Afternoon Slump and Friday Fatigue Impact Worker Productivity, Study Finds

Friday Fatigue

Afternoon Slump and Friday Fatigue Impact Worker Productivity, Study Finds

A recent study conducted by researchers at Texas A&M University has revealed that worker productivity tends to dip in the afternoon, with a particularly noticeable drop on Friday afternoons. The researchers utilized a unique data collection method to confirm the longstanding belief that workers are less active and more prone to errors in the afternoon, especially on Fridays.

The study was led by Drs. Taehyun Roh and Nishat Tasnim Hasan from the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, along with their colleagues from the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, and a graduate student from the Department of Health Behavior. The team analyzed the computer usage metrics of 789 employees at a large energy company in Texas over a two-year period from 2017 to 2018.

Unlike previous studies that relied on subjective and potentially invasive methods like employee self-reports or wearable technology, this study utilized objective data derived from computer usage metrics such as typing speed, typing errors, and mouse activity.

The researchers then compared these computer usage patterns across different days of the week and times of the day. They discovered that computer use increased during the week but saw a significant drop on Fridays. People typed more words and had more mouse movement, clicks, and scrolls from Monday through Thursday, but this activity decreased on Friday.

Interestingly, the study found that computer use decreased every afternoon, particularly on Friday afternoons. Employees were less active in the afternoons and made more typos—especially on Fridays. This trend aligns with similar findings that the number of tasks workers complete increases steadily from Monday through Wednesday, then decreases on Thursday and Friday.

In light of these findings, the researchers suggest that flexible work arrangements, such as hybrid work or a four-day work week, could potentially lead to happier and more productive employees. As of May 2023, about 60 percent of full-time, paid workers in the U.S. worked on-site all of the time. The remaining employees either work remotely or have a hybrid arrangement involving a combination of remote and on-site work.

A number of employees also adhere to a compressed workweek in which they work longer hours on fewer days. Previous studies have shown that those who work from home or work fewer days experience less stress from commuting, workplace politics, and other factors, leading to higher job satisfaction.

These flexible arrangements provide workers with more time for their families, reducing work-family conflicts. They also allow for more time for exercise and leisure activities, which can improve both physical and mental health. This could be an excellent opportunity for those in the standing desks/office health industry to promote products like the best sit stand desk or an electric height adjustable standing desk, which can further enhance the health benefits of flexible working arrangements.

Apart from improving employee well-being and productivity, flexible work arrangements could also have other beneficial effects such as reductions in electricity use, carbon footprint, and carbon dioxide emissions.

These findings can help business leaders identify strategies to optimize work performance and workplace sustainability. With the right approach, it is possible to turn Friday afternoons into a productive end to the workweek rather than a slump in productivity. The study is published in PLoS ONE.

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Guy Director
Higher Diploma in Mechanical Engineering. Ergomotion Director since 2005.

Google Reviews

Ergomotion

Google Reviews

Andrew Pieterse 14/06/24

Google
Great service and really quick shipping. It is great to know that you are getting quality parts from a Scandinavian manufacturer with your standing desk purchase rather than the cheap knock off stuff you get from other major brands. Reasonably priced for the quality too!

Janette Clarke 20/05/24

Google
Guy was very accommodating with meeting him at a time that suited me. He assembled the desk prior to me collecting so I only had to carry it inside with help (it's pretty heavy). The desk is great, the storage racks underneath with the 6 x built in powerpoints was worth the extra money. I have a functioning & tidy workplace.
Guy was brilliant, I highly recommend.
Janette

Nickel 10/05/24

Google
Have now purchased 2 stand up office desks off Guy, benchmark sales service from him, all via email, so easy; from quote to plug in, only matched by the strong quality of these machines, solid and stable. If only everything in life was this easy and reliable.

Jennifer Fadriquela 23/03/24

Google
I purchased an EDesk this month from Ergomotion, and it was a remarkably smooth transaction. Guy was eager to answer all my questions before my purchase. As a first-time buyer of a standing desk, I truly appreciated how he addressed my queries with thorough details and provided options within my budget.

The delivery process was also smooth, despite a slight delay in the ETA. Guy ensured I received all necessary updates from the courier/removalist.

I've been using the desk for a couple of weeks now and I'm satisfied with it. It's sturdy on all height adjustments and the motor works as expected. I also like oak finish because it's clean-looking and suits my room setup.

Overall, I'm happy with my purchase and I'll definitely recommend Ergomotion to someone looking for their desk needs.

Josh Oliver 04/02/24

Google
I've had an ergomotion desk for 10 years. It's still as good today as it was brand new. Over the years Guy has always responded promptly to any guidance I've needed (mostly help putting the desk back together after removalists take it apart).

Michael Cheung 18/01/24

Google
Great service from Guy and the team at Ergomotion! Helped with all my queries and was able to source a standing desk part for me when many others weren't able! Highly recommend!

Shao Lei 30/11/23

Google
Decent desk and awesome service. Highly recommend

Rod Hathway 10/11/23

Google
Awesome experience. Great value, super customer experience, ordered, assembled and picked up in 24 hours!

Dom K 06/11/23

Google
Skip the big name brands and buy from Guy instead, 10/10 linak parts with a very well built tabletop.

Chris Wu 06/11/23

Google
I purchased the edesk from Guy at Ergomotion. Guy was a pleasure to deal with and the desk arrived the next day. Guy was highly knowledgeable on the desk and provided very prompt support on the installation. I can highly recommend Ergomotion.
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