Work Efficiency - Trends

Internal and external distractions can lead to inefficiencies in the workplace. Understand efficiency trends over time to gauge whether teams are wrestling with issues over time or during specific weeks in which there may have been a project pause, strategy shift, or process delay (perhaps a two weeks drop) versus a team that’s losing engagement and strategy alignment week over week (steady decline over time).

Key Questions:


Does my team have healthy (efficient) work habits week over week? Month over a month?

Efficiency leads to healthy work habits because distractions are mitigated, unproductive activities are at a low, and thus, we see signs of employees likely engaged in their work and aligned to its purpose. We care most about efficiency over time to understand whether there are steady declines that suggest a growing disengagement or lack of alignment. A weekly dip can likely be tied to either holiday distractions or smaller-scale distractions.



A. Working Hours by Day Trend

  • Total Hours / Day vs. Average: It is helpful to understand the average total hours employees are putting at the computer. These numbers shed light on potential fatigue or strain. We don’t set goals for total time, as it consists of unproductive time as well. Therefore, we compare it to the average to understand when total hours fluctuate for employees.
  • Productive Hours / Day vs. Goal: Evaluating Productive Hours over a period of time can help managers surface variations in employee habits. By setting productivity goals, further insight can be garnered around specific weeks that teams fall above or below goals.

Productivity Lab Tip

Sometimes it makes sense why weeks are low-- maybe there are holidays or company shutdowns. Be sure to recall weekly context and external events before drawing conclusions and taking action.

  • Focused Hours / Day vs. Goal: This insight sheds important detail surrounding employees’ focus habits. Focus time can vary depending on functions and roles within a group. It is important to set goals specific to a team’s responsibilities in order to draw accurate conclusions from this chart.



B. Efficiency Trends:

Productivity Lab Tip

High efficiency in this chart, combined with healthy Total Hours Day vs. Average reflects a highly productive and healthy workload balance across the organization.

  • Productivity Efficiency % Trend: Productivity Efficiency shows managers the degree in which employees are engaging in productive activity compared to total time (productive and non-business) at their computers.
  • Focus Efficiency % Trend: Focus is a subset of productivity time. In the Focus Efficiency % Trend, managers can understand the degree of focus time versus total time week over week. High focus efficiency suggests that employees are spending considerable time throughout their day in deep, undistracted work. For particular roles, those with an emphasis on innovation, research, and development, this is to be expected. For those roles that require more management and meeting time, we are likely to see lower efficiency % over time.


Learn more about the different metrics included in ActivTrak Premium by accessing our data glossary.



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