The research found that 39 per cent of workers regularly stayed late or arrived early during the last year, in a bid to seem more dedicated to their job than their colleagues.
Over a quarter said they consistently worked longer days than were actually needed to do their job effectively.
Employees were found to be most likely to stay longer at work when a pay review was imminent, a new boss had been appointed or redundancies had been announced.
Those employees working extended hours were found to be committing between an hour and two hours extra a day, adding a minimum of half a day extra to their working week, solely to impress others.
Time wasting tasks of choice included browsing the internet, emailing friends and doing menial, non-urgent tasks such as filing emails and organising their calendar.
Recent research revealed that working for more than 40 hours a week led to losses in productivity but it seems thousands of workers across the country are ignoring this advice.
A spokesman from officebroker.com, who assist thousands of small businesses each year, says the ‘faking it’ office phenomenon has poor long term implications for both the employee and their employer.
He said: “The general consensus is that many workers across the country are putting in longer office hours than ever before. What our research has found however is that many are doing it in a bid to improve their office image and win favour, rather than because their workload demands it.
“People are sitting idle in their office in a bid to stand out from the colleagues and impress their bosses. This means a poorer work life balance and ultimately no productivity gains for the firm – just increasingly tired workers – which benefits nobody.
“It was also interesting to note that workers were planning when to put in the longer hours, choosing to spend more time in the office when a pay rise, redundancy or new appointment was on the horizon.”
He concluded: “It’s interesting that people believe that being seen to be in the office for longer makes them seem productive and dedicated, when the reality could be quite different.”