Posted

WhatIs.com defines employee productivity as “an assessment of the efficiency of a worker or group of workers.”

In essence, employee productivity measures how much valuable work an employee does for a company in a given period. Companies need employees with high productivity rates if they want to succeed.

Companies need productive employees to make a profit. However, most studies show employees are only productive about 60% of the time and are more likely to be productive working from home. Being interrupted every 3 minutes at work and ineffective meetings contribute to employees’ unproductivity. 

In this article, we’ll give you 15 interesting and helpful employee productivity statistics that are relevant today. Hopefully, you can use these statistics to implement new policies in your business and increase your workforce’s overall efficiency.

Employees Are More Likely To Be Productive at Home

Whether it’s because of the lack of noise and distractions usually associated with working in a crowded office, the refreshing elimination of daily commutes, or the increased comfort of self-declared introverts, four times the number of employees polled admit that they’re more productive when working from home

Employees are often distracted by coworkers, ringing phones, loud conversations, and people moving around in the workplace. Once an employee is distracted, it takes them an average of 23 minutes to refocus. When working from home, most of these distractions aren’t an issue.

Other employees, those self-described introverts, claim they can just get more done when they’re comfortable in their homes, away from the pressures of having to socialize and interact with others in the office. 

Still, others credit their increased productivity to not having to waste hours each day commuting back and forth to work. Because they have no commutes, they feel more comfortable and less bitter about working extra hours from home if they need to do so to finish a project.

The Average Employee Is Interrupted Every Three Minutes

It may take people 23 minutes to get refocused after an interruption, but luckily, interruptions don’t happen that often, right? Wrong!

According to a study conducted by researchers at the University of California, Irvine, employees are interrupted approximately every three minutes and five seconds. Let me repeat that: every three minutes and five seconds, and that’s followed by 23 minutes of trying to refocus. 

That means people are getting three minutes of work done for every 26 minutes they spend at the office. That’s almost unbelievable.

Work-From-Home Employees Are 52% Less Likely To Take Time off Work

I’ve already mentioned that employees are motivated to work harder. They also take less time off work. Work-from-home employees often continue working from home without calling in sick, and use less vacation and personal time.

86% of Employees Prefer To Work Alone

At least 86% of employees prefer to work alone whether they’re working from home or the office. Employees claim there are fewer distractions when they can separate themselves from others.

They also feel less pressure to behave or interact in specific ways and can focus entirely on their work. 

This independence also extends to projects. Many employees prefer to tackle projects solo than to be forced to rely on others to do their part of a collaborative project. In most cases, this is still true even if working alone means the employee must work harder.

The Average Office Worker Is Productive for Less Than 3 Hours a Day

In all career fields, the average worker is productive for 60% or less each day. For office workers, however, that percentage drops drastically. Research conducted by Voucher Cloud determined that the average office worker is only productive for two hours and 23 minutes each day

Assuming an eight-hour workday, office workers are generally unproductive for five hours and 37 minutes each day. That’s a massive chunk of time and employer’s money wasted every day. 

Freelancers Are Productive 36 Hours Each Week

In contrast to the typical office worker, the typical freelancer is productive for about 36 hours each week. If you assume freelancers are working five-day weeks like most people, that averages out to over seven hours of productivity a day. 

They work harder than people in other professions because there’s a direct correlation between the time they spend working and how much they get paid. Inefficient freelancers don’t make much money; it’s as simple as that.

remote-worker-meetings illustration

Meetings Are Extremely Unproductive

Although meetings aren’t always a gigantic waste of time, research has shown that they aren’t always productive either. One study conducted by Atlassian yielded the following shocking results about meetings:

  • 91% of employees daydream in meetings
  • 39% of employees have slept in meetings
  • 96% of people have missed at least one “mandatory” meeting
  • 73% of people worked on other work while in a meeting
  • 50% of employees consider meetings wasted time
  • 89% of employees complain about “ineffective or poorly organized meetings”

That’s quite a bit of wasted and ill-used time.

Obesity and Other Chronic Health Problems Cost Employers Over $150 Billion Annually

Employers incur $153 billion in losses every year due to employee obesity and other chronic health problems. These costs include lost revenue due to illness, paying sick leave, insurance costs, etc. 

Can you imagine how much of these costs companies might mitigate if they’d merely incorporate daily exercise time into their workdays or provide better access to preemptive wellness checks and healthcare?

They could even offer incentives or bonuses for meeting wellness milestones to entice people to become healthier.

Facebook Costs Employers $28 Billion Annually

According to the same study, Facebook also costs employers several billion dollars each year. That’s because employees spend about 32% of their workdays on Facebook.

If they’re browsing social media, they aren’t working. That loss of productivity adds up to a lot of wasted cash each year.

Participatory Employees Are More Productive Employees

Another long-term study showed that employees allowed to participate in ‘big decision-making talks‘ are generally more efficient. When workers are allowed input on company decisions, they feel like their place in the workforce matters – like they have a voice that’s respected. These feelings translate to higher productivity rates. 

If people feel like they’re investing in something and that they have a hand in creating or improving that thing, they often feel like they helped create it. They want it to succeed, so they work harder to make it happen. 

More Than 80% of Employees Want Financial Counseling

One survey of 220 clerical workers showed that over 175 of those workers wished their companies had offered financial counseling to their employees. Employees worried about money and expenses are less productive than those who feel confident in their financial situations. 

Loan counseling is a relatively inexpensive program to implement in most businesses, and employees want it. They feel that if they could feel more secure about managing money, they’d be happier and more productive overall. 

Employees Allowed To Work From Home Just Once a Month Are 24% Happier at Work

Hollywood has created many sitcoms on the idea that employees are unhappy at work. Data shows working from home even one day a month could be the key to turning that around completely. 

A 24% job satisfaction increase is a tremendous increase, and companies can achieve it by allowing employees a single day to work from home. That’s a small price to pay for the increased productivity that comes along with the increased satisfaction. 

Final Thoughts

The trend is clear; people want flexible schedules and the ability to work from home, even if it’s only sporadically. Furthermore, companies could save money and increase employee satisfaction and productivity by implementing just a few relatively inexpensive new policies. 

The bottom line: Productivity goes hand-in-hand with job satisfaction and personal happiness. If you want more productive employees, you must be willing to invest in their satisfaction.

As one of the leading engineering staffing agencies, Apollo Technical recruits engineering, design, and IT Talent. Contact us about our Engineering recruiting services or IT staffing services for more information.