Small companies not monitoring productivity effectively

The majority of UK businesses are not taking steps to address productivity issues in their company, research finds.

Only 8 per cent of companies regularly monitor productivity metrics, while less than a quarter (22 per cent) believe it is something that needs to be monitored more closely, according to a study by HR software and employment law advice company BrightHR.

More than a third (38 per cent) admit they don’t know their productivity levels while 32 per cent believe it is less important to monitor than the bottom line.

Industries most in their dark are education, sales, media and marketing and professional services.

Employers believe the biggest drains on team productivity are HR administration (31 per cent), office politics (29 per cent) and fun and play in the workplace (28 per cent).

However, there is proof to indicate play at work helps boost employees’ mental wellbeing as well making the team more productive.

Moreover, more than a quarter of businesses (28 per cent) believe that fun and play in the workplace reduce productivity more than administration tasks (24 per cent), absenteeism/sick leave (16 per cent), staff training (14 per cent) and lateness (8 per cent).

Related: Five ways to create a productive workplace culture

Author and expert on the subject Graham Allcott, who compiled the ‘It Pays to Play: Play and Productivity’ report with BrightHR, says that we live in an age where, in theory, productivity should be booming, but that in the UK at least, it’s been flatlining for a decade.

‘Technology affords us so many exciting ways to improve productivity, whether it’s through software to automate or make tasks easier, the ability to work flexibly from home, or the opportunities provided by the information age and global connectedness. But there is also a downside, which many businesses just don’t see or mitigate,’ he adds.

‘Many workers feel like the boundaries between work and life are blurring, that they’re required to check email constantly no matter what time of day or night, or that they’re being monitored and micro-managed. So creating a culture of trust, where people can feel engaged to have fun at work and participate in constantly improving productivity has never been more vital.’

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