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The Month in Numbers


Four in 10 UK workers are losing 3 hours per week (or 6.5 days per year) due to issues with legacy PCs, reveals a survey conducted by Intel to promote Intel Evo vPro platform-based laptops. Almost half of all employees polled said a more powerful or upgraded device would enable them to be more productive in their roles, with 37% saying they could recover more than six hours per week of lost or unproductive time. Key device requirements include connectivity, such as fast Wi-Fi (cited by 76% of employees and 88% of IT decision-makers); better video quality for hybrid working (66% and 81% respectively); and a thin, ultralight design (60% and 63%).


Automated traffic makes up nearly two-thirds of all internet traffic (64%), with bad bots accounting for 39% of the total, claims Barracuda Networks in a new report, Bot attacks: Top Threats and Trends – Insights into the growing number of automated attacks. Bad bots include basic web scrapers and attack scripts, as well as advanced persistent bots that try to evade standard defences and carry out malicious activities under the radar. North America accounts for 67% of bad bot traffic, followed by Europe (22%) and Asia (7.5%).


In the last two years, more than half (58%) of manufacturing companies have increased their investment in workforce health and wellbeing, with 50% increasing their spend since the start of the pandemic, claims Make UK. More than a quarter (29%) of companies now have a board director responsible for wellbeing and 22% a senior manager dedicated to the role. Almost one quarter (23%) claim that productivity has improved as a result; 21% have experienced fewer days lost to staff absences; and 16% have improved staff retention. In the last year, just 5% of organisations have cut their staff wellbeing budgets.


A year of hybrid working has done wonders for office worker empowerment, according to a survey of 2,000 UK and US office workers by Kadence, formerly Chargifi. Almost two-thirds (62%) of respondents say they now feel more trusted to do their job effectively; 64% feel a greater sense of trust because they’re not micromanaged as much as before the pandemic; 63% feel free to do their work in a time that suits them; and, since gaining greater autonomy over their working week, half feel more motivated to do a better quality job (51%) and go the extra mile (48%). 


Two thirds of organisations have raised employee awareness around security threats (67%) and provided training on cybersecurity (66%) to meet the challenges of remote working. Even so, 76% of IT purchases are being made without direct approval from IT teams (source: Digital Readiness Survey, ManageEngine, the enterprise IT management division of Zoho Corporation).


Figures from Refinitiv show that 2021 is set to be a record year for global dealmaking, with almost $4tn of M&A deals already agreed since the start of the year. August alone saw $500bn of transactions globally, up from $289bn in the same month last year and $275bn in 2019. The surge in deals is bring driven by tech, accounting for 21% of M&A activity. So far this year, tech companies have completed 8,742 transactions worth $832bn, up from $301bn worth of deals agreed in the same period last year and $291bn in 2019. Tom Henriksson, General Partner at OpenOcean, said: “In the next few decades, data-driven technologies like quantum computing and artificial intelligence have huge potential for significant growth, delivering the more connected, sustainable and fairer society customers want in the post-pandemic world. Data is disrupting every industry, driving innovation in everything from customer-facing applications to behind-the-scenes business intelligence to improve decision-making.”

6,000,000 WHO ARE YOU? 

At least six million people in the UK can be classified as ‘ID Challenged’, meaning they are likely to struggle to access government services such as Universal Credit, claims the Open Identity Exchange (OIX). This is because Government and private sector services require users to have either a passport, a driving licence or an online banking/ non-bank credit account and to provide evidence of these online. OIS is urging the Government to increase inclusion by extending the data sets used for identification on services like GOV.UK Verify to include NHS Patient Numbers, National Insurance Numbers and Council Tax bills.


Global parcel volumes rose by 27% in 2020 to 131.2 billion, according to the Pitney Bowes global Parcel Shipping Index. This equates to 4,160 parcels shipped per second and an average of 34 parcels per person. The Index expects parcel volumes to double to 266 billion by 2026. In the UK, 5 billion parcels were generated in 2020, 33% more than in 2019. This gave the UK the highest number of parcels per capita – 74, up from 56 in 2019. Prior to the pandemic, parcel volume was growing by an average of 8% per year, but in 2020 this growth rate more than quadrupled to 33%. Pitney Bowes expects UK parcel volumes to grow by 10-14% this year to 5.4-6 billion parcels, rising again to 7.5-8.5 billion parcels in 2026.

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