A study conducted by AI-powered market research platform AMPLYFI exposes the pervasive challenge of “information overload,” hindering businesses’ ability to drive growth, serve customers, and identify risks.

The study reveals that 62 percent of knowledge workers acknowledge a shortage of time to access the essential information required for effective job performance, reflecting the escalating struggle with the exponential surge in data.

AMPLYFI’s comprehensive research aimed to quantify the impact of this information paralysis on businesses, as they dedicate more time to searching for data and less time executing their roles.

The study unveils that knowledge workers spend an average of 7.7 hours per week, equivalent to a full workday, searching for crucial information.

Based on respondents’ average salaries, this amounts to an annual expenditure of £4.4 million for businesses in pursuit of insights and data essential for their operations.

Even after this extensive search, a significant 43 percent of decision-makers are unable to find the required resources on a weekly basis.

Paul Teather, CEO of AMPLYFI, commented on the study’s findings, emphasising the challenges posed by the rapid expansion of the internet and the resulting fragmentation of data. He stated, “Business leaders have a responsibility to provide more effective information gathering and storing processes for their workforce.”

Manual effort

Commissioned by AMPLYFI, independent research house Censuswide surveyed 1,500 decision-makers within businesses with a minimum of 250 employees.

The research further uncovered that 41 percent of knowledge workers keep between 6-10 tabs open in their internet browsers simultaneously, illustrating the significant manual effort invested in information search. Additionally, 57 percent of respondents reported encountering contradictions in data across different channels, creating uncertainty about which sources to trust.

Search engines (55%) emerged as the most common source of information, followed by networking and discussion (52%), and social media. Surprisingly, only 14 percent of respondents acknowledged accessing the deep web to aid business decision-making, despite it constituting approximately 90 percent of the internet.

Teather highlighted the consequences of neglecting the deep web, stating, “Omitting the deep web means teams are making critical decisions based on just a fraction of the information available.”

What about business risks?

Nearly half (48%) of decision-makers admitted that greater access to information could have prevented business risks at some point.

With streamlined research processes, respondents expressed their potential to drive business growth, enhance customer service, and identify ways to mitigate risks to the business.

Teather concluded optimistically, “AI is opening up new avenues for information gathering. Businesses can now harness a single source of information, conduct a lifetime of reading in 20 minutes, and create their own highly relevant content feeds, pulling from multiple sources across the internet. AI is ultimately allowing knowledge workers to put their fingerprint on the vast pool of data available.”





Amelia Brand is the Editor for HRreview, and host of the HR in Review podcast series. With a Master’s degree in Legal and Political Theory, her particular interests within HR include employment law, DE&I, and wellbeing within the workplace. Prior to working with HRreview, Amelia was Sub-Editor of a magazine, and Editor of the Environmental Justice Project at University College London, writing and overseeing articles into UCL’s weekly newsletter. Her previous academic work has focused on philosophy, politics and law, with a special focus on how artificial intelligence will feature in the future.