Office Worker Time Spend on Various Activities

Goals

To obtain a breakdown of how much time an office worker in the U.S. spends on various activities such as working at their desk, working from home, traveling, in conference rooms/meetings for the purposes of developing innovative tech tools and knowing which spaces to prioritize.

Early Findings

Preliminary research indicates there is significant data available on how an average worker spends their day, although statistics about time spent traveling and time actually spent at the desk is not as readily available. Here are the early findings from our research:

OVERALL STATISTICS

  • In 2018, 82% of American workers completed all or some of their work at their place of work, while 24% completed all or some of the work at home.
  • The average worker in the United States works 8.8 hours per day or 44 hours per week.

TIME AT DESK

  • The average worker spends five hours per day on their computers (which does not include "time spent in meetings, on calls, or checking email and Slack on your mobile device"). This would be 25 hours per week or 57% of a 44-hour work week.
  • The average office worker in the U.S. spends eight hours a week (18%) on their cell phone, doing tasks such as checking their email or visiting websites. Five hours (11%) of this is spent on personal activities.

TIME IN CONFERENCE/MEETING ROOMS

  • The average office employee spends five hours and three minutes per week in meetings, which would mean that for a typical work week of 44 hours, they spend about 11% of their time in meetings, which likely occurs in conference rooms or other types of meeting areas.
  • This is close to the 15% of an organization's collective time that is spent in meetings every week.
  • Senior executives are spending an average of 28 hours per week in meetings, which means that 66% of their time is spent in meeting areas (based on a 44-hour work week average).
  • Middle managers spend an average of 21 hours per week in meetings, which means that 48% of their time is spent in meeting areas (based on a 44-hour work week average).

TIME IN THE CAR

  • The daily commute for American drivers averages 35 minutes, which means that they spend 1 hour and 10 minutes every day in their vehicles.
  • Since this is not officially a part of the work day, it is not a percentage of time taken from the work week; however, it would constitute 5% of the total number of hours in a day.
  • Time spent traveling during the work day is not readily available and likely varies by industry (i.e. 28% of salespeople travel for business compared to 4% of clerical workers).

TIME WORKING AT HOME

  • The time spent working at home varies by industry.
  • In the Marketing and Advertising industry, the average worker spends 6.3 hours each week working at home, which, in a 44-hour week, this would mean that 14% of their time is spent working at home.
  • In Wholesale and Retail, the average worker spends 5.2 hours each week working at home, which, in a 44-hour week, this would mean that 12% of their time is spent working at home.
  • These may be overtime hours spent at home, which means to provide a more accurate estimate, the number of overtime hours worked by industry would be needed.
  • Overall, 26% of work is done at home compared to 74% in the office.
  • In addition to this public search, we scanned our proprietary research database of over 1 million sources and were unable to find any specific research reports that address your goals

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