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A cup of coffee with some peace and quiet – what most London workers desire

3 min read

22 September 2015

London office workers would rather see the back of their colleagues than say goodbye to coffee.

Workers in the English capital have confessed that the one thing they can do without in their offices is fellow employees.

According to the “London Office Workers’ Survey 2015”, when asked the question: “What is the one thing you can’t live without in the office?” only four per cent said their friends and fellow colleagues.

The survey, carried out by Swift Office Cleaning Services, suggested that companies moving towards open plan working instead of the traditional segmented offices are getting it wrong. Workers, it seems, would prefer the return of the individual office format.

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Indeed, open-plan working was described as being too noisy and cluttered for most workers, with a fifth stating that office space would be one thing they would change if they had the opportunity – be it having their own office or to have smaller office areas rather than the large open plan layout.

A tenth said they would change the people they work with including “the boss”. Workers wanted better teamwork, cleaner and more tidy colleagues and to “get rid” of the lazy workers.

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The survey also discovered that the thing we most can’t live without in the office is coffee, with 27 per cent stating this is what they needed most. Only four per cent said their mobile phones.

The minimalist design of many London offices was also a gripe for many workers, with ten per cent wanting to paint their office a brighter colour and have “less clinical white on the walls”.

There were calls to make offices “more colourful and spacious” with 66 per cent of people questioned giving their office décor a mark of four or five out of five for importance, compared with just two per cent who gave it little or no value at all.

Of course, given the survey’s authors are cleaners, they found that companies who get “the environment and cleanliness right could see their work productivity soaring” – with 90 per cent of London workers saying they feel more productive in a clean environment.

Most workers also called on their bosses to stop fellow colleagues from eating biscuits and their lunch at the desk by installing separate office areas where workers can eat and relax.