The office is the heart of your business. It’s where you work, collaborate, and innovate. But how do you make sure it’s a space that will help your employees perform at their best?
Office space design is a powerful tool for boosting both employee morale and performance. It’s important to have an environment that not only reflects your company’s culture, but also innately inspires creativity and supports your staff to maintain productivity. A well-designed space will not only make employees happier throughout their work week, but will also ensure that their week is more productive to boot.
Here are some suggestions on how you can design your office to better prioritise productivity and purpose.
Tailor Your Office Space Design To Individuals
It is important to understand that there is no magic formula for success, as every workplace is different and, more importantly, so is every worker in that workplace. It’s important to keep in mind that your staff is made up of people with different personalities, needs, and challenges that need to be identified and addressed. Some workers will be more productive in a quiet, isolated environment where they can get on with their independent workload. Others thrive in modern, collaborative settings. You want to provide a combination of these spaces to ensure that your workplace is consistently inclusive and welcoming to your diverse workforce.
Understand The Difference Between Soft And Hard Rooms
That being said, there are some rooms that you want to be welcoming and comfortable, and some that are best kept more formal. Spaces where your workers may potentially entertain clients, should be relaxing, inviting, and full of features that can keep any potential guests engaged as well as comfortable.
Contrary to this, if there are spaces where a specific and singular task is a top priority, an informal set-up will not complement this purpose. A filing space, for example, should have no chairs or other amenities and very little unused space, to ensure that workers don’t feel compelled to stand around and socialise in this highly functional space.
Encourage Workers To Move To Different Spaces
Google and Facebook are amongst a handful of companies that have been redefining our perception of the ‘modern workplace’. In Google’s HQ, workers are encouraged to roam between colourful, bold collaborative spaces, with this intricate environment essentially encouraging staff to leave their traditional desk setup to make collaboration a more effortless and naturalistic endeavour.
There is no reason why you can’t apply these same design principles to your own work environment. It can become tedious staring at a computer at the same desk for eight hours a day, so encouraging workers to collaborate and carry out their duties in different areas, can help keep their workday feeling fresh. This can also pave the way for higher rates of job satisfaction across your workplace.
Incorporate Plants and Natural Lighting
Why do all of the most beautiful office environments tend to also be amongst some of the easiest spaces to work in? The power of plants and natural light have been proven to double cognitive function, improve and regulate the emotional wellbeing of your workers, and boost the overall productivity of workplaces across virtually all industries. Offices that utilise the power of these natural elements tend to also be the most conducive for maintaining productivity throughout the workday.
Simply put, your office environments will thrive so long as they have plenty of plants and natural light streaming in.
Working From Home? You Can Boost Your Productivity Too
Remote workforces and working from home were already starting to become popular in 2019. In the wake of the COVID-19 global pandemic, however, businesses have been forced to fast-track any WFH plans they had to continue operations during mandatory lockdowns and other restrictions as they emerge.
Alongside this, according to one of the largest ever studies into the global workforce, workers seem to be in no rush to return to full time office hours. PwC’s ‘Hopes and fears 2021’ study showed that 90 per cent of Australians want to keep working from home to some capacity,and three quarters of all Aussies believe the ideal work schedule will utilise the hybrid WFH model, incorporating at least one day at home every week.
That means your home office needs to keep you motivated as well, and that a home workspace that prioritises posture, comfort, vision, and movement are all key to ensuring your stay productive across your work week.
You should have a dedicated work space (meaning not a seat at the kitchen table or in the living room) that has access to a window to ensure high availability of natural light. Simple, sleek desks are recommended to minimise clutter, and it is highly advised that you invest in a sturdy yet comfortable chair that is designed with maintaining good posture in mind.
Whether you’re working at the office or working from home, it’s clear to see that curating and cultivating a perfect work environment is integral to not just boosting your productivity, but also for ensuring your own emotional health and wellbeing during the work week.