The Technological Environment Of The Modern Workplace

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INTRODUCTION In the ever-advancing technological environment of the modern workplace, managers are forced to implement new policies and procedures to increase productivity (Otto et al. 154). Lee and Duffy claimed in their peer-reviewed article in Human Factors and Ergonomics in Manufacturing and Service Industries that this his increase in technology has created workplace systems such as the internet, e-mail and instant messaging that allow more multitasking and workplace interruptions. This technology allows workers to access their schedule instantly, hold meetings at their desk, constantly checking their phones for emails and phone calls. The availability of information at just a few finger taps has created an information overload in…show more content…
486). The researchers conducted several different types of tests, however, the Trial Making Test and the Digit Cancellations showed the adverse effects of a cell phone. This Trial Making Test or TMT consisted of drawing a line sequentially connecting between a number and a letter within a circle within a time frame. On average those with a cellphone present connected 3 fewer circles than those with a notebook with a significance of p< .05 (Thornton et al. 481-483). Thornton’s Digit Cancellation consisted of participants crossing out numbers in a row that totaled up to the proceeding adjacent number. The number of correct digit cancellations decreased by nearly 4 with a significance of .05. The digit cancellation shows a decrease in accuracy while the TMT shows a lower ability to perform. This decrease in performance was significant and consistent across genders, and age differences (Thornton et al. 483). Consistent results with such significance mean there are real world implications. The implications of these findings are very apparent considering the commonality of cellphones in the workplace today. Almost everyone has their cell phone on their desk while working, and this study shows that even if it is not one’s own cell phone or if it is in a “do not disturb” mode that it still distracts us while performing complicated tasks. Thornton discusses that even though measures
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