Poor time management skills and an unprofessional attitude at work have been the two main accused when it comes to unproductiveness. Inefficiency has been at the roots of organizational functioning since ages. Back in time it was characterized by middle aged women knitting wool. Nowadays, it is about a little bit of Facebook, a bit of Twitter, and some quality time with friends near the coffee machine.


While the pass time activities at work have definitely changed, it is not completely clear that to what amount or extent they have been able to alter the percentage of inefficiency or at work. Diverging from the core tasks and doing something else might be counted as a waste of time; however, what if it is important for your overall role? For example, if an HR manager spends 80 percent of his time on the phone, is he wasting time or making the right use of it? CareerBuilder’s survey throws light on many such angles of workplace productivity.

Below are the Key Findings of the Survey on “Roots of Unproductiveness- What Your Employees Do at Work”

  • Out of the 86 respondents who participated in the survey, only 5.81% said that they arrived bang on time, followed by 17.44 percent of people arriving usually in time. Punctuality was one of the main focus areas of the survey because it aids in determining key traits of professionalism in an employee.
  • The first thing that most do post logging in is to check their attendance sheet, which indicates that 38.37% of the people try and make sure that they reach office and log in on time.
  • Out of 86 respondents 26 felt like wasting another half an hour post lunch. 17 said that they felt distracted, uninterested and unproductive from 3.00 P.M. to 5.00 P.M. Combined together, these two points show that afternoons are the most unproductive time of the working day.
  • Numbers indicate that people would rather spend their time listening music or on social media sites rather than on cleaning and arranging their work folders.
  • Only 18 percent of the people believe in finishing the most important task of the day first.
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On Phone at Work

Based on the above findings, it can be concluded that there exists a lack or a gap of understanding among employees regarding making the most of their time. For example, even though the percentage of people who made phone calls depending on the ‘urgency of the situation’ was 62%, only one respondent out of the a fore mentioned percentage belonged to the HR industry. 10% out of the given 62% made minimum of seven calls in a day.
On further categorization, it was found out that out of the 86 respondents, 32 were married. Within that sub-group 13 people made more than 4 calls a day and 2 out of 32 made more than 7 calls a day. The good news, however, is that only 12 percent of the people waste time on social media sites (Wow, That was unexpected!)

Scientific Way of Measuring Workplace Productivity

Time and motion studies were developed long back, but till date are regarded as two of the most accurate methods of measuring workplace productivity. They even take into account the reflexes and movements of employee and measure the time spent on, say yawning. Experimenting with such methods can help gain better understanding of things like standard time taken, actual time taken to complete a task, average time taken for the activity etc.

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Key Ingredients of the Survey

Technique used: Primary Search through Written Questionnaire
Research Medium: Social Media platforms like Facebook, Twitter etc, email marketing
Target Audience: Working People, 18-y-o and above
Reach/Respondents that the Survey Got: 86

Image Courtesy: Mashable

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