Workers spend an average of 8 hours a day in their office or workplace. However, research conducted by VoucherCloud shows that an average employee is productive for only two hours and twenty-three minutes each day. While the reason for their unproductiveness can be many - several studies conducted on productivity indicate the physical environment to be one of the most significant factors in establishing a person's ability to focus effectively. Read more on office design for productivity.
Office Design for Productivity
Moreover, a strategic office layout, ergonomic furniture, and better access to health checks can help minimize potential health issues. It will also keep stress and fatigue at bay, allowing the workers to excel in their everyday work activities.
In the guide below, let's look at some key aspects of office designing that can be crucial in determining the employees' satisfaction with their hosted environment.
Light and Ventilation
Since the employees spend a large chunk of their day inside the office, you must provide them with an adequately lit office and adequately ventilated area to ensure their comfort. In fact, several health experts have stated that workplace design which allows ample light and properly ventilated seating area, finds their staff to be healthier and more energized.
A study by the Department of Design and Environmental Analysis also shows that employees seated within 10 feet of a window report 84% fewer headaches, eye strain, and blurred vision compared to those who lack exposure to natural light.
Another research shows fresh air improves employee productivity by 11%.
While not every workspace inside the office can be located next to a window, there are some steps you can take to improve air and light quality:
- Add skylights.
- Remove bulky furniture away from the windows to improve light flow.
- Integrate different types of lighting, such as ambient lights and task lights.
- Have a no-smoking policy.
- Install air filters.
- Add indoor plants.
- Open windows are possible.
Around 86% of office employees prefer to work alone. They claim that high noise levels can make it difficult to concentrate - leading to low productivity levels. They also feel pressured to behave and interact in a specific manner when working in close proximity with their peers.
However, the majority of offices today have open floor plans. And while they are more flexible and foster better communication, privacy concerns of open plans are inevitable. The health risk of grouping everyone in the same room also intensifies as germs and illnesses spread rapidly in such an environment.
On the other hand, isolated workplaces can reduce movement and make physical interaction between co-workers very minimal.
To rectify the issue, we suggest creating a range of layouts that facilitates every employee and allow them to complete their tasks without affecting productivity. Your office layout should include areas where the employees can shift between working in tandem and going solo - as per their needs.
It is also a good idea to invest in breakout spaces where colleagues can get together to relax, eat, and simply enjoy the company of others outside the hustle-bustle of the office.
Our bodies are built to move all day - not sit. Of course, the digital workspace doesn't allow much movement for the employees, leading to physical exhaustion and health issues. According to Hubspot, employers see a loss of approximately $153 billion every year due to workers' health problems and obesity.
To mitigate the problem, encourage your employees to lead an active lifestyle. People who get more exercise see an increase in the blood flow of their brains. This keeps them more alert and full of energy. It will also sharpen their concentration and decision-making abilities.
To instill fitness in your workforce, keep stairways open and accessible for them. Many businesses also equip themselves with bicycle stations and shower stalls to motivate people to walk, run, and cycle.
Another way to support your employees' health is to provide them with an ergonomic workstation. As per the report by Indiana University, investing in a proper workstation can put the body into a comfortable position. Working in such a position can prevent strains and stress on the body, leading to neck and back pain.
Have your office designed in such a way that employees can freely alternate between sitting and standing positions. You should also invest in comfortable and supportive office chairs along with standing desks and footrests to promote the employee's physical wellbeing.
What the eyes can see has a positive impact on a person's ability to work. It is also said that the correct interior can decrease stress, enhance creativity, and boost morale.
When designing your workspace, choose colors that reflect your brand. But at the same time, they should be stimulating to the mind and help boost productivity. For example:
- Red is a powerful color and gets the heart pumping for a strong physical response. It can be used in environments where physical exertion is necessary, such as personal trainers and trades.
- Blue stimulates the calming nerves and aids concentration. It is a popular color in offices, especially in areas where administrative tasks are taking place.
- Yellow is an energizing color and radiates a positive atmosphere. It helps the creative juice to flow and helps people when stuck in an idea rut.
- Green is a calming and restful color. It improves efficiency and focus. It also creates an overall sense of wellbeing. The color is ideal for areas such as the lobby and break rooms where relaxation is the primary goal.
It is also critical to add natural plants around the office space. According to a study, people respond better in the natural environment and report a 15% better sense of wellbeing. They are also found to be more creative at work.
People who have large companies and lack access to windows can also display pictures of natural elements to help workers connect with the outside world.
Above all, encourage the employees to take short walks and go outside in fresh air during intervals to refresh and get some exercise. You can also design outdoor spaces such as rooftop patio and staff garden to provide the staff with a change of scenery.
Conclusion: Office Design for Productivity
The outfitting of the office space is essential as it can affect various outcomes of your business, including employee satisfaction, health, and productivity. Keep these tips in your mind and design a strategic office space that will ultimately help spell' success for your business. Now you know more about office design for productivity.
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