Even without a heatwave, the summer months tend to bring a decline in employee productivity. The heat, holidays, and the desire to be out in the sunshine all contribute to a slowing down at work.


But summer isn’t the only time when productivity slumps. In fact, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) claims that global labour productivity has failed to rise significantly since the global economic downturn.


But what is causing this productivity problem? And how can you even measure productivity in the office?


As Facility Executive recently discussed, general means of measuring productivity don’t tend to give an accurate picture of actual output. Instead, it argues we should be focusing on “perceived productivity” and it seems the physical working environment is a major factor when it comes to an employee’s sense of productivity, as well as pride and overall work-life satisfaction.


The publication’s ‘The Next 250k’ report found that just over half (57%) of respondents agree that their workplace enables them to work productively.








What is killing productivity?


By comparing those that agree their workplace fosters productivity and those that don’t, Facility Executive found that the greatest difference in support is in work activities, such as ‘thinking/creative thinking’, ‘reading’, and ‘individual focused work, desk-based’. When looking at factors with the largest differences in satisfaction, ‘space between working settings’, ‘dividers’, and ‘noise levels’ came out on top.


This suggests that some businesses have been so preoccupied with focusing on creating collaborative spaces that supporting individual work has been put on the back burner. It seems that the imbalance between collaborative and individual work spaces is causing the perception of personal productivity to fall.


Of course, this isn’t to say that offices should get rid of their collaborative features. But, as our daily roles become more complex, companies need to make sure that their office space provides all employees with the multitude of spaces and working environments they need in order to work productively.


Businesses across the globe are suffering from productivity problems, but they’re also failing to make use of one of the biggest tools at their disposal – their office. To turn your working space into an environment that fosters productivity, creativity and collaboration, call the experts at Kerr today.