Jul
8th

Magazine Feature

Scots feign illness and work from home to avoid poor office design

More than one in five Scots (21%) have called in sick because they don’t like their working environment while nearly three in ten (29%) work from home when they can because they don’t like their office.

Those are the findings of a survey of 1,000 workers across the country commissioned by Glasgow-based Alpha Scotland, a furniture and design company specialising in creating effective workspaces. It says employers often underestimate the importance of investing properly in their staff’s surroundings.

Nearly a third of those questioned (31%) admitted wasting more than three hours a week at work as a direct result of disliking their working environment. Younger Scots, particularly 16-24 year olds, appeared to be most impacted by poor space.

Paul Black, CEO of the Alpha Group, of which Alpha Scotland is part, said: “The fact that 50% of Scots will not accept a job offer if the working environment is poor might be surprising to some. We have always known that space that’s inspiring attracts and retains people and the figures back this up – 76% say they’d be more likely to stay in a job if they liked their surroundings.

“Furthermore, the impact of the workplace on a whole range of factors like creativity, productivity, and overall sense of well-being, cannot be underestimated.”

In the poll (over three separate questions) only one in ten Scots rate their office as excellent when it comes to its ability to inspire creativity, productivity and to contribute positively to their sense of well-being. When it comes to concentration, a mere 9% said their work environment was ideal for aiding this with 18% rating it as poor in this respect.