Office design, employee wellbeing and therefore satisfaction and productivity has become an important factor for employers. When possible, employers should reflect on their current office environments for their staff and focus on the key features they should be considering. Workplaces with a modern approach to a work-life balance are more important than ever, in tune with the modern-day attitude to workplace wellbeing.
This article will look at office design, how to design the perfect workspace and the features that should be considered.
What is office design?
Office design needs to consider many factors, including the structural layout of the building, the types of workspaces that are needed within the office, how much natural light is available, what facilities are required, how staff will interact with each other… the list goes on.
What makes ‘good’ office design, is how all these elements work together to create a workplace that impacts favourably on staff well-being and productivity, as well as creating a positive impression for visitors and customers alike.
How to design the perfect workspace
When designing a workspace, the key is to ensure it works for everyone, which can be a challenge as people, by nature, like working in different ways. Some may thrive in a busy, noisy environment, while others may work best in a peaceful setting and some may like both, depending on what work they are doing or the mood they are in.
A ‘perfect’ workspace is probably an impossible goal, but creating a place where colleagues enjoy working and are productive in, is a great place to start!
As people are at the heart of offices, the main focus should be on the types of spaces that they thrive in and create areas that harness this. As a lot of people will have become used to working from home, we may see the type of areas they feel comfortable working in change over the next year or so, as they start frequenting office space again.
Features of good office design
These areas can offer a relaxed atmosphere, but have functionality build in, with wipe boards, interchangeable desking and seating, projectors/screens etc.
These areas act more as break-out areas, with a mix of sociable seating and more private areas, where people can ‘get away’ from work but also catch up with colleagues, if they want to. The focus here is on providing different options for individuals.
Let’s face it, sometimes you just need to sit on your own and concentrate. With many offices opting for open plan layouts, this is a type of space that is often lacking in many offices but is hugely beneficial. Giving staff options of where to carry out their work, is a good way of boosting morale, through autonomy.
A relatively new addition to workspaces is ‘zoom rooms’ which are essentially small rooms with a chair and the technology to either make phone or video calls. These are becoming increasingly popular, as more business is done virtually and through lockdown, many people have become accustomed to working in this way. We anticipate that this trend continues, as employers increasingly realise that travelling long distances for meetings is not always needed.
As well as creating a variety of types of workspaces within one office facility, there are aesthetic features that help to make those areas really work for people.
Incorporating as much natural light into an area as possible and positioning workstations evenly throughout the area to benefit from this, is a good place to start. A 2018 Harvard Business Review reports a study concluding that workers in daylight office environments reported a 51% drop in the incidence of eyestrain, a 63% drop in the incidence of headaches and a 56% reduction in drowsiness. These benefits would certainly improve staff well-being and productivity.
If possible, if exposure to natural light can be coupled with access to outside space, you are onto a winner! It does not need to be a massive space, but a small area with some seating and access to Wi-Fi, can serve as a great place for staff to recharge their batteries.
Who are Meridian Interiors?
Meridian Interiors is an office design company that gives your employees everything they need to succeed, and more. We use our knowledge in office design to create a workspace for collaboration, whilst promoting health and wellbeing for all.
From Workplace Consultancy to our detailed site surveys, the data gathered helps us to plan your environment accurately. This allows us to review future proofing of the space, whilst identifying building constraints and checking on regulator and environmental compliances.
Please get in touch today for our assistance in encompassing up and coming trends, while also producing functional and practical office layout ideas. Contact us online, call ll 0333 3448 772 or email [email protected].