How to Make Your Office More Productive for Your Employees

Lynn Martelli
Lynn Martelli

According to research, an average office employee is only productive for 2 hours and 53 minutes in an 8-hour workday. This is because the smallest of distractions can significantly waste an employee’s time.

A University of California Irvine study elaborates how it takes an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds to resume a task after an interruption, wasting 4.8% of the workday. Employers are right to be worried about these declining productivity levels, as it impacts the overall progress and profitability of the company.

However, there are ways to make your employees more productive and active. This article details how to make your office more productive for your employees. Let’s get in.

1.   Establish a Strong Work Culture

Company cultures tend to have a direct impact on their revenues and profitability. According to Gallup, companies that prioritize their culture experience a 33% increase in their revenues than those that don’t. A happy culture doesn’t only increase employee productivity but also lowers absenteeism, job turnover, and even worker compensation claims. This, in turn, leads to increased revenues and benefits for your company.

There are many ways employees can inculcate a strong work culture in their organization. For instance, communication and inclusion are two ways employees can feel safe, valued, and respected at work. Other ways to foster a positive work culture include recognizing and rewarding achievements, promoting work-life balance, and encouraging collaboration and teamwork.

2.   Improve Workplace Conditions

The workplace and atmosphere an employee works in can also significantly impact their overall productivity levels. Adding more lights around the office, placing flower pots and plants, and even repainting those office walls can all bring new life to your office as well as to your employees.

Another thing that you, as an employer, can work on is establishing rules around the level of acceptable noise in the workplace. Excessive noise levels can impact the level of productivity, mood, and even the psychological state of your employees.

3.   Reduce Tech Distractions

Tech gadgets, such as cell phones, have become an important part of the modern workplace, especially in remote and hybrid environments. While they can be an important means of communication and all things work-related, they are also major distracters. Social media applications such as TikTok and Facebook may indulge employees for hours, reducing their productivity levels.

In such a case, it is probably best to create awareness amongst employees about such distractions and ask them to actively decrease their use until necessary. Another option can be introducing website blockers to company systems, blacklisting different websites from being accessed from the workplace.

4.   Introduce Better Incentives

According to a study by the Incentive Research Foundation, companies that use incentives and reward programs report an increase in productivity by 22%. By acknowledging and appreciating employee contributions and achievements, employers can boost employee morale, engagement, and even motivation levels.

These can be tangible rewards such as cash, gift cards, and gifts, or intrinsic motivators such as praise and appreciation, or declaring your employee as an employee of the month, for example. Performance-based bonuses are another way employers can appreciate their top talent, further motivating them to work harder. The important thing is to assess which incentive works best for your employees and present them with the same.

5.   Invest in Training and Development

40% of Fortune 500 companies use “Learning Management Systems” in order to stay competitive. Moreover, according to a global survey, companies can be 17% more productive and 21% more profitable when their employees receive the training that they need.

This is why investing in training and development is an important way of boosting productivity in employees. They help improve the knowledge and skills of your employees, increase their motivation, help reduce the mistakes they make, and boost their confidence levels. The best part about T&D is that they foster a culture of innovation that in turn helps an organization to grow even further.

6.   Keeping the Office Clean

Another key characteristic of a productive work environment is cleanliness. According to studies, 72% of employees are reluctant to recommend a business to job seekers who have poor office hygiene. Moreover, 70% also feel that poor hygiene adversely impacts overall job satisfaction. Besides job satisfaction, clean offices can help employees increase productivity by reducing the number of sick days. Clean workspaces also allow employees to focus better and get distracted less. This is why it’s important for employers to actively coordinate with good cleaning companies for a hygienic office environment.

According to Compass Cleaning Solutions, a renowned commercial cleaning company serving Phoenix, Arizona, simply opting for efficient cleaning isn’t enough. Cleaning companies should be picked that have a great regard for environmental friendliness. After all, a cleaning company can only be as loyal to their cleaning job as much as they are towards a clean environment.

7.   Improve Communication

A 2023 State of Business Communication report by The Harris Poll, commissioned by Grammarly, unveils compelling insights: 72% of business leaders believe that effective communication has boosted their productivity.

Moreover, 60% of business leaders also reported that effective communication has helped their employees improve their confidence levels. To improve communication within your organization, try to figure out which modes of communication are most effective with your employees and actively use them. Informal communication, such as get-togethers and parties, can also help employees open up and communicate better.

8.   Encourage Employees to Take a Vacation

According to an Ernst & Young study, for every 10 additional hours employees took in vacation time, their year-end performance increased by 8%. Surprisingly, another study revealed that employees who used all of their vacation time had an increased chance of getting a promotion or a raise.

Bottom-line? Employers should encourage employees to take some time off and go on a vacation. Those employees who end up taking time off are more satisfied, more productive, and more pumped to come back to work. For this reason, employers should regularly track the work performance of their employees and encourage those who haven’t taken time off to do so.

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