Office Research & Statistics

What time and day are UK office workers most productive?

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20/08/2019

Productivity is key to a successful working day, ensuring you get as much work done as you can. But, our productivity levels vary from person to person. While some people can’t wait to tick off everything on their to-do list as soon as they come into work, some may need a few hours to wake up first and are more productive a few hours into their day. At Workthere, we conducted a survey of 1,500 full-time office workers who work 8am-6pm, Monday to Friday, to reveal just exactly when UK workers are the most productive.

What time are we most productive?

Our research revealed that the majority of UK office workers feel the most productive between 10 and 11am – just between breakfast and lunch. So, if you’re looking to complete a difficult task that you’ve been putting off, then this might be the best time to do it. 

Our research also found that, in general, the earlier in the day, the more productive workers are too. One in five (19%) respondents said they were most productive in the morning, between 8am and 11am, and just 2% claimed they felt the most productive at the later part of the day, between 4pm and 6pm.

What are the most productive days?

When it comes to the days’ workers feel most productive, does it vary, or do they feel the same each day?

Almost a third of workers (31%) said they feel the same level of productivity each day, so there’s no set day where they work best. Break the figures down however, and the top three most productive days, are:

  1. Tuesday (24%)
  2. Monday (16%)
  3. Wednesday (15%)

Interestingly, Tuesday is Britain’s most productive day, with 24% of respondents claiming they are the most productive on the second day of the week. Monday and Wednesday were the second and third most productive days. Just 9% claimed they worked best on a Thursday, and 5% on a Friday, showing that our productivity levels do drop as we edge nearer to the weekend.

Does sleep affect productivity?

Sleep and productivity are closely linked, as we tend to lose our concentration levels if we’re short on sleep.

Our research found that the average worker goes to sleep at 22:30pm and wakes up at 6:45am. If you sleep or wake up later than this, then productivity levels will drop - our research showed that only 2% of respondents who wake up between 9 and 10am, and 7% who sleep later than 1am, said they feel productive all day. So, we’d urge you to get your sleep if you want a successful day ahead!

Commenting on the research findings, Cal Lee, global head of Workthere, says:

“Whilst overall productivity levels for UK office workers will inevitably vary from day to day it is interesting to see the average optimum times for productivity, particularly in terms of time and a specific day.

“It’s important to remember that each person works differently, and while some may prefer to work a 9-5, others like to work around their lives and schedule. One potential benefit of flexible working is the possibility for workers to manage their day around when their productivity levels may be at their highest, therefore helping to manage their time more efficiently. Flexible office spaces complement flexible working arrangements perfectly and allow employees to work at a time where they’ll be the most productive.”

Read our full press release here.