar Tangarasan, Country Managerr Regus Malaysia  

Photo - Vijayakumar Tangarasan, Country Manager at Regus Malaysia


Always-on connectivity is continuing to increase stress as 67 percent of Malaysian workers attend to work matters out of office more than five years ago, according to global workplace provider Regus.

Speaking of the company's latest survey, Regus Malaysia's country manager Vijayakumar Tangarasan said the Malaysian finding reflects a global trend with "a significant proportion of workers worldwide finding that their jobs now regularly intrude on their free time."

Tangarasan said the survey of 22,000 workers across more than 100 countries showed that work pressures are frequently to blame for distracting their attention from other important tasks, such as driving and increasing stress levels.

He said that "two out of five globally find themselves worrying about work while they should be concentrating on the road, saying that they need to pull over to attend to a piece of work that just won't wait much more frequently than just five years ago."

"In Malaysia, work is also increasingly interrupting home life with 84 percent seeing business use of instant messaging increasing as a result," said Tangarasan.

Damaging etiquette

Tangarasan said: "The global work environment is changing and technology, especially with the use of mobile and instant messaging, has huge benefits in enabling business people to be more flexible about how and where they work."

"However, it is important that being always-connected is beneficial to productivity and not a distraction for workers when they are driving or living their personal lives," he said. "For this reason businesses need to think carefully about the options they give workers to respond to their demands swiftly, but also safely and effectively, such as providing them with access to professional drop-in locations even when they are driving."

Tangarasan added that on top of the intrusion into personal time, the expectation that professionals "should be always checking their email is damaging business etiquette with 74 percent of Malaysian workers reporting that they are required to accommodate last minute changes to meetings all too often."


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