According to a recent report, only 55% of workers say that the design of their workplace enables them to work productively. And just 49% say their office is a place they feel proud to share with visitors. Clearly, companies could be doing a better job when it comes to designing their workspace. A well-designed office can boost not only worker morale, but also your bottom line. Here are three examples of how your office design affects your more tangible results.
Improved employee well-being and engagement
Studies suggest that worker well-being is strongly correlated with job performance. According to Steelcase, “engaged employees are more productive, have lower turnover rates, lower absenteeism and drive higher profits.” Think about how your office design does – or doesn’t – encourage worker well-being and engagement. Steelcase offers some aspects you might consider. Are employees able to move around throughout the day? Does your environment promote relaxation and provide a calm atmosphere? Have you built in spaces where workers can concentrate, work in teams, and socialize?
A balance of collaboration and focus
One of the biggest findings in Gensler’s 2013 U.S. Workplace Survey is that “effective workplaces balance focus and collaboration.” This balance improves employee performance and makes for a more creative, more innovative workplace. So if your office is primarily made up of open space, consider adding more private areas where employees can concentrate in a quiet and uninterrupted environment. Conversely, if your workplace has a lot of individual offices, consider creating more community spaces where workers can collaborate. This article from the Harvard Business Review sets out more details about designing spaces for both collaboration and solitude. (Check out the section titled “Strategic Space Planning” for details of the “distributed” and “zone” models.)
More flexibility and autonomy
The Gensler study also indicates that “employers who provide a spectrum of choices for when and where to work are seen as more innovative and have higher-performing employees.” And another study reports that 72% of global businesses say flexible working practices have increased productivity. To provide choice and autonomy for your employees, the Gensler study suggests providing spaces to support all work modes, as well as access to helpful tools and technology. You can think about flexibility beyond the physical office, too, as it applies to the more virtual “workspace” that’s on the rise. The design elements in your office shouldn’t be an afterthought. They should be things you consciously select for their positive effects on your business. Learn how The iPad Receptionist has helped our customers improve both their office design — and office productivity.
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