It’s the first work week of 2015, and you’re ready and raring to go after all of that time off over the holidays. You might have to play a bit of catch-up, and are planning on a few late nights at the office. Does this sound like you? If so, think twice about putting in those extra hours.
That advice sounds crazy, right? Who in their right minds would advise someone to work less? According to new research by John Pencavel of Stanford University, economists have long suspected that longer work hours have not actually equaled greater productivity, and that in fact extra time in the office can actually harm productivity.
According to the study, the marginal amount of output begins to rapidly decline for every additional hour past “about” 50 in a week. Additionally, for 56 to 70 working hours, there was no discernable difference in output. Anyone working past 56 hours in a week might as well go home, because that time is wasted at work.
50 hours still sounds like a lot, but the research points to the reduced productivity kicking in at closr to 49 hours. That means if you’re constantly staying in the office for an hour or two after hours, you might not be accomplishing as much as you think.
Our goal should be to work more efficiently, and not to sit in an office running out time on the clock. While many organizations are limited in the type of options they can provide employees, we can all make a concerted effort to not equate quantity with quality.
We’re all about making our workforce is more efficient – and that includes ourselves. If you’re looking to streamline your own processes and maximize your own productivity, take a look at, “Focusing on What’s Important in HR: Improving Efficiency and Visibility Across the Employee Lifecycle with Automated Workflows.”