The average New Zealand worker spends between 15 per cent and 21 per cent of their time doing work of no value dealing with emails, company red tape and technology woes, according to Ernst & Young.
Its Productivity Pulse Survey has found workers think 15 per cent of their time is spent on wasted activities.
Ernst & Young partner Braden Dickson says employers put the figure higher at 21 per cent, at the cost of $19 billion a year to the economy.
The report suggests companies stop wasteful, bureaucratic and non-value work, improve technology, develop talent and innovate more.
The survey of 1200 workers in New Zealand finds about 27.3 per cent of workers are super achievers who only spend 11 per cent of their time on wasteful activities.
It identifies 7.3 per cent of the workforce as "lost souls" who spend 27 per cent of their time on purely wasteful activities.
"In our first pulse survey, a clear picture emerges of hard-working and motivated New Zealanders," Mr Dickson said."But look closer, and it's obvious there is an unacceptable level of waste in our working day."
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