8 truths about the modern office

Private office spaces lead to more productivity, external employees face challenges, according to a study by Olivet Nazarene University.

The advantages and disadvantages for companies to switch to full remote staff
More companies are moving to a fully external workforce to save money and make employees happier. But there are challenges to consider.

Apparently, most employees agree with Virginia Woolf: “I need loneliness. I need space.” A study conducted by Olivet Nazarene University showed that employees with private offices are happiest (90%) and most productive (83%).

The research was conducted in November 2019 and also suggested that it does not necessarily mean that employees are more productive if they do not work with colleagues.

SEE: Management of external employees: a guide for managers (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

Here six truths about modern workplaces have been revealed from the study.

1. Working at a distance has challenges

More than half of those surveyed (58%) said they are less productive, with 80% admitting to multitasking, and that distraction is the number one “the most difficult thing about working remotely.”

That said, 18% said signing at the end of a workday was the second most difficult aspect of working remotely, followed by collaborating or communicating with colleagues (18%), being responsible (5%), miscommunication (5%) ) and find reliable WiFi (4%).

It’s hard to work with
external colleagues
, 42% of the respondents concluded, citing reasons such as availability (42%), collaboration (25%), different time zones (20%) and miscommunication (13%).

If you depend on Messenger to communicate, rather than personally, one in three feels isolated or lonely.

2. Working from home means that clothing is optional

And not everyone who works remotely does that in his PJs; one in three admits that they work naked or in their underwear, with 25% saying that they dress “in a way that I would not want anyone to see”, with the majority describing their home clothes as “more casual than at home” work, “and a surprising 18% dress while working remotely” the same way I would at work. ”

3. Open floor plans prevail

Back at the office, the cells are apparently outside the door and have been replaced by open floor plans in 51% of the workplaces. In terms of productivity, in addition to the 83% most productive in a private office, 66% prefer an open floor with private offices, 62% prefer indoor spaces with an open floor environment, 61% prefer an open floor with no allocated space, and the dated cells won favor with 60% of the respondents.

4. The majority of employees wear headphones while working

Thirty-five percent of the employees surveyed cited a quiet location as their main productivity need
followed by a special office space (24%), a comfortable chair or desk (22%), a door (8%), with the remaining 11% voting for “others”.

Thanks to the excellent hardware that is available in most office spaces, 53% said they did that regularly
wear headphones at the office
followed by 40% who use them 25-50% of the time, 28% use them up to 25% of the time, 21% use headphones 50-75% daily and 11% admitted they have headphones on 75- 100% of their day.

Although it is not surprising that 59% of the headphones listen to music, 21% chose podcasts, 8% listened to audio books, 7% listened to “nothing” or “white noise”.

5. Chitchat rules in offices

Respondents had an average of nine conversations via message platforms and eight face-to-face conversations per day. An estimated 54% use instant messaging platforms (
gets a shout here), but half say they use it for ‘socializing more than necessary’, but only one in five says it hurts their productivity.

There are conspirators who weigh because 45% of the respondents believe that message platforms are used for surveillance.

SEE: Slack: A cheat sheet (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

6. External employees prefer home offices

Two in five respondents are allowed to work off-site a few times a month. When employees work remotely, 79% choose to work at home (despite possible distractions) instead of choosing a coffee shop or special workspace.

When asked “What makes you happiest at the office?” the most popular answers were: natural light, free drinks (coffee, tea, etc.), comfortable meeting rooms, free snacks and a pet-friendly policy. The top responses for what most at an office didn’t like were: “It’s too noisy”, “There is no privacy”, “Too much visual distraction” and “Too little energy”.

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