BT Business reports that digital stalking turns off UK business
Released on: March 10, 2009, 7:48 am
Author: Dan Thomas
BT Business released the results of new research that show
that companies are in danger of driving away business and wasting time
on unproductive communications because they are failing to understand
customers' different digital personality types when they are dealing
through email or other communications channels.
Nearly a third (30%) of the workers surveyed* feel harassed by the sheer number of
messages people send them while many also admit that they themselves are never sure
of the best way to contact people, implying that companies are missing out on the
opportunity to unify their communications technology, and on the personal and
business benefits that can bring.
At the same time, workers appear to be increasingly managing working relationships
through social and business networks. One in 10 people surveyed have customers and
clients as friends on personal social networking sites such as Facebook. This trend
is particularly true for younger people, with almost one in six (15 per cent) of the
18 to 24s surveyed saying they use or would use these tools to manage customer
relationships, compared to just two per cent of 45s or over. Similarly, six times as
many 18 to 24 year olds use or would use microblogs such as Twitter to manage
customer relationships compared to 45s or over.
These are some of the key findings of the BT Business research which sought to
understand how people are using modern communications tools to build business
relationships. The research involved input from one of the UK's leading
psychologists Gladeana McMahon.
Gladeana explained: "It's important that people recognise the difference between
communicating virtually and face-to-face. We often read others' body language to
gauge what they are really saying, adapting our response to get a better result. In
the virtual world we don't have the same clues to help us modify our behaviour so
we must try to identify 'digital personality types' in other ways to ensure
business success. Similar to people thinking before they speak, people need to think
before they click to avoid inappropriate communications."
"It's great to see businesses taking up new technology to build profitable
relationships but many are missing out on the opportunity to get rid of the clutter
and unify their communications," said Bill Murphy, managing director at BT
"Unified communications can empower employees to intelligently tune their communications to the
preferences and behaviour patterns of different personalities by creating a sense of
presence in a virtual world. With three quarters of the UK's small businesses now
operating some form of flexible working, to maximise the benefits it's important
for businesses to look at how they can help staff to be more productive, while at
the same time saving money by eliminating wasteful messaging."
Notes to Editors:
All figures are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 3473 workers in
organisations with less than 500 employees and employed for at least 3 months.
Fieldwork was undertaken between 2nd and 8th December 2008. The survey was carried
out online. The figures have not been weighted.
BT is one of the world's leading providers of communications solutions and services
operating in 170 countries. BT consists principally of four lines of business: BT
Global Services, Openreach, BT Retail and BT Wholesale.
BT Business understands the challenges that small and medium sized businesses face
in the current climate, and supports cost control, improved productivity and winning
business through core product collections including business broadband, internet domains, web hosting, data and voice networks, IT solutions and mobile services.
Contact Details: Dan Thomas
Senior press officer
BT Group Newsroom
81 Newgate Street
020 7356 5369