• 29, January , 2018

    Open plan office workers “are less happy”

    Do you work in an open plan office?

    Are you less happy than your colleagues who enjoy their own office space?


    An article in the Daily Mail written by Victoria Allen talks about a study which found open-plan offices are affecting employees’ job satisfaction.


    “Being surrounded by others – with the accompanying noise and smells of food – makes staff less happy and is linked to increased sick leave and stress levels, researchers said.  The study led by Karlstad University in Sweden surveyed 271 workers, and found their satisfaction dropped as the number of people they shared an office increased.  It is best to have your own office – which researchers call a ‘cellular’ space – or share with only one or two people to better enjoy the working day, the results suggest.


    The authors, led by Dr Tobias Otterbring,wrote: ‘Extensive research shows that open-plan (vs cellular) offices are linked to decreased ease of interaction among co-workers, decreased levels of job satisfaction, and job performance and productivity.  In addition, compared to cellular offices, such open-plan work spaces are linked to decreased well-being and other negative health-related outcomes, such as increased sickness absence, and higher levels of stress, distraction, and disturbance.’


    The research concludes ‘Companies may wish to consider these findings before switching to such open office layouts, since their purported financial savings may be substantially lower than the costs associated with decreased job satisfaction and well-being and increased sickness absence'”

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