Making your offices work for you
For a number of reasons, including a growing emphasis on wellness in the workplace and low productivity, standards of office spaces have come a long way in recent years. Rows of dark and dingy offices with poor air quality are making way for bright modern sustainable workspaces that inspire and are more user centered. Recent studies conclude that a person’s surroundings can have a profound effect on the way they work and on mental health at work. Productivity, engagement and even emotional well being can all be at risk of diminishing if a person is unhappy at work, and your surrounding environment has a big part to play in workplace satisfaction.
Good modern office design is human centred
A typical contemporary office strives to focus entirely on the needs of the staff being user centric. Of course business success is a top priority, however, this is not going to be feasible unless employees are motivated and inspired to work. It’s extremely important to be stimulated by your surroundings, particularly if your job requires you to be innovative and creative. Studies have shown that there are certain cues in our physical environment that inspire creative thinking and with this in mind, a neglected or poorly maintained office space is bound to stunt our imaginations. Modern offices strive to counteract the ingrained stereotype of a bland and lifeless office by implementing some of the following features:
Studies have shown that plants, natural materials, nature images & materials inspired by nature in a work environment can significantly reduce stress levels. The vibrant colours are also likely to inspire creative thinking. In a space where pretty much everything is man-made, it’s important to introduce nature wherever possible and plants are a great way to do this.
Exposure to natural light
A well-lit office space is extremely important and natural light is a necessity. A decent amount of exposure to natural light can lift our mood, help us focus and can even help us sleep better at night.
Open plan agile spaces
An open plan layout with dedicated acoustic & presentation zones is a popular office trend as it paves the way for collaborative working. Much of our job satisfaction boils down to the relationships we create at work, and an open layout with dedicated collaboration spaces is likely to boost social relationships and interaction within the office.
Relaxation communal spaces
Whilst offices used to be dedicated entirely work, it’s now customary to have communal areas for employees to relax and recharge their batteries. Many offices have sofas and comfortable chairs for employees to take breaks, and it’s also becoming increasingly popular to have a game such as ping pong or table football on offer. Video games, board games and large puzzles are also popular additions to help unwind on a short break.
Although the way in which a modern office is designed is dependent on many different factors, there’s no denying there’s been a shift in recent years. It’s become abundantly clear that how a business performs is directly related to how an employee interacts with their workplace. Employers have made a concentrated effort to blur the lines between work and home so that staff members are driven to come to work in the morning. By striking the perfect balance between fun and hard work, a modern office inspires engagement, creativity and above all, success.