Say goodbye to the crazy office design trends such as ping-pong tables in breakrooms and say hello to a more natural and versatile workspace. Workplace design styles are always changing – for example, the open-concept offices were all the rage a few years ago but are leaving employees stressed due to noise level and lack of private places to work independently. In today’s competitive world, office design can help attract and retain top talent for your company.
Recent studies show that employees favor natural light to on-site cafeterias, fitness centers, and even on-site childcare. The best workspaces combine the traditional idea of personal cubicles and the newer concepts of collaboration spaces and pleasing aesthetics. Nature and natural elements have a positive effect on humans and improve wellbeing and energy levels. Additionally, nature can help improve blood flow, heart rate, and stress levels in the office.
With technology usage at an all-time high, there is an increased desire for visual breaks at work. Too much screen time and artificial light can cause eyestrain, headaches, and fatigue. Natural light can reduce all three of those. Simply allowing more natural light to flood into your office can have a large impact on employees. Some European Union countries require employees to be within a certain distance of a window as part of the national building code because it can be so beneficial!
A Touch of Green
Bringing plants into your workspace is another way to improve aesthetics and employees’ wellbeing. Plants reduce dust and bacteria which is extremely beneficial to those who suffer from allergies or asthma and can decrease sick days. CO2 levels can be reduced by 20% if there is one plant for every three people in the office. Ultimately, incorporating plants, nature, and natural light into office design can have a critical impact on employee retention rates and absences. You don’t have to spend thousands or even hundreds on redesigning your office to create a more natural and pleasing aesthetic. Plants come in a large variety of colors and prices so there is something available for everyone’s budget and taste.
Versatility is another important factor to consider when designing your office. Creating a flexible workplace can maximize space and keep the office interesting as well as add to the overall aesthetic. The most effective offices are user-friendly and not over-done. For example, an office may have a height-adjustable table for employees to collaborate at, a sit-stand desk for their independent work, a whiteboard where they can visualize their thoughts, and a couch or chair for them to enjoy a break or relax for a moment. To combine the idea of private cubicles and an open workspace, consider glass doors on offices with sheer curtains. Sheer curtains are multifunctional and allow privacy when desired-they absorb sound yet still let natural light in. These “transparent” offices help break down hierarchies and promote an inviting corporate culture.
Changing the aesthetic at the office doesn’t have to require an interior designer and a thousand dollar budget – opening the window blinds and buying a few plants can do the trick! Natural elements in your workspace have numerous positive benefits for employees as well as the design of the office. Creating a flexible office can also improve the aesthetic while maximizing space. Office design and employees’ wants should not be overlooked if a productive, cohesive, and pleasant office is what you desire.