Many of you have been stuck in your desks for hours figuring out the best office space for your team, its layout, and design. You’ve even made sketches (although your peers couldn’t understand your elaborated artwork), and suffered from several heart attacks once you added all of the elements needed for that specific workplace. In fact, some of you began taking out “useless” chairs, “way too big” desks and “inappropriate” break rooms. At the end of the day your company expected you to save some extra money, isn’t that right? What you probably missed out is that employees’ productivity is highly correlated to office space.
As a matter of fact, those extra dollars “saved” in ergonomic furniture, natural light, and generous spaces may turn in high expenses due to unhappy employees. As a study revealed, unmotivated employees cost the U.S economy $450 to $550 billion a year in lost productivity. That’s without mentioning that unsatisfied workers take more sick days a year, and all of the money invested in replacing stressed workers.
Furthermore, The American Society of Interior Designers found that physical workplace design is one of the top three factors that affect an employee’s performance and job satisfaction. Additionally, a study by the Journal of Public Affairs, Administration and Management discovered that:
-Lighting is the primary factor that affects an employee’s productivity.
-Temperature has a greater effect on female employees than on male employees.
-Male employees are highly affected by office furniture.
-Both natural and artificial light are necessary to maximize employee productivity.
-Spatial arrangement of office furniture is important to productivity.
Additionally, data from a Steelcase commissioned study conducted by the global research firm IPSOS of 10,500 workers in 14 countries found out that employees who are highly satisfied with the places they work are also the most engaged.
“Innovative companies are 5X more likely to have workplaces that prioritize both individual and group workspace”. Gensler, U.S Workplace Survey.
But what does it take to provide an attractive work environment?
Consider design, noise level and the different ways people and resources can access the space. Remember no matter how open the workplace is, the most important requisite of successful focus is the place. In other words, invest in the individual.
Other key design factors to have in mind are meeting spaces, access to outdoor areas and wifi access. As the Gallup State of the American Workplace report says, “employees are most engaged when given choice and control over where and how they work”.
We recall then, the four key characteristics that must embrace every area in a workplace: Concentration, Collaboration, Innovation, and Creativity.
Are you ready for increasing your employees’ engagement and productivity with better-designed spaces?
Author’s Bio: Camila Restrepo is a passionate story builder and journalist. As OfficeList´s Communications Manager, she’s building an online community for entrepreneurs.