Business unionHow happiness at work impacts the bottom line…

Happiness at Work. That short phrase can sound pretty flaky to commercial board directors who need to ensure that their shareholders and stakeholders are convinced that they are doing their due diligence. In others words getting maximum bang for their buck.

But our research at the iOpener Institute for People and Performance has empirical evidence which shows how the happiness at work can really add tangibly to the bottom line.

To prove this hypothesis, we’ve run an extensive, rigorous and robust research program
since 2005 into the Science of Happiness at Work. And we’ve found that a happy
worker is a high performing one. Our data shows that employees who are happiest
at work:

-Take one tenth the sick-leave of their least happy colleagueshappiness at work

-Are six times more energised

-Intend to stay twice as long in their organisations

-Are twice as productive

Looking slightly deeper, the data we’ve gathered from 32,000 respondents shows that employees who are happiest at work report being “on task” 80% of their working week. That’s four days a week. Now you wouldn’t want anyone to be on task 100% of the time: it would be unrealistic as we need to chat and connect. But we also get stuck when our laptops crash, others don’t deliver and stuff suddenly pops up which temporarily derails us. So 80% time on task is pretty good.

On the other hand employees who are really unhappy at work spend only 40% of their time on task. That’s two days a week. And it represents a huge cost to any organisation. In effect an organisation is losing about 100 days work – or about 3.5 months for every really unhappy employee.

The data presents some really interesting metrics-led facts about the cost of unhappiness at work.


Jessica Pryce-Jones

Founder of The iOpener Institute

To hear more on the link between happiness and productivity, Jessica will be exploring further at this year’s Workplace Week Convention in London on 5th Nov. To book your place now or find out more visit