Many businesses overlook office design, despite it being an integral factor in the success of your business. The lay-out of your office and its design features all have an impact on how your employees communicate with each other, their ability to perform certain functions and tasks and their general well-being and happiness. By taking some time to think about your office lay-out, you can increase the happiness and overall productivity of your employees. Follow these five tips for turning your office into a productive and happy working environment.
Consult your employees
Your employees are better placed than anyone else to tell you what is needed in the office. These are the people who spend the most time in the office and will be able to tell if theoretical improvements will actually work. Your employees need to be able to effectively communicate and move around the office with ease. They need to be able to easily concentrate and focus on their tasks, and will have a very good idea on the ways the office could help them do this.
Make full use of light and space
Your employees spend the vast amount of their time indoors, many of them away from windows. Natural light can vastly improve the mood and well-being, so it’s important to let as much natural light into the office as possible. This means you should ensure it’s not blocked by unnecessary blinds, plants or furniture. You may wish to place the majority of your desks by the windows, rather than in the middle of the room, so your employees can get a good amount of natural light. Interior walls and cubicles block light and create a cramped feel, so are best avoided.
Storage without sacrificing space
Clutter and mess will easily bring any office environment to a standstill. Dedicate areas for different uses, such as kitchen areas to prevent people eating at their desks. Use the unused areas of your office for storing paperwork and stationery. If you have the space, lockers are a great place for your employees to keep their belongings in a neat and tidy way.
Ensure you provide break out spaces
Communal areas that provide different environments for different functions are essential in any office, such as eating areas. Separate them from the rest of the office through the use of furniture, soft furnishings or carpets.
Invest in your furnishings and decor
Minimising the cost of any expenses seems like common sense, but remember that you will need office furniture that stands the test of time, so you should invest in high quality products. Finding cheap options may save you money in the short term, but you will find that you have more problems with them and they’ll have to be replaced more frequently, bringing unexpected costs. Items such as cheap office chairs can be uncomfortable, leading to unmotivated and unhappy employees. Cheap seating could also pose a health risk and lower morale.