During the Christmas period it’s fair to say the Office Furniture world becomes a tad quiet, which allows me to examine the latest goings on. I stumbled across an Office Space survey conducted by Expert Market. The results are somewhat surprising to say the least.
More than half of employees prefer a private workspace, while open plan office workers often experience too many distractions to work efficiently, according to latest findings.
Office equipment specialist ‘Expert Market’ conducted a survey which revealed that 54% of workers would prefer to work in an isolated office space, whilst 65% said that lack of natural light adversely impacted their mood during the working day.
"Employees reported that the open-plan design of many offices encouraged a negative sense of competition between staff and a hostile working environment that pitted colleagues against each other" - a statement from Expert Market
According to the findings, ‘peace and quiet’ was fundamental to increasing productivity in the work place. 37% of the 1060 questioned said they’d prefer a quiet office over regular breaks and even cake. If I put the same question to my colleagues here at Office Reality, I know 80% of them would choose cake over peace and quiet every day of the week.
Open plan office spaces have been on the increase for many years now. With office designers, business owners and managers often keen to put emphasis on a ‘collaborative’ working environment, these findings slightly shock me. In a quest to boost team morale through a relaxed and less formal environment, companies may have achieved quite the opposite.
Having worked in both an open plan office and a more solitary office space, I have to say open plan office design increases productivity. However, this is just my personal opinion. There are a lot of key factors to look at when designing a new office space but getting it right is paramount to the productivity and happiness of any given workforce.
Tony Nguyen of Expert Market said: "the findings urge us to question whether a cheaper office structure is really saving an organisation money or costing the business dearly through decreased morale and productivity?"
- 54% claimed they would prefer to work in separate offices
- 37.6% said a quiet office would improve their working day the most
- Respondents ranked a poor computer as the most frustrating piece of equipment which had the most impact on morale at work
- 65% said having no natural light negatively impacted their mood