Where has the time gone

First published: 01-10-2014


Ever find yourself asking that all-important question "Where has the time gone?" at various points during the working day? Well, thanks to a survey recently conducted by the team here at Watch Shop, we can give you the answer to that very question. We probed 2,000 British employees in order to unveil how exactly employees around the country are spending their time at work. As you might expect, plenty are filling their days with various activities which have little, if anything, to do with work! Let's take a closer look at our survey participants had to say...

Working hard or hardly working

It's a well-known fact that taking cigarette breaks is one of the most common non work-related activities undertaken during the working day. It therefore comes as little surprise to discover that almost 10% of employees spend up to two working days a year doing so.  Perhaps more astonishing, however, is that, during this year's World Cup, almost 15% of employees around the country spent between half an hour and an hour watching football or keeping up-to-date with the scores. Equally as concerning, a significant 11% of respondents admitted to shopping online for at least an hour each week, while 6% spend six working days a year taking private phone calls during office hours.

Businesses to blame

Nevertheless, while we may be quick to judge, it's not always employees themselves who are to blame for wasting time during the working day. In fact, up to two days annually are being spent dealing with substandard technology or equipment the workplace. What's more, over 20% of employees spend up to two days a year undertaking tasks that aren't in their job description - something which irritates over a third of the survey's respondents.

Pet peeves

While carrying out additional tasks has been flagged up as a common bug-bear amongst British workers, our survey revealed that commuting to work is considered to be the most frustrating work-related task, with almost 33% of participants citing this as a response. Other 'pet peeves' included attending internal meetings, and working from home or doing overtime, with 24 and 27% of the votes respectively.

Promoting productivity

Bearing all of the above in mind, it makes perfect sense to consider what steps businesses ought to take in order to boost employee productivity. It goes without saying that working environment is just one factor which can have a huge impact upon employee efficiency. In recent years, businesses have been opting for large, open plan offices in order to promote creativity amongst their employees and in turn, increase output. Surprisingly enough, however, our survey has revealed that such working environments often stem productivity. As it turns out, a relaxed working environment is most likely to encourage employees to work more productively, with of 39% respondents agreeing.


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