February 3, 2005

Colder Temperatures Cut Into Productivity

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A recent study by a Cornell professor may have your boss turning up the office thermostat. Prof. Alan Hedge, ergonomics, discovered a direct correlation between indoor environmental conditions and worker productivity. He found that typing errors increase and worker productivity lessens as the office temperature decreases.

To conduct his research, Hedge measured the natural variations in temperature every 15 minutes inside an office building in Orlando, Fl. over a three week work period. Hedge also measured the amount of typing, typing errors and the amount of mousing that each worker did every 15 minutes.

“The results showed a significant association between the air temperature and the number of keystrokes and the accuracy of typing,” Hedge said in an e-mail As the air temperature fluctuated between 68-77