Workers See Much Room For Cubicle Improvement

March 3, 2004 ( - Pointy dunce cap and all, the majority of workplace cubicles have been sat in the corner for not making the grade.

The vast majority of US office workers (42%) give their cubicle or office a “C”, followed by 38% posting a “B” on the desk’s report card and only 6% doling out an “A.” The remaining 14% were not so kind: 10% handing down a “D” grade and 4% thinking their piece of office space deserves to by flunked, according to a Logitech business survey, conducted by Connecticut-based Directive Analytics.

A quarter of the survey sample felt as though letter grades did not do their particular workspace justice. Nine percent of the respondents did not want their mother to see where they work, 7% said their desk was a safety hazard, 6% were embarrassed by their space and 3% dread going to work because of the condition of their space. Overall, topping the annoyance chart for workers rating their workspace was lack of privacy (43%) followed by 24% noting too many cords on the desktop as bothersome.

Once the figures are put into the slide rule, the end results are a 2.3 grade point average, or C+ in alphabet system. “Whether because of clutter, lack of personal input or poor computer systems, US office workers are often displeased or see room for improvement with the state of their workspace,” Brenda Batenburg , senior manager of market research for Logitech said in a news release.

Employers can stay after school for a little tutoring to bring the grade up. Of those who graded their workspace as a “C” or below, 59% said they would feel more valued by their employers if they had more say in defining their work environment. The vast majority of workers (84%) said their comfort level in the workspace could be improved. “With a little more control of layout and furniture – and some better computer systems and peripherals – workers tend to feel happier and even more valued. The overall design of the workspace is critical when considering just how much time people spend in their workspace, and what’s expected of them,” Batenburg added.

In fact, the 1,003 US office workers polled spend an average of 37.5 hours a week grazing on the cube farm. On average, that figure is 14.2 hours more per week the survey respondent spends chained to the desk than in their living room/family room, and 65% say the overall design of their workspace is of equal importance to the design of their living room/family room, while nearly eight out of 10 (78%) said it is important to be able to personalize their workspace.

Among the design modifications, 23% of respondents said they would like more control in choosing their computer peripherals, while 30% want more input in choosing their computer system. In all, less than a quarter (24%) of those canvassed feel their workspace was an accurate representation of themselves, 25% said they have little or no ability to change their workspace.