Study cites value of treadmills as productivity solution

Scientists at the University of Michigan have just completed an extensive study into the value of office treadmills as a productivity solution. 

The research – recently published in the peer-reviewed science resource PLOS ONE – reveals that walking while on the job can not only improve an employee's health and well-being, but also make them more efficient as well. 

In order to come to this conclusion, the researchers provided 40 employees from a US-based financial services company with specially designed treadmills that could be used in place of a regular computer chair. 

Each individual was able to carry out their daily tasks using a standard computer, phone and writing space, while also walking at a steady pace throughout the day. 

Unsurprisingly, the participants were able to burn around 7 to 8 per cent more calories than their sedentary counterparts. However, the scientists were interested to learn that treadmill workers saw a slight increase in overall productivity as well. 

Carlson School of Management professor of Work and Organizations Avner Ben-Ner, who worked on the study, admits that selling some employees on the value of office treadmills may be a challenge, but he believes that there is a market for an unusual productivity solution such as this. 

"I'm willing to bet my hat and my boots too that Millennials will be more open to something like this because they grew up and came of age in a time concerning these types of things," he says.

"It will be easier than trying to break in someone who is 50 years old and a lifelong sedentary person and get them to start walking."

If your recruitment agency isn't quite ready to begin throwing out your office chairs and installing exercise equipment, why not consider investing in tailored efficiency software instead? Technology such as this can boost productivity and accuracy across the board, without causing your employees to break a sweat in the process. 

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