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50 Mind-Blowing Employee Productivity Statistics for 2021

Employee productivity stats can help businesses to understand ways of improving productivity in their workplace. After all, businesses of all sizes try to find ways to improve employee productivity to improve their bottom line. 

Some tools can improve productivity visibility, such as employee monitoring software. Here are 50 mind-blowing productivity stats that could be affecting your employees:

Editor’s Choice for the Most Incredible Productivity Stats

While this mind-blowing list of productivity statistics might surprise you, we’ve pulled out our top 11 of the most incredible (and surprising) productivity stats in 2021:

1. When employees are engaged, they are more productive, resulting in a potential increase in profits by 21%. (Forbes)

2. 41% of stressed employees think that their stress negatively affects productivity. (Colonial Life)

3. Finding premium talent can pay off in the long run, as they are eight times more productive than the average worker! (DynamicSignal)

4. 71% of people agree that listening to music boosts work productivity. (Robert Half)

5. If the work environment is too cold, then 53% of employees might be less productive. (CareerBuilder)

6. Many employees aren’t engaged at work (85%), or they are actively disengaged; this could result in $7 trillion of lost productivity annually in the US. (Gallup)

7. Open office layouts might contribute to a drop in overall wellbeing (32%) and a 15% reduction in productivity. (Exeter)

8. Job stress is a primary reason why 12% of employees call in sick, costing businesses $200 to $300 billion annually lost to productivity. (American Institute of Stress)

9. Low company morale (34%), project completion delays/failures (44%), lost sales (18%) and missed performance goals (25%) all contribute to lower productivity. (DynamicSignal)

10. The average office worker is productive for less than 3 hours a day (2 hours and 53 minutes). (Voucher Cloud)

11. When distracted, an average employee takes 23 minutes to regain focus. (UCI)

Workplace Productivity Statistics

Businesses globally scratch their head to find ways to increase productivity in their workplaces. When looking at these statistics, they seem obvious, and perhaps it is most mind-blowing that actions to correct these situations haven’t been implemented: 

12. 21% of UK employees believe that they are truly productive for an entire workday.

(GoRemotely)

This statistic is compared to 79% of employees who admitted that they don’t think they are truly productive for an entire eight-hour workday. This latter statistic is accurate, as employees work less than three productive hours daily. 

13. The average American worker’s net productivity has increased by 253% since 1980.

(GoRemotely)

So while the average productivity rates have increased in the United States, wages have not followed suit. Wages have only increased 116% in the same time period. 

14. Multitasking can hurt your productivity by 40%.

(Forbes)

Multiple reports have confirmed that multitasking actually hurts productivity. So stop encouraging it! Switching from one task to another quickly can be stressful on our brain, and we can quickly become less efficient!

15. The average employee is interrupted every three minutes.

(UCI)

Whether it is bothersome coworkers or pesky emails, the average employee is not given enough time to sit down and focus on tasks. Employers who seek to minimize interruptions can provide a smoother workflow with less stress and multitasking (both of which can hurt productivity). 

Factors Affecting Employee Productivity Statistics in 2021

Every team has different work styles; however, companies can hone in on common factors to improve workplace productivity and workflows. Here are the top 5:

16. Working styles make it difficult to work in a team, according to 46% of people surveyed.

(Business News Daily)

Although 81% of employees often work in a team setting, almost half feel that working in a team makes for a difficult dynamic. This is in part due to the different working styles of each individual. 

17. Ineffective company communication stresses out 80% of US employees. 

(DynamicSignal)

Mobile apps are becoming increasingly important to how we do business. Therefore, you may want to look for technology like employee monitoring software with mobile apps so that your employees can have the opportunity to use their work devices, work apps, and data from anywhere. 

18. Engaged employees are more likely to be productive, and it has the potential to increase profits by 21%.

(GoRemotely)

It’s no surprise that happiness and workplace productivity are strongly related. The happier your employees are, then the more likely they will be happy and willing to work! Productive employees are equal to a massive boost in profitability!

19. 41% of stressed employees believe that the stress is negatively impacting their productivity. 

(Colonial Life)

Since stress has such a major impact on wellbeing (and productivity), employers would be wise to include compensation as a means of alleviating stress. Paid vacation leaves, raises, wellness programs, bonuses, and flexible work schedules are all ways that could positively alleviate stress. 

20. Over 70% of employees worry about stressors during their work time.

(Colonial Life)

Two of the biggest stresses that employees have on their minds are their jobs and the finances

If you have 70% of your employees worrying about these during work time, you have your employees not working while on work time more often than not. 28% of employees spend less than 1 hour of work time each week worrying; another 50% spend up to five hours per week, and 16% spend 10 hours a week. There is also an additional 6% spending 15 hours on worrying. 

All of this is equating to poorer productivity and even mental health in your workplace. 

Work-Life Balance Statistics

As an employer, you can’t control your employees’ work-life balance. But you might want to pay attention to it. Having a poor work-life balance can lead to stress, which can impact productivity.

21. Many service professionals (94%) work over 50 hours each week, even though the average workweek is 34.4 hours (Harvard Business Review) 

22. Above 190 billion is spent each year to address the physical and psychological effects of burnout. (Harvard Business Review) 

23. Over half (66%) of workers don’t feel like they have a work-life balance. (Smallbiz Trends) 

24. Only 23% of companies think they promote work-life balance in their organization. (Deloitte) 

25. Most (83%) of Gen Zers and Millennials don’t feel they have a work-life balance. (Future Workplace) 

26. Flexibility promotes work-life balance, according to 79% of employees. (Flex Jobs) 

27. If you encourage work-life balance as a company, you can potentially see two times more productivity (compared to those who don’t promote work-life balance). (Deloitte) 

28. Work-life balance is an important factor when determining a job, according to 72% of respondents. (Statista) 

29. Unfortunately, workers spend 40.1% of their day multitasking (which is not efficient!). (Forbes)

Working Remotely Can Transform Efficiency 

Many of the trends for employee productivity suggest that you should allow time for “alone time” or individual work in addition to team time. Meetings should be reduced, and try to go remote when you can. 

Here are some working remotely stats to browse, which may be a strong indicator for moving to a remote work model (at least sometimes!):

30. 77% of employees report greater productivity while working off-site.

(Remote Collaborative Worker Survey) 

Work offices are helpful, but sometimes they are not always the most comfortable work setting. Therefore, sometimes, employees wouldn’t mind working off-site every so often. Not only will this boost productivity, but it will also reduce the stress associated with lengthy commutes or preparation times. 

Luckily, remote employee monitoring software can help keep eyes on your team, even if they are spread out across the globe.

31. 64% of global business leaders said flexible working had a positive impact on productivity.

(Condeco reports)

Flexible work environments are on the rise. Whether it is a core part of your business or you want to implement flexible work as a bonus, it seems to be a good choice. Measure productivity outcomes in the office and with remote work to get a sense of the difference in productivity. 

Many companies think that flexible working means less work. They may be surprised to learn that by being more flexible with their team, you could have increased productivity!

32. 86% of employees say they’re most productive when they work alone from home. 

(Fundera)

Given the fact that many employees prefer to work alone, it’s no surprise that employees feel more productive when they are working at home, alone. While working from home is not necessarily beneficial for social cohesion in your workplace, a flexible working house could boost productivity and the sense of control in one’s job. 

33. 86% of employees prefer to work alone.

(Hubstaff)

Work efficiency will really depend on the workflow setup. While many employees would prefer to work alone, this isn’t always feasible. Finding the best balance between working alone and working with a team might improve productivity. 

34. More than two-thirds of employers have seen increased productivity among their remote workers.

(Global Workplace Analytics)

When companies like Best Buy, British Telecom, and Dow Chemical switched to remote, they saw a boost in employee productivity metrics between 35 to 40%! AT&T also saw that remote workers ended up working five more hours a week when compared to colleagues in-house! 

Remote work has a positive impact on employee productivity. And how you can harness this boost in productivity is up to each business!

35. 83% of workers believe that they don’t have to work in an office to be productive.

(Fuze)

Even if your business is not ready to move to remote work right away, you should consider that most employees don’t necessarily need to be in the office. If this is the case, then look into ways of making the office space more welcoming. That way, even if you want them in the office, they might feel better and more excited about coming in. 

The bottom line is that you can consider moving to remove work if you think your company is ready for it. Remote work gives employees many benefits, but you will have to work through some of the kinks associated with this shift. 

36. One out of three remote workers would be unhappy if the company would start monitoring employee efficiency.

(GoRemotely)

One-third of your remote workers would be upset if you started implementing software for employee monitoring. Employee monitoring software is a very normal software and one that can be viewed from anywhere in the world. However, the implementation of that software doesn’t seem to be sufficient enough of a reason for them to leave. 43% of employees said that they would be unhappy with the monitoring solution and would consider leaving. 

Once again, this is not an indicator that they would be willing to leave. Initially, the decision to implement a monitoring solution is filled with distrust, which might hurt the company culture. However, companies can take steps to educate their employees around why employee monitoring is needed (for project tracking, for example) and because of the financial cost of time theft.

37. 82% of remote employee managers are concerned about reduced productivity.

(GoRemotely)

When you run a remote business or remote workers, there will largely be a concern about decreased productivity. This is because managers have no idea what remote workers are doing during work hours. It’s not as simple as walking around the office and peering over your shoulders. 

Workplace productivity stats have shown us that, time and time again, remote work positively impacts productivity. Managers who work with remote employees should hold regular meetings with remote workers to understand which tasks are being completed and go over performance metrics.

38. Employees are 24% happier if they are allowed to work from home just once a month.

(OWL Labs)

Businesses worried about implementing flexible work arrangements or remote work should try to do so just for the improved productivity and the simple pleasures of working from home.

And remote work productivity and security can be tracked and monitored through remote employee monitoring software. 

39. Work-from-home employees are 52% less likely to take time off work.

(Apollo Technical)

Another point on the board for remote workers! If they can work from home on occasion, you may be giving your employees more options for getting work done!

You’ll notice more hours worked, fewer sick days, and usually more engagement if you switch to remote work. 

Communicating Effectively is Key to Getting Work Done 

Productivity in the workplace can be a challenge. When you have many different tasks, workflows, styles of work, and people from all different kinds of backgrounds, focus on clear and effective communication. Here are some stats around communicating and the important 

40. Employees spend around 5 hours a week simply waiting for people to get back to them with important information. 

(Panopto)

Waiting on emails may be the bane of many existing employees. There are ways to simplify communication, such as integrating partners or business-to-business relationships into communication with clients like Slack. 

Project management software can help track some of these gaps. By using project management software and time tracking software, you can have a better idea of how much time is being wasted on poor communication. 

41. Unified communications (UC) phone systems provide an average 52% boost in productivity and a 25% increase in profit. 

(Digium)

Unified communication phone systems are systems that incorporate multiple communication methods for a business. Whether you need to communicate via text, email, messenger, or phone call, doing so through a UC can improve productivity. Stats suggest a 52% boost in workplace productivity, equating to a 25% increase in operational profit. 

42. 94% of those surveyed said that video conferencing’s top benefit is increased efficiency and productivity. 

(Digium)

Being in the room with someone can drastically reduce the amount of time spent explaining what you need. Unfortunately, connecting with someone in person is not always possible. Video conferencing software is a major seller in this regard. By connecting with individuals through video chat, you can have a better social experience, better rapport, and boosted efficiency and productivity.  

Ways to Improve Productivity 

In addition to remote work and clear communication, there are more ways to boost productivity, including technology and data-driven productivity plans. Here are eight consider in your workplace:

43. 75% of global organizations expect to use more productivity tools in 2021. 

(FinancesOnline)

Implementing technology is one of the best things that a company can do for productivity. Whether through the Internet of Things, which could improve productivity by 46%, or employee monitoring software, technology makes poor productivity clearer and gives managers solution-oriented data. 

44. 92% of employees say having technology that helps them do their job efficiently affects their work satisfaction. 

(Ultimate Software)

It’s overwhelming that technology has a profound impact on productivity, workflow, and work-wellbeing. Nowadays, most companies rely on technology, and adding more technology offerings for your employees to use will only increase the number of ways things can be done.

Sometimes this can be confusing, so make sure you offer streamlined technology and clear training, so operations don’t break. 

45. Gamification can increase productivity in the workplace, according to 89% of employees surveyed. 

(TalentLMS)

Gamification is the ability to make something, whether sinking sales or sending emails, a competition. By competing with their coworkers (in fun ways), your employees are more engaged with the task and will even set their sights on ways to improve their tasks. 

Gamification makes things fun, even though sometimes work can be a drag!

46. 67% of survey respondents believe it would be easier to focus on work if important information from all their apps appeared in a single window. 

(Business Wire)

When employees have to switch back and forth between apps, it can be hard to track. Some businesses rely on multiple computer screens to get this job done, but that’s not always possible. Having important information in a dashboard can help to streamline your business. 

47. Productivity losses related to fatigue cost an estimated $1,967 per employee each year.

(JOEM)

Sleep is pivotal in employee mental health and wellbeing, but also for productivity. Employees who are tired due to fatigue are actually costing businesses money – almost $2,000 each (per employee!). Encouraging your employees to get a good night’s sleep, which can be affected by loads of things, can save your business money. 

48. Replacing 2.5 hours of work in a week with exercise can increase productivity.

(JOEM-2)

In addition to sleep, studies have found that exercise can increase productivity. Employees should be encouraged to exercise throughout the day. As little as 2.5 hours of low-intensity aerobic exercises a week can boost productivity and time management skills by 72%! 

Your employees should be taking breaks, speaking positively about their breaks, and exercising more. Encourage time off throughout the day for walks or casual bike rides!

49. Proper nutrition can increase job performance by 25%.

(CMI)

This was concluded by a productivity study conducted over a period of three years, with 20,000 employees questioned annually. Those workers that ate five fruit and vegetable portions at least four days a week showed to be 25% more productive than those who don’t have a habit of doing so.

50. 65% of employees state that they’re more productive during the holidays.

(Robert Half)

Employees want to enjoy their holidays, but it can be hard to do when work is piling up. Holidays periods give employees time to catch up while it is peaceful and quiet. And, sometimes relatives are in town to give family a boost of help! 

Best Ways to Boost Productivity in the Workplace

These top 2021 stats are clear: workplace productivity is continually being hampered by distractions, coworkers, stress, and more. Technology can improve some productivity, but it also contributes to productivity losses. And from a financial point of view, productivity losses can be significant!

Consider implementing productivity software. By incorporating software like employee monitoring and project management for in-house and remote teams, you will see improved collaboration, communication, and performance. You’ll also get clear metrics around the number of completed tasks, wasted time, time spent on apps and projects, and much more. 

Without the data, you have no real way of knowing where your “time” and money are going. Use employee tracking software so you can stay ahead of pesky projects and keep your employees motivated!

By SoftActivity Team.

Sources

Business News Daily

Colonial Life

Forbes

Fuze

Gallup

Future Workplace

Global Workplace Analytics

JOEM

JOEM-2

CMI

Robert Half

TalentLMS

Vouchercloud

Digium

Panopto

Deloitte

Future Workplace 

Flex Jobs

Forbes

Gallup

Harvard Business Review

Huffington Post 

Statista

Remote Collaborative Worker Survey

Condeco reports

Fundera

CareerBuilder study 

Exeter University

The American Institute of Stress

Stress in the Workplace

Smallbiz Trends

Apollo Technical

harmonie.ie via Business Wire

Dynamic Signal

UCI

Ultimate Software

OWL Labs

Finances Online

September 9th, 2021