Work productivity in the office and at home during the COVID-19 pandemic: A cross-sectional analysis of office workers in Japan

Wataru Umishio*, Naoki Kagi, Ryo Asaoka, Motoya Hayashi, Takao Sawachi, Takahiro Ueno

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has drastically changed work styles and environments. Given the coexistence of work in the office and work from home (WFH) in the future, studies are needed to identify ways to increase productivity when working in both places. We conducted a questionnaire survey and environment measurements of 916 workers in 22 offices across 2 weeks in November–December 2020 in Japan. While average workdays at the offices decreased from 4.9 to 3.9 days/week, those at homes increased from 0.1 to 1.1 days/week due to COVID-19, indicating an increase in the relative importance of WFH. Compared to the office, the satisfaction rate was lower for lighting, spatial, and information technology (IT) environments, but higher for thermal, air, and sound environments at home. Although it was easier to concentrate on work and to refresh at home, workers experienced challenges associated with business communication from home. Meanwhile, in the office, satisfaction with COVID-19 countermeasures was significantly associated with work productivity. Furthermore, lower PM2.5 concentration was associated with greater satisfaction with COVID-19 countermeasures, indicating that reducing PM2.5 may increase satisfaction with COVID-19 countermeasures and work productivity. We expect these findings will help improve work productivity in the New Normal era.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere12913
JournalIndoor Air
Volume32
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Jan
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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