In order to help employees achieve their best performance, we need to give them the best possible space to work in. Updating the design of the workplace is easy when you know how, so we thought we’d share 7 simple tips to help get you started:
1) Make it lighter
One of the easiest ways to modernise an office and help employees to feel happy and productive in it is to incorporate plenty of light into the design.
Natural light reduces eye strain and headaches and is a source of Vitamin D which is vital for healthy immune systems. Installing mirrors to reflect light and replacing solid walls or partitions with glass will instantly boost levels of daylight in your office.
2) Make it brighter
Once it’s lighter, make it brighter with some bold accents colour. Different colours have been shown to influence different behaviours; yellow is associated with feelings of well-being and productivity, blue is thought to aid clear thinking and collaboration while green is said to be calming. Choose your colours for different areas of the workplace, creating a different feel and vibe for each according to how you want people to feel.
Don’t feel that adding colour means a complete overhaul of your interior décor. Simple adding accent colours here and there through furniture, manifestation or artwork will make a big difference. London advertising agency Scorch London is a great example of how it can be done.
3) Quiet areas
Regardless of which department people work in or what level they are in the business, everyone needs a space where they can find some peace and quiet for tasks that require concentration or simply to take a break from their desk. Some open plan offices can be noisy, distr acting places to work in, so creating quiet areas for busy minds to retreat to is vital.
A great example of this is London based digital advertising agency, Essence. They recognise the importance of a varied work environment and factored quiet as well as social spaces into the design of their new Soho offices so that personnel can find a suitable area to focus, relax or collaborate on projects in. This project was recently recognised as Best Office Interior UK at the International Property Awards 2015, highlighting how well this has been implemented.
4) Sense of smell
Sensory elements such as smell can influence behaviour and the workplace is no exception. Studies show that plants in the workplace can help make employees more “physically, cognitively, and emotionally involved in their work” and it can also increase productivity by as much as 15%.
It is also suggested that different aromas can even help with specific tasks. For example, peppermint is associated with clear, alert thinking, floral scents increase concentration, and vanilla is thought to relieve stress and anxiety.
5) Brand identity
The branding of your organisation should feature as prominently in your office as it does on your website or your other customer-facing touch points.
Branding in the office helps remind employees of your company culture and can unite people who have very different roles in your organisation to get behind common causes. Branding also helps maintain focus on business aims and objectives so that they underpin everyone’s approach to getting the job done.
Something as simple as the temperature in a workspace can have a big impact on employee comfort and productivity and is always a topic of discussion in offices. The recommendations of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is that office temperatures are maintained at 13-16˚C, however each company and individual has their own preference.
7) Feel at home
Although each of the changes we’ve suggested will make the office a more pleasant space to work in, increasingly employers are introducing some home comforts to help make staff happy and naturally want to spend more time in the office.
Creating an agile working environment is a big step for some companies, but there are a number of small initiatives you can take now. Ideas include placing comfortable sofas in breakout rooms, installing a coffee machine and sandwich maker, or providing secure bike storage facilities to encourage people to be fit and healthy.
If you’d like to discuss some ideas on how to improve your office, then please contact the team here at Peldon Rose and we’d be happy to help.
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