21 December 2018 | Herpreet Kaur Grewal
More than half of UK employees would turn down job opportunities because of inadequate facilities, according to research by appliance manufacturer Miele.
The study, from Miele's professional division, has revealed that dirty office kitchens are causing workplace rifts and disrupting performance, as nine out of 10 workers surveyed wants improved facilities.
Around 44 per cent of office workers also say that their colleagues' dishwashing abilities are well below par.
The survey of 500 workers found that organisations could face difficulties recruiting new talent if they can't provide high-quality kitchen facilities; 54 per cent of respondents admit they would consider turning down a job if the kitchen was not up to scratch.
Unwashed dishes are the most common kitchen bugbear for 45 per cent of respondents, while grimy work surfaces, dirty appliances and overflowing bins are also leaving many UK employees feeling disgusted with colleagues. Unsurprisingly, 75 per cent of individuals feel that their home kitchen is much cleaner than their office facilities.
Workers are also more than happy to make their kitchen cleanliness dissatisfaction known, with 76 per cent saying they would hang a sign in the kitchen while 41 per cent would 'out' a colleague in front of other employees and 55 per cent would report a culprit to management. This highlights the wider effect that unclean kitchen facilities can have on employee happiness and job satisfaction.
Miele commissioned the independent survey with Sapio Research as part of its new ProfiLine Dishwasher launch.
The research also highlighted that many office kitchens lack the appliances needed to uphold a high standard of kitchen etiquette. Only a third have a dishwasher and even then, not all employees use the appliances available to their advantage. Only a fifth of people polled rate their own dishwashing as excellent, and a quarter admit to not emptying the dishwasher when it has finished its cycle.
Despite these issues, the office kitchen appears to be a vital part of working life and 61 per cent of respondents said they use the facilities up to several times a day, with 35 per cent feeling as though the kitchen offers an opportunity to socialise while 34 per cent like having access to free drinks such as tea and coffee.
Employees are also keen to share what their dream office kitchen would be like -48 per cent say they want comfy sofas for chilling out, 41 per cent demand free Wi-Fi, 55 per cent feel as though TV and music on demand would be a welcome addition, and 38 per cent say an on-site coffee shop is a must.
The research also shows the need for better appliances in office kitchens with 47 per cent feeling as though having more cleaning equipment and white goods such as dishwashers would help to improve the quality of the office kitchen and help to maintain cleanliness standards.