The business office location and the way it is arranged is a very important factor in work productivity, much more important than most people would admit. A simple example of this is if someone is expected to work in a tiny, cramped workspace with no desk and no storage. It is obvious that there would be many opportunities for clutter and confusion in such a setting.
Similarly, a business work environment can make employees either more or less productive.
The appearance of an office can make them stressed or relaxed, creative or lackadaisical, activated or ambivalent. Pay closer attention to the way you arrange your business space and the office furniture that you use. It can ultimately affect your bottom line.
Here are some fresh ideas for spurring on greater productivity among your employees.
High-Stress Work Activities
Some jobs are by their very nature filled with stress. Employees are given preparation for this outcome in interviews and on-the-job training, but an office setting can also be chosen that will help to reduce stress as much as possible. If stress is reduced, productivity will be higher and stress-related illnesses will be lower.
Choose office furniture in soft tones. Allow employees to have their own private office space with dividers, even if they are all located in the same room. This will cut down on noise and confusing foot traffic.
Nature scenes are very calming. Include some of nature within the office setting such as a fountain, live plants, or an indoor fish pond or aquarium.
Make sure that plenty of light comes into the office setting. If natural light is not easily available, increase the amount of indoor lighting, which will make working easier and more enjoyable.
For very high-stress occupations, consider dedicating an activity room to the setting. Outfit the activity room with exercise equipment and chairs for relaxation that employees can use on their downtime. Have a mobile massage unit come in regularly, so that employees can relax muscles of the head and neck.
Sedate Office Activities
On the other hand, some employee tasks are structured to be repetitive, sedate, or even boring by nature. An example of this would be an order clerk who takes hundreds of the same calls a day and inputs them into computer. The goal in this setting is to increase liveliness, adding more interest for employees so that they can stay focused on their work.
In this setting, it may not increase work productivity to separate employees into their own workspaces. Instead, allow them to work in a common room with other employees nearby.
Choose bright colors for this type of office setting instead of drab office furniture. With very mundane activities, allow more frequent breaks for employees, to reduce the chance of errors.
For those who are continuously on computer throughout the day, consider furnishing the office space with ergonomic office furniture, which puts the body in the correct posture in relation to the computer and reduces back and arm strain.
Highly Creative Work Activities
The third group of employees to consider is the group of creatives. These could be artists, designers, writers, architects, or any other employees who depend upon high levels of creativity for their work. Although all workers are to some extent creative in what they do, those who originate creative works should be in a setting that encourages original, even lofty, thinking.
Wide open window spaces and the use of light blue in decorating have been proven to be useful in encouraging creative thought. Since creatives work most effectively in private spaces, a separate work module or even a private room for working is definitely a good idea.
You may also want to consider allowing your creative workers to take their work outside the office setting, since in many cases creative processes are not really dependent on a physical office setting. If you decide to provide mobile equipment to them to use outside of the building, be sure that doing so will not compromise office security.
Increasing work productivity by changing your work environment doesn’t have to be costly or difficult. Whether you have a large or small office, choose décor and furniture that complements the kind of work employees will be doing in your office.
About Adam Robertson:
Adam Robertson is a professional in the office furnishings industry. He works for Allard Office Furniture, an office furniture company which has 18 years of shared experience in office desks, chairs, supplies and accessories.