US companies are leaking money due to miscommunication. Breakdowns, bottlenecks, and misunderstandings are significant challenges in the hybrid and remote work era. A study by Grammarly conducted with The Harris Poll found that companies with 500 employees lose $6.25M each year to resolving communication issues— and these costs only increase with additional headcount.
Miscommunication is a preventable cost to the business. As the amount of written and digital communication taking place in the workplace continues to increase, businesses must prioritize solutions to eliminate miscommunication at the source.
The enemy of productivity
Grammarly’s study found that knowledge workers spend nearly twenty hours per week on written communication. Despite all this practice, 72% of business leaders acknowledge that their teams struggle to communicate effectively.
The move to hybrid and remote work has only exacerbated the problem. Four in five business leaders are concerned about how the shift in working models will continue to impact employees’ communication ability.
According to a 2022 Loom survey, 91% of workers report having their digital messages misunderstood or misinterpreted at work. These misunderstandings lead to doubt and delays—47% of respondents said they overthink emails and messages they send. Employees spend time re-reading messages to check how they’ll be received, spell-checking their language, or sending follow-up messages to clear up confusion.
In Grammarly’s report, nearly half of respondents say they struggle with timely responses (49%), understanding messages from others (26%), and identifying the proper tone to use (32%). These challenges lead to individual productivity losses. At scale, this problem adds up to thousands of hours lost and a significant bottom-line impact.
Grammarly’s study also revealed that poor communication results in about 7.5 hours of wasted time each week per employee. Based on an average salary of approximately $67K, that’s over $12.5K in lost productivity per employee each year. Multiply that across your organization, and you’ve got a pretty big line item hiding in plain sight.
Additional miscommunication risks for revenue
The negative impacts of miscommunication reach every part of your organization. Our report also found that nearly nine in ten business leaders reported missed deadlines, increased timelines, and decreased customer satisfaction due to miscommunication.
When employee productivity decreases, progress stalls along with top-line revenue growth. Spinning wheels can gain traction with the right tools. Individuals need AI writing tools that enable them to write with greater confidence. Grammarly Business fills that gap, accelerating productivity and increasing writing confidence for teams by offering in-line writing suggestions that tighten up writing for clarity and even ensure messages strike the right tone. In fact, 76% of users say it helps them get more work done.
For example, Frost & Sullivan, a global market research and business consulting firm, leverages Grammarly Business to ensure its reports meet their high-quality standards. These reports directly translate to profitability. With Grammarly Business, Frost & Sullivan cut editing time by 66%, allowing them to accelerate their efficiency and complete more than 500 revenue-generating projects in one year.
Miscommunication, morale, and the impact on the bottom line
Another benefit of improved communication is employee engagement, which can directly impact revenue. Harvard Business Review found that when employee satisfaction moved from the bottom quartile to the top quartile, revenue grew by more than 50%.
Grammarly’s study with The Harris Poll found that communication issues most often resulted in stress at work. As communication hurdles grow in frequency, workplace friction increases, causing greater stress and lower employee engagement. Clear communication can help reduce workplace stress. In fact, 80% of users say Grammarly Business reduces their anxiety when they are writing to their peers.
Miscommunication between leaders and their direct reports also causes workplace stress. According to Gallup, an employee’s relationship with their manager is a primary factor attributed to job satisfaction. Gallup also reports that US employee engagement sits at just 33% right now. Grammarly’s study with The Harris Poll found that only 62% of knowledge workers feel that their direct managers communicate effectively, yet 82% of business leaders are confident in communicating with their direct reports. This gap illustrates a big opportunity for leaders to increase employee engagement through better communication.
How to rewrite your communication story
Bottlenecks and communication barriers are a significant risk to the business. It’s time for strategic action to reclaim the 20% of employees’ time lost to miscommunication with easy-to-adopt solutions.
AI-powered tools like Grammarly Business augment human intelligence by providing real-time, in-line writing suggestions with unique features such as brand tones and custom style guides. When employees gain access to these tools, they can communicate on-brand more confidently and speed up their workflows without sacrificing quality.
Tools are only as good as they are simple to implement and use. Revitalize your team’s productivity and confidence with intuitive and ubiquitous technology. You still have time this year to stave off unforeseen costs and set your teams up for success in 2023.