The Ten Second Cost

The Ten Second Cost


The average person doesn’t comprehend the fiscal impact long elevator wait times have on an employer. Every second a passenger waits for an elevator is costing their employer money. The following scenario shows what just an extra 10 seconds a day, waiting on an elevator, can cost an employer. Unless you provide meals for your employees, this scenario can easily multiply by two and three , maybe as many as eight times, depending on the number of times an employee travels between floors.

It is not uncommon for an employee to get to the office, log in to their work station, go down to Starbucks to get a cup of coffee (2 Trips). At break time, there is another trip down and up to go get some air (2 Trips). Lunch is another trip down and up (2 Trips). In areas where smoking is still popular,  a couple more trips up and down. (4 Trips. Once in the morning, once in the afternoon).

Image result for stopwatch

10 Seconds X 100 People = 1000 Seconds Daily
1000 Seconds X 5 Days = 5000 Seconds / Weekly
5000 Seconds Weekly X 52 weeks = 260,000 Seconds Annually
260,000 Seconds / 60 Seconds = 4,333 minutes
4,333 Minutes / 60 Minutes = 72 Hours
72 Hours X $100 per hour = $7,200 Dollars of lost production per 100 employees every year. So, to put it in a nut shell, 10 seconds of additional wait time costs an employer roughly $72 dollars a year per employee.

Say you do have 100 employees or tenants and they actually average $100 an hour with benefits, overhead and lost time. What happens if they actually travel up and down 8 times a day as outlined. That’s $57,600 in productivity loss! That’s more than a month’s rent on a 15,000 ft/sq suite. Could pay for one hell of a Christmas party, right?

Granted, this is an extreme and if your employees are actually doing this, you probably need to explore the benefits of hiring a new office manager, but hopefully you can see our point. Time is money.

If a building is “under elevatored” or the elevators are not running up to their fullest potential, it is costing an employer a lot of money in the loss of productivity. You should be able to show your tenants that your building has acceptable wait times or at least know if your wait times are unacceptable. You should also want to know if there are cost effective opportunities to improve service. Often times, it is as simple as decreasing the dwell times to the ADA minimum allowed. Reducing the overall “Round Trip Time” of a bank of 6 elevators by 1 second each will, in theory, reduce your “wait Time” by 6 seconds, and that shouldn’t cost you a penny. If your response time is in the 40 second range, dropping it by 6 seconds, generally, will reduce the aggravation of extended wait times. This alone may be what it takes to keep a tenant happy. And who doesn’t like a happy tenant, right?

Elevator Analytics

One thought on “The Ten Second Cost
  1. The typical wait for an elevator in my building is well over 40 seconds. Even longer in the morning when people are coming to work. Is this because there are to few elevators or are they just slow?

    1. The only way to truly know is to perform a traffic study. There may be many factors that contribute to this condition. If you have a consultant, you should contact them. If you have an Otis EMS Panorama system, we would be happy to work with you. Keep in mind, Byrd Analytics, LLC is not a consulting firm, we do data analysis, so we will only report on what we find. This will generally be enough information for you to make an intelligent decision on how to proceed. We will not recommend what to do.

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