Equipping the team with the latest tools, providing better management, offering salary increase, and more—there are plenty of ways to motivate employees and increase their productivity in work. However, with employees having to spend an average of eight or more hours in the office for five to six days a week, it is the environment—especially the office design—that has most direct effect on their everyday morale, mood, and performance.
With that in mind, it is crucial that companies understand what kind of office design and professional spaces can positively affect their employees. Companies should learn how to create it, with the help of a trusted construction company in the Philippines, in order to produce the desired result.
For companies that are dressing up their new offices or redesigning their spaces for an improved environment, here are a few tips on office design that can help increase employee productivity.
Install community boards
A good start in increasing employee productivity is to involve everyone in with what is happening in the company, and a simple way to do that is to install community pin-up boards, one for each departments and one for the whole company, to post announcements or broadcast the things going on in the office.
Additionally, it can also be a great key or central item or location in the office where employees can chat. Get creative with the design of the community boards and base the entire office design from them.
Ensure good air circulation, temperature, and lighting
A dark, stuffy, and extremely hot or cold office can easily distract employees from their work which is why having good air circulation, right temperature, and proper lighting are the basic foundations of a great office design for productivity.
Starting off, installing air filters and air purifiers can increase the quality of the air circulating inside the office which is not only advantageous for the employees’ productivity, but also for their health. Putting plants in strategic positions is also a great way to provide good air circulation within the office.
Meanwhile, the optimal office temperature appears to be 25° Celsius as Cornell University in one their studies shows that workers are able to type in the keyboard 100% of the time with only 10% error rate at 25° Celsius (77° Fahrenheit). On the other hand, their keying rate went down to 54% of the time with an increased 25% error rate when the temperature dropped to 20° Celsius (68° Fahrenheit.) So, try to maintain the office temperature at 25 degrees!
Lastly, having enough natural lighting do not only help incite productivity among employees, but it can also help them avoid having a worsening eyesight, headaches, and fatigue. In fact, a study from the Northwestern Medicine and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign shows that employees with windows in the workplace received 173% more white light exposure during work hours and slept an average of 46 minutes more per night than employees who did not have the natural light exposure in the workplace. It is best to put the employee work stations near windows or consider building more windows in the office.
Be creative with the meeting room’s design
Employees spend an awful lot of time in meetings. The Muse in their The Ugly Truth about Meetings infographic shows that middle managers spend about 35% of their time in meetings, while for those in the upper management, it can reach up to 50%. What makes it worse is that 67% of these meetings are considered unproductive. And so, it is only right to improve the office design in these areas.
Do not be afraid to stray away from the boring and common meeting room designs, and get creative. If you have enough space, try putting couches and a refreshments bar in one corner of the room for a more relaxed atmosphere. You may also simply hang artworks on the walls to inspire creativity if you only have a small space.
You should try to create a distinction between the design of the meeting rooms and work stations as well. Just be careful not to make the meeting room look too relaxed, or the employees might doze off during meetings!
Use ergonomic office furniture
Neck and back pains are common among office employees who spend most of their time at the office sitting in front of their computers. Although it may seem harmless at first, repetitive muscle strain could result to serious injuries if ignored. This is why office design for productivity should include having good quality office furniture, especially chairs.
Employees will not have to suffer from neck and back pains anymore with ergonomic chairs which will help them conserve energy, and increase their focus and productivity at work. They will also find it convenient to be able to adjust their chairs to match the height of their desks.
Provide spaces to unwind
Along with the fact that most employees spend most of their eight hours in the office sitting in their work station in front of their computers, employees working in inflexible working spaces are more likely to encounter a mind block than employees with spacious working environment. Encourage your employees to move around by providing spaces to unwind and take a break from time to time, whether within their immediate working spaces or in a separate lounge next door.
Get a help from a fit out contractor in the Philippines, and furnish the break areas with multipurpose chairs and tables. It is also a good idea to have a mini-library in there so that employees can get new ideas from reading. These break areas can also be used for informal meetings if employees need quick brainstorming sessions or work update reports while having a break.
These are just a few tips office managers or designers may follow in order to create work spaces that will help employee productivity increase. Of course, you may be able to do more improvements in your office design if you know the concerns and needs of your employees, so communicate with them and start creating better office spaces.