9 Open-Plan Office Statistics That You Should Know

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The majority of businesses in Sydney utilise an open-plan design in their office. At Niche Projects, we see this regularly… and we understand better than most that open-plan design comes with some benefits, but many downsides. Here are ten statistics that offer some insight into the good, the bad and the ugly of open-plan office design.

1 in 8 office workers have considered resigning because of their office layout.

Open-plan offices are the most common office layout by far. However, that is primarily because of the financial benefits that this kind of workplace offers to businesses. Moreover, the process of fitting out the space is much more affordable, and faster. 

Three-quarters of office workers don’t recommend an open-plan office design.

One study used a sample size of 1,000 office workers in the US. It found that 76% of them don’t recommend an open-plan office. They stated the main reasons for this sentiment as a lack of privacy, noise distraction, finding it difficult to concentrate, security risks around personal information, and a feeling that they were being held back from their best work. 

Overall, 90% of recent studies on open-plan office design have shown that this environment can lead to stress, conflict, and high blood pressure.

It is clear that the majority of open plan offices do lead to a negative impact on employee health and wellbeing. That includes both mental and emotional, and physical health. Therefore, businesses should take measures to improve the experience of their workplace for their people.

Open-plan offices can accommodate more people.

It goes without saying that open-plan workspaces in Sydney and elsewhere can fit more employees. This is one of the key benefits to businesses that utilise this design. However, there are no benefits to the employees that are crammed into these environments. If a private office has five employees, it’s estimated that with an open-plan layout, 15-25 workers could be placed in the same space.

Open-plan offices can cause a decline in overall health.

This report by Room found that one in seven employees operating out of an open-plan office reported an overall decline in their health. It’s obvious that the myriad factors we’ve discussed earlier could easily result in this kind of impact on staff.

Open plan office workers lose about 86 minutes every day due to distraction, according to Research Gate.

This is an enormous amount of time, and it’s lost time that you, as a business owner, are paying for. The causes of distraction can vary greatly, but tend to involve background noise, interruptions from other employees, and visual distraction. The good news is that it is easy to reduce this lost time through the use of partitions, or an office refurbishment.

Roughly 56% of employees in open-plan offices wear headphones to reduce noise distractions.

Flex Jobs found this to be the case when conducting research into distraction in open-plan workspaces. In some cases, this bid to reduce distraction can reduce employee interactions, as well as cause hearing loss in the long term. It is unfortunate that workers do feel they must wear headphones in order to complete their work with minimal distraction

YouGov found that one-third of employees were heavily affected by the fact that others could easily hear and judge them.

This study was conducted with a sample size of 4,000 employees. It found that 31% did not want to work in an open space office, because it made them self-conscious when on the phone, and completing work tasks. What’s more, 16% of the workers felt that the open plan office was impacting their health in some way.

Certain studies found that the more workers gathered into one space, the more dissatisfied those employees became. 

Open plan offices cram as many people as possible into one space. It saves businesses on money spent to fit-out the office, as well as to rent a larger space. And unfortunately, it’s clearly the employees who suffer the most for it.

If you’re an office-based business in Sydney, it’s important to consider the impact your layout could be having on employees, and productivity. The best way to gain valuable insights and apply these to your business, is to work with a professional Sydney office design company. At Niche Projects, we’re here to help. Get in touch with us today.