Generous bonus packages and unlimited holidays do less to motivate British workers than the opportunity to have flexible working hours, according to a new study.
52 per cent of British workers picked flexible hours as the perk that most motivates them to be a better employee in a survey conducted by Workfront. In second place was ‘generous bonus packages’ at 40 per cent, with unlimited holidays coming in third at 31 per cent. Although there has been a rise in companies offering gym memberships in employee benefits packages, only 20 per cent picked it as a prime motivator in the workplace.
The survey of 1,000 UK office workers also revealed that the carrot rather than stick was a better motivator. When asked ‘what influences you to excel at work the most’ 37 per cent of workers cited praise from my manager or boss. A further 36 per cent of workers regarded ‘criticism from a manager or boss’ as their top de-motivator at work.
“There is often a chasm between what businesses think their employees need and what their employees actually need. It’s a common misconception that workers are only motivated by money, and the results from this study make that quite clear,” Jada Balster, marketing director, EMEA at Workfront said.
“The modern employee hugely values their ‘work-life balance’ and it is imperative that businesses recognise this shift as it can be the difference between thriving and failing. The implementation of modern work management technologies in the workplace will give employees the flexibility to manage their hours in ways that best suit their working styles. The result will be happy, motivated workers and increased productivity.”
The UK is also shaping up to be a national of go-getters, according to the study. 58 per cent consider themselves to be self-motivated and 35 per cent cite self satisfaction as a top motivator to excel at work.
The office environment
When it comes to how the office environment affects productivity, it’s a pretty close call between open plan and individual offices. Workers stated they are more productive when they can see and talk to their other colleagues, while 29 per cent prefer to be behind a door.
Outside of the office, 34 per cent of workers feel they are most productive when they are able to work from home away from distractions. Another 20 per cent relied on caffeine-power and preferred to work from a coffee shop when they needed to be at their productive best.
Over 83 per cent of workers admit to listening music to improve their productivity, with R&B topping the preferences, followed closely by Rock, and ambient sounds like crashing waves or rainfall.