In a field study conducted by Professor Bloom and his team from Stanford University, the data concluded that employees of a travel agency who worked from home led to a 13% performance increase. Employees taking fewer breaks and sick leave accounted for 9% of this increase. The other 4% was because of a quieter and more convenient work environment, which led to greater efficiency at work. In fact, the employees reported greater satisfaction at work while working from home.
In a more recent field study by Assistant Professor Boltz from University Paris, her research team concluded work schedule flexibility was instrumental in improving work performance.
There were two groups of works in this study, the first group had flexible working hours, whereas the second followed the fixed schedule. Both groups performed simple data entry tasks so that the researchers could compare both groups of outputs. At the end of the research, employees with flexible schedules reported work accuracy of up to 10% more than employees with fixed hours. Additionally, the first group of employees also spent less time at work, 7% less than the second group of employees.
While work flexibility can help improve employee performance, the environment must also be able to accommodate the needs of the employee and his work. In a study of workplace influence on workers’ performance, DeMarco and Lister, principals of the Atlantic Systems Guild, concluded that privacy and physical floor space were the top environmental aspects that affected their workers’ performance.