Research from Robert Half UK says despite expectations, four in five (80 per cent) businesses predict that employee productivity will either stay the same or rise during the summer months. The research also shows there are regional differences in opinions between the North and the South. Roughly a third (29 per cent) of businesses in the North expect productivity to drop, compared to just over one in 10 in the South West and Wales (13 per cent) and London and the South East (13 per cent).
The productivity drop off also seems to be more pronounced in larger businesses. Those with over 500 employees are more likely to experience a dip, with a quarter (25 per cent) claiming that employees become ‘somewhat’ or ‘much less’ productive in the summer months. In contrast, just 17 per cent of SMEs with less than 250 employees say the same.
“It remains to be seen whether businesses will be affected by the summer slump, but companies seem to be optimistic,” said Phil Sheridan, senior managing director at Robert Half UK. “It’s a time of year where employees often take the opportunity to have a break, relax and recharge their batteries. But by planning ahead and considering whether skilled temporary staff need to be brought in to cover specific projects, organisations can minimise any disruption and maintain their productivity levels.
“The summer months also prove to be a timely reminder that employee engagement is crucial to productivity, so think of ways to reward your staff such as an early finish on Fridays, summer treats in the office or a more relaxed dress policy,” concludes Sheridan. “Happy and productive employees ultimately benefit the bottom line.”