Science Says You Should Have Multiple Large Monitors

Back in October, we learned that PwC auditors had finally whined loud enough to earn a second monitor. Up until that point, it was only by the grace of God that anyone was able to accomplish anything and it probably explains the firm's dreadful PCAOB inspection results.

Some found it strange that a firm of Papa Whiskey Charlie's stature would just now being throwing another screen to its army of opiners. After all, a second monitor fell like manna to McGladrey auditors several months before the PwC announcement. Firms of lesser prominence have been arming their own employees with monitors long ago. But this is neither here nor there.  

The unfortunate situation that remains is the accountants — not just auditors — out there who are serving the capital markets without a second monitor. They have to exist in this world with a solitary screen that barely allows them to view a spreadsheet of 20 rows before having to scroll. The thought of it is heartbreaking, especially when you consider that there are only so many billable hours in a day*. 

How do we best help these unfortunate souls? Rather than rely on anecdotes as evidence, perhaps science will convince their overlords that true productivity demands more screens. In a productivity myth debunking post (whole thing is worth a read), Lifehacker has a rundown of some studies on the subject:

A number of the articles several years ago pushed the idea that multiple displays make us more productive, but the studies they were based on concluded something very different. Here's what they actually said:
Okay, so the results are mixed; how do you best spin this?

Simple: for most people who do heavy text or spreadsheet-based tasks in relatively few open applications, real estate matters more than number of displays. For people who need delineation between running applications, windows, or workspaces, number of displays matters more than real estate

In other words, not only do you need multiple monitors, you need larger, multiple monitors. You're welcome.  

Seven Productivity Myths, Debunked by Science (and Common Sense) [Lifehacker]

* The answer is 24.

Latest Accounting Jobs--Apply Now:

Have something to add to this story? Give us a shout by email, Twitter, or text/call the tipline at 202-505-8885. As always, all tips are anonymous.

Comments are closed.

Related articles

Deloitte Has Calculated the Tangible and Intangible Value of the Roman Colosseum Because of Course They Did

Deloitte got their calculators out and put a dollar value on The Colosseum of Rome, the largest amphitheater built during the Roman Empire, the largest standing amphitheater in the world today, and top Italian tourist destination. Despite listening to Tiziano Ferro for 20 years, my Italian sucks so here’s Google’s translation of the newly released […]

Happy 4th of July and Also a Lesson in How Not to Be

On this, the best holiday of the summer, let us all try not to be angry and bitter like this guy who got mad at KPMG for flexing Omaha Steaks on Facebook many years ago: Speaking of steaks, did they ever come back after The Great Unsteakoning of 2020? Stay safe out there everyone and […]