Workplace Office Design

Five Tips For Creating Better Workspaces

22/05/2023

Insights

A well-designed and effectively-planned workspace enhances work quality, improves well-being amongst staff, and increases productivity. The rise in biophilic design has led to every other office having a wall of green plants and a breakout room for relaxing during stressful periods. If your workspace needs an overhaul, you might be tempted to search for bigger and better premises. But you don’t need to move out to improve your workplace.  Read our cost-effective ways to improve what you already have without the hassle of moving.

Before you begin

It’s hard to see how to improve a workspace when it’s busy and thriving. Find a time when employees aren’t there to view your premises objectively. Could a lick of paint and a rearrangement of the floor space be enough? If you need more floor area, do you have the capacity to expand? What is your budget for the work you’re considering and could that budget work harder for you?

Doing the work yourself is always an option but it is difficult to dedicate the time to plan, implement and evaluate a design and build project when you’re also running a business full-time.

There is also the issue of taking your current space for granted. Many find imagining those design changes to their own workplace as a problem and are often blind to existing issues.

In this instance, you should seek the assistance of independent property consultancy experts who can objectively assess your workspace and offer appropriate solutions to any problems that you have or which may arise during the project.

Our Top Tips

  1. Extend and Expand
  2. Improve Air Quality
  3. Better Lighting
  4. Temperature Adjustments
  5. Noise Levels

Extend and expand

If you find that you’re short on office space, you may have the option to expand. It might be more cost-effective to create more room – saving time on design and saving you moving premises altogether.

Our building surveyors can advise you on maximising floor space through additional building work, support you when applying for planning permission, and even recommend contractors to add to your project team.

Air quality

Unlike temperature or light, we cannot immediately see the quality of our air and so we don’t often make the same strides in improving this factor. The UK Green Building Council reports that “90% of our time is spent indoors where the air often contains 4-10 times the pollutants of outdoor air.” Optimising ventilation can directly improve the health of a building’s occupants and, in turn, supports businesses to achieve core business outcomes.

Keeping our workspaces well ventilated is an obvious way to improve our air quality, either through opening windows or installing serviced ventilation systems. However, we can decrease those indoor pollutants by choosing furniture, textiles and objects like candles and cleaning products that are low in volatile organic compounds (VOCs) such as formaldehyde, carbon dioxide and nitrogen dioxide.

Better lighting

Poor lighting in workspaces like offices, warehouses or factories can lead to eyestrain, headaches, fatigue, or even mental health problems amongst workers. The HSE has suggested that poorly lit offices can also be a symptom of Sick Building Syndrome.

Lighting is a key factor in office design but is just as important – if not more – in warehouses and factories. Ensuring your workers can operate in good lighting will improve staff morale and safety, as well as productivity levels. If natural light is hard to come by in your building, investing in high-performance, low-energy lighting will not only help your workforce thrive but will also save you money.

Temperature

Similar to lighting, the temperature of a room can reduce productivity when it goes below or above the optimum temperature of 21-23°C (70-73°F). When unresolved, unsuitable temperatures can lead to illness, absenteeism, and a decrease in morale.

To ensure the temperature of your building stays at the optimum level, you should make sure an efficient heating and ventilation system is in place. This way, you can support your employees’ time within your building without any extra resource being expended.

Noise levels

The European Union estimates that £34billion is lost each year due to excessive and unwanted noise in the workplace. This is partially due to inadequate acoustics in open-plan offices leading to a 66% drop in productivity. Not only do people struggle to work due to disruptive noise, but this can lead to increased stress levels and even absenteeism.

Acoustic ceilings, flooring and wall panels can be highly effective in reducing ambient noise levels and increasing efficiencies, not to mention increasing workers’ wellbeing.

These changes are relatively small in comparison to the rigmarole of moving to new premises, and so: before you move, think about how you can improve!

Our Building Project and Consultancy team can offer you creative and cost-effective solutions to enhance your property, whatever your budget. Get in touch today.

Get in touch with the Eddisons team

Please contact us for more details and information

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