Jobs: Office distractions are hitting productivity

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MONDAY mornings, between 10am and noon, are the time when workers are at their most productive, says a new report.

From as early in the working week as Tuesday, distractions like spending time on sites like Facebook and Twitter start to creep in more and more, says the survey of East of England employees by office supplies retailer Viking.

John O’Keeffe, commercial director of Viking, said: “The idea that we all dislike Mondays and little or no work is done does not seem to be the case in a modern small business. The research has shown that people feel more productive and fresher on a Monday morning. It would seem that from Tuesday onwards distractions that impact on productivity seem to start creeping in more and more.”

The research into productivity levels across regions of the UK revealed 22 per cent of office staff feel Monday’s are when they feel they’ve accomplished the most at work. Almost half of those said that was the time they felt fresher and more able to handle a busy workload.

A further 25 per cent of workers in the East of England also blamed defective equipment such as printers, computers and phones, while 27 per cent blamed their boss’s poor leadership skills. A further 23 per cent said they were unmotivated.

Nationwide, on average, employees are spending 13 minutes each day, more than an hour a week, on social media sites. However, IT and telecommunications employees admit to spending 25 minutes a day on social media sites, while those in hospitality and leisure spend 18 minutes a day when they should be working.

Those working in the civil service and the automotive industry spend the least amount of time on social media, with five and six minutes respectively.

More than 22 per cent of those surveyed said that constant email traffic and sitting in meetings where nothing happened were also major drains on output while a further 22 per cent argued that red tape was a barrier to greater productivity.

Viking surveyed 3,256 employees working at small firms between April 20-23 across 15 industry sectors.