Tech is the new office perk, says a new survey of American workers

But most employees still see their companies falling on the dull side of the cutting edge. 

May 24, 2016 |

A recent survey of 1,003 U.S office workers finds a high percentage of them are pretty happy about their jobs, in terms of their own productivity and success. Image: Adobe's “Work in Progress” report.

American office workers love their jobs, and love them even more when the technology their companies use is viewed as being ahead of the curve.

A recent online survey of more than 1,000 office workers in the U.S., which Adobe conducted during two weeks last month, finds 70% saying they love what they do. And a remarkable 81% say that state-of-the-art technology was more important to them than an office’s design or on-site amenities.

Seven out of 10 U.S. workers believe technology improves the work-life balance, and 81% say technology helps them connect with colleagues more efficiently. Those respondents who think their company’s technology is “ahead of the curve” feel about twice as creative, motivated, and satisfied as respondents who work for companies with less-than-cutting edge technology.

The rub is that only 25% of the survey’s U.S. respondents think their company’s technology excels. Nevertheless, more than half (53%) expects technology to be handling more of their offices’ menial tasks—copying, filing, etc.—over the next two decades, even as 55% remain convinced their jobs could never be replaced by a machine.

In fact, there seems to be more than a hint of ambivalence about the benefits of technology among the 75% of respondents who are concerned that relationships and health suffer when people become to attached to their devices.

 

Technology trumps other office amenities in what keeps workers content. Image: Adobe's “Work in Progress” report.

 

The Adobe survey portrays an American workforce for which work and life are inseparable, almost to the point of obsession. More than half of the respondents say they’d keep working if they won the lottery. U.S. workers say they spend, on average, 78% of their waking hours during the work week and 41% of their days off thinking about their jobs. Indeed, 57% of respondents agree with the statement “work defines who I am.”

The desire to work is further punctuated by the finding that one in three U.S. office workers moonlights in jobs outside of his or her primary occupation, and that moonlighters are more likely to be happier and more optimistic than non-moonlighters.

However, 69% of U.S. workers also say they work multiple jobs because they need the money. Nearly three-fifths of American workers are likely to leave their jobs for a better opportunity. (That number is 50% even among people who say they profess love for their current job.)

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