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European workers want wearable devices to supercharge productivity

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Indeed, 18 per cent of employees claim they already have access to a form of the tech at their workplace.

For the purpose of the study, wearables include platforms such as augmented reality headsets, biometric identification and holographic video conferencing, all of which ADP claims will “create a wealth of opportunity for businesses to further improve productivity, connectivity and security”.

Productivity in Britain is being given a big push by the government at present, with both business secretary Sajid Javid and chancellor George Osborne promoting a series of new plans to solve the problem.

Wearables haven’t been mentioned so far, but the government has introduced a £10m fund to get businesses and local authorities collaborating on the Internet of Things. Meanwhile a £210,000 pot is open to SMEs developing business solutions with virtual reality and augmented reality, which has seen John Lewis and Crossrail back the project.

According to the ADP research, 33 per cent of workers would use devices to organise their workload based on times they consider to be the most productive. Another third would manage stress with the tech to manage caffeine intakes and mindfulness, while 28 per cent would like to be alerted if their energy levels decline. 

With wellbeing in mind, identifying health risks and medical advice would be important for an additional 28 per cent.

“Wearables present a major opportunity for companies looking to boost productivity, efficiency and employee engagement,” Annabel Jones, HR director at ADP UK.

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“We can expect to see a number of new tools enter the workplace in the coming years, which will not only have the potential to create a fully connected workforce but also enhance learning and development practices.”

More than half of employees are concerned about their personal data when it comes to wearables though, with 52 per cent concerned about what employers would be able to access.

It was revealed that Brits are the most hesitant to use the devices as 20 per cent said they would avoid the tech completely, an attitude that declined to ten per cent in France, and eight per cent in Germany and the Netherlands. 

Outside of the workplace, however, most UK shoppers would be happy to pay for goods with wearables – while one executive solved whether the Apple Watch is a business tool or luxury toy.

Jones concluded: “Multinational companies that are planning to utilise wearable technology should be aware of the cultural differences and attitudes across Europe. Employers that successfully consider changes in attitudes and also develop a coherent and transparent framework for exposing data findings will improve employees working patterns.”

Image: Shutterstock

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