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Brits are only productive 4.5 hours a day

“There aren’t enough hours in the day.” How many times have you heard these words muttered in exasperation by a colleague, or even yourself? It may be true that we’re busy, but a new study from Microsoft Office 2016 has found that the average British adult admits to being productive for just four and a half hours a day.

More than three quarters (76%) of respondents revealed they spend time procrastinating rather than getting on with their daily tasks. Those aged 35-44 were found to be the most productive age group at five hours and six minutes, while the 18 to 24-year-olds were the least (three hours and 48 minutes). Glasgow came in as the UK’s most productive city at five hours, with Sheffield being the least at three hours and 54 minutes.

It was found that collaborating with others resulted in nearly an extra hour of productivity per day compared to those who work alone (four hours and 18 minutes versus five hours and six minutes). Over the course of a year, this adds up to more than 200 hours.

Recognising the benefits of collaborating, 81% are now working together on at least one aspect of their lives and nearly half (41%) are doing so on a daily basis. Collaborators admitted to working in teams more in their personal lives (62%) on projects such as holiday planning, family outings and DIY than for professional reasons (49%).

The study comes following the launch of Microsoft Office 2016, which introduces a host of new features to the productivity suite aimed to make teamwork seamless and take the work out of working together. New features include real-time co-authoring, allowing multiple users to feed into a single document from wherever they are and on any device while seeing what others are writing as it happens, Skype integration built into each app for easy communication and team organisational tools such as Office 365 Groups.