Employees more productive now than before recession

But many workers burned out, more stressed: Survey
|hrreporter.com|Last Updated: 07/28/2011

One-quarter (26 per cent) of employers in the United States think workers are less productive in the summer and nearly one-half (45 per cent) think their workers are burned out on their jobs, according to a CareerBuilder survey.

Nicer weather, vacation fever and kids being out of school led the list of reasons for the perceived summer productivity dip, found the survey of 2,662 hiring managers and 5,299 workers.

But looking at overall productivity trends year-round, 30 per cent of employers say workers are more productive today than before the recession began while 12 per cent feel workers are less productive than before the recession.

Employers who saw a rise in worker productivity during the recession primarily attribute the increase to the fear of losing a job and the effects of a downsized workforce on individual workloads. In addition, 73 per cent say the increase continues today and 14 per cent state productivity has increased even more.

However, 77 per cent of workers said they are sometimes or always burned out in their jobs and 43 per cent said their stress levels on the job have increased over the last six months.

The rising stress could be a result of heavier workloads. Nearly one-half (46 per cent) of employees reported an increase in their workloads in the last six months, while only eight per cent said their workloads decreased.

“The recession produced consequences for not just those who were laid off but also for the many employees who were asked to work harder as a result of leaner staffs,” said Brent Rasmussen, president of CareerBuilder North America. “While getting more out of a smaller workforce is a sign of organizational agility during unpredictable times, it’s hard to see such yields in productivity holding forever. Headcount will be needed to meet increasing demands.”

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