Call Center Productivity Over 6 Months Following a Standing Desk Intervention

Source: Gregory Garrett, Mark Benden, Ranjana Mehta, Adam Pickens, Camille Peres & Hongwei Zhao, IIE Transactions on Occupational Ergonomics and Human Factors, Published online: 24 May 2016
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From the abstract:
Background: Many office employees are spending up to 90% of their workday seated, and employers are considering stand-capable desks as a way to increase physical activity throughout the day. When deciding on adoption of stand-capable workstations, a major concern for employers is that the benefits, over time, may not offset the initial cost of implementation.
Methods: This study compared objective measures of productivity over time between a group of stand-capable desk users and a seated control group in a call center. Comparison analysis was completed for continuous six-month secondary data for 167 employees, across two job categories.
Results: Users of stand-capable desks were ∼45% more productive on a daily basis compared to their seated counterparts. Further, productivity of the stand-capable desk users significantly increased over time, from ∼23% in the first month to ∼53% over the next six months. Finally, this productivity increase was similar for employees across both job categories.
Conclusions: These findings suggest important benefits of employing stand-capable desks in the work force to increase productivity. Prospective studies that include employee health status, perceptions of (dis)comfort and preference over time, along with productivity metrics, are needed to test the effectiveness of stand-capable desks on employee health and performance.
Stand-capable desk use in a call center: a six-month follow-up pilot study
Source: A.W. Pickens, M.M. Kress, M.E. Benden, H. Zhao, M. Wendel, J.J. Congleton, Public Health, Volume 135, June 2016
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From the abstract:
•The current study is a longitudinal cohort study following stand-capable workstation intervention usage patterns in an in-situ environment.
•Results of sedentary time, among many other measurements including body discomfort data were tracked over baseline, three, and six month follow-up periods.
•Subjects were in a regional call center and online surveys were used to collect discomfort and self-reported seated/standing habits, physical activity, and demographics. Wearable ActivPal® sensors were used to monitor actual sedentary time in-situ for each subject.
•Results indicated a strong adoption phase, as corresponds with current literature. However, when tracked over time, study results indicated no significant change in the stand-capable workstation user habits over the 6-month period.
•This is something unique to this study as most current studies indicate a significant drop-off in stand-capable desk use over time after the initial adoption phase.