84% of large businesses and organisations in the UK have lost working days due to a lack of effective contact tracing, according to a new study commissioned by Contact Harald.
The resulting lost productivity is estimated to have cost the country’s economy over £11 billion in the last 12 months, equivalent to 4.3 million working days, the contract tracing tool said.
The study, which looked at 500 UK companies employing over 100 staff, found an average cost of £660,193 per business due to absent workers isolating and waiting for test results, following potential contact with COVID-19.
This includes time off for those who thought they might have been in close proximity to someone who tested positive for the virus.
Amid reports of an estimated 600,000 jobs lost according to UKHospitality, and 14,800 retail store closures because of the pandemic, the research puts into sharp focus the need for efficient, accurate contact tracing if businesses are to remain profitable.
However, over a third of businesses (37%) in Britain claim to have found tracking potential contact cases difficult, or very difficult, suggesting more support is required in order to protect companies – and employees – as the world start operating again post the COVID-19 era.
Unsurprisingly, 93% of businesses surveyed said that a tech solution would have prevented days lost to potential COVID contact.
“Our research found that businesses could have reduced the amount of days lost as result of potential COVID by a third (33.5%) – if they had their affairs in order through contact tracking technology,” said Matt Denton, Contact Harald’s Founder and Head of Product.
“Tech solutions could therefore have saved businesses at least 1,451,170 lost working days.”