Employees in more than 1 in 3 UK workplaces are enduring annoying or unnecessary rules, with almost a quarter of employees (22.5%) consequently feeling that their employer does not trust them.
The survey of 1000 British workers, conducted by CV-Library, found that over half (57%) of employees will ignore any rules they deem to be ‘silly’.
Most examples of workplace rules which fell foul of employee opinion fit into one of the following five categories:
1. Toilet trouble - many employees reported that their bathroom breaks come with a time limit or require permission from a line manager. Some are even searched in advance.
2. Dress code directives - some respondents have to wear clothing of a particular colour in order to match the employers’ branding, while some women report that they are not allowed to wear trousers. One individual even said that they were sent home for not dressing down.
3. Silent treatment – several employees said they are banned from talking in the workplace outside a designated area.
4. Timekeeping – in one business employees reported that they lose 15 minutes’ pay if they arrive 2 minutes late, and in another staff on their lunch break cannot travel more than 20 metres from the office to prevent them from returning late.
5. Refreshment rules – some businesses don’t allow their staff to drink water, another will not let workers carry drinks up and down the stairs and one won’t let employees have drinks on their desk in case of spillages.
Lee Biggins, founder and Managing Director of CV-Library, responded to the research as follows: “Every workplace needs rules: otherwise you’d simply never get things done! That said it’s clear that many of the rules highlighted in our research are just ridiculous. Employees want to feel trusted and while one workplace can differ massively to another, you have to treat your staff like adults”
Workplace rules are one of many factors which can affect employee engagement levels within an organisation. To learn more about how MSB can measure and improve employee engagement within your business, please visit the new MSB website – www.msbconsultancy.com