Coburg Banks | Multi-sector UK recruitment agency

20 Hilarious Office Pranks

By Charles Trivett | May 20, 2015 | Friday Funnies

Do you see yourself as somewhat of a prankster?

Or, like poor Gareth from The Office, do you often find yourself the butt of the joke?

Recruiter Pro Tip

One of my all-time favourite, easy-to-pull-off office pranks is all down to a simple Google Chrome Extension called ‘nCage’.

When downloaded, the app replaces every single photo on the victim’s computer with one of Nicolas Cage.

Of course, this simple prank takes just a few seconds to set up and deactivate…which is more than I can say for the 20 hilarious and elaborate examples below.

If you’re looking for inspiration for your next big prank, then you’ve come to the right place!

(Be careful though! We don’t want any of you getting the sack for these antics!)

1. April Foils!

office covered in foilThis is a great one, but it certainly takes a fair bit of effort to pull off.

Pranksters spent hours covering the entire office, including all the bits and bobs like scissors,  keyboards and rubbish bins in foil, before their colleague arrived for a hectic day at work.

The end result looks like something out of a sci-fi film!

2. A Sinister Disguise.

man dressed up as car seatAre you a fan of the more sinister office pranks?

Why not dress up as a colleague’s car seat and wait for them to finish work?

This prank must have taken some real scheming and I have no idea where you’d get your hands on a car-seat suit (especially at short notice!)

Very resourceful, if a little bit terrifying!

3. In-cress-ting!

cress growing out of the keyboardDid you ever grow cress as a child?

It’s so easy to plant, that it could pretty much grow anywhere; in potatoes, from cotton wool, in a computer keyboard!

This green-fingered little prank is perfect for those with a knack for gardening!

4. A.A.A.Achoo!

How to get your own back on a colleague who keeps moaning about ill employees in the office.

You can really see the anger behind those ‘trying-so-hard-to-smile’ eyes!

5. The QWERDY Keyboard.

keyboard with jumbled up keysSimple, yet effective.

It would certainly get on your nerves, mixing up your Us with your Fs and your Ts with your Ds!

This works particularly well if you pull it off stealthily.

Would you have noticed, if I hadn’t pointed it out?

6. Just a Bit Seal-y!

photo of a sea lionThis prank is so crazy, it just might work!

Pranksters asked a colleague to give Mrs. C Lyon a call, to pass on a really important message.

The number they had quoted was for the local zoo (Mrs. Sea Lion…)

This one is a little silly, but if it worked…

7. Feeling Low?

Has anyone ever borrowed your office chair and messed up the way you had it set up?

How frustrating is it? It’s almost impossible to get it back to the perfect position.

Now imagine facing the same thing, every day, without knowing why.

Just pop over to your colleague’s desk every time they disappear and lower their chair!

Warning: It will drive them mad.

8. The Maze.

You must have seen or heard of this prank before?

The one that scares the life out of you with a terrifying image while you’re concentrating hard on a computer game?

It is slightly unfair to take this kind of prank warfare into the office, but this poor woman’s reaction is priceless!

9. “One Cappuccino Please.”

Coffee Machine with 'voice activated' label stuck onto itThis prank is legendary and all you need to do is print off a label, sit back and relax.

Subtle and inoffensive, it’s a great prank for beginners.

What other machines in your office could you sabotage?

10. Why Does Everyone Love Nicolas?

nicolas cages face, hidden beneath a toilet seat

He crops up time and time again in office pranks, both on and off the computer!

In this prank, he’s even managed to make his way to the toilet – terrifying.

It must be that lovely smile…

11. Toot Far?

horn beneath the chair so it will go off when sat onThis easy-to-replicate office prank is particularly cruel and will undoubtedly leave your victim trembling.

Also, you might want to get the rest of the office in on it as you really don’t want to have to explain to your boss why the whole office have gone deaf!

12. This Prankster Has No Soul.

bowl of skittles, reeses pieces and M&MWhoever pulled off this fantastically fresh and taste-confusing prank will be regretting it, if the angry note is anything to go by.

The combination of Skittles, M&Ms and Reese’s Pieces clearly isn’t very appealing!

Sweet-treat assassin, you should be ashamed.

13. Garden Leave…

desk made of freshly grown grassIf you liked the look of the ‘cress-keyboard’ then the grass-desk will be right up your street.

This is an absolutely fabulous effort that actually took a whole three weeks to pull off!

Click here to see the grass-desk unfold!



14. Tis’ the Season.

a desk wrapped in Christmas paper, like a children's fort I’ve seen desks covered in newspaper, wrapping paper, foil and cling film, but I’ve never seen anything quite like this!

This lucky lady’s got her own private den to shut out the world and get all of her work done.

What a Christmas treat!

15. Toilet Humour.

picture of an air horn disguised as an air freshenerIf you thought that the horn on the chair prank was a bit harsh, then you’re going to love this one.

The ingenious prankster swapped an air freshener in the toilet with a big horn (disguised by a label) and simply waited for a toot.

You’ve really got to feel for the named-and-shamed colleague who emerged!

16. Birthday Fun and Games!

photo of cake with icing saying 'Find the toenail'I have no words…

I just genuinely hope that this was a joke.


17. This Prank’s a Bit Rubbish!

Desk pranksoffice filled with rubbish. are the most common form of mischief in the workplace.

Pranksters just love to fill up work-spaces with all kinds of things, while their colleagues are away.

This particular desk-hijack is pretty unique and very unhygienic; what on earth would you do if you came back to this pile of rubbish?

I’m not sure the boss would be too pleased either, so perhaps consider a cleaner option.

You could fill your colleagues desk with balloons, post-its or transform it into a ball-pit like our clever pranksters below!

18. The ball-pit hit.

desk converted into a ball pit Remind your colleague of the good old days, with an adult-sized ball pit.

Fun while it lasts, but I wonder who’s going to clean up all those balls after the inevitable pandemonium ends!

19. The Office Classic!

A stapler in jellyYou’ll probably recognise this workplace prank from popular TV show The Office.

The relaxed and low-maintenance task of placing stationery inside a bowl of jelly, is cheap, harmless and doesn’t take too much time or effort.

For originality, you could come up with all sorts of different stationery items to mould…pencils, calculators, a mouse?

20. What a Doughnut!

doughnut box filled with broccolli saying 'We ate them all - have some broccolli'Last but not least, this truly unforgivable prank, which you can aim at the entire office, will certainly leave you with a mutiny on your hands.

Replace all of the doughnuts in a Krispy Kreme (or other well-known doughnut make) box with broccoli.

Send an email around, informing your colleagues that you’ve left them some treats in the kitchen.

Enjoy the aftermath of your sabotage!


In truth, office pranks can go too far sometimes, but if they’re handled sensitively and everyone involved is having a good time, they could significantly raise employee engagement.

Recruiter Pro Tip

Every business should attempt to maintain a balance with employees that have fun at work and love their company but also know exactly where to draw the line.

So, as a boss, don’t be too harsh and try to have a little bit of fun with your colleagues!

PS. This is what happens when a prank goes too far…

bear in the office pranks

- Charles Trivett
Charles - blog author

Charles Trivett

Charles heads up Coburg Banks’ IT Division, and has worked in recruitment for nearly 20 years.  His knowledge of how to optimise and get the most from a recruitment campaign is second to none, and he now works with a select handful of clients in maximising their recruitment ROI.

> More blog posts by Charles Trivett

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