Every great business owner or manager understands how important employee satisfaction is. In order to retain top talent and cut down on hiring and training expenses, the person in charge needs to ensure the workers are happy where they work. When it comes to motivating the workforce, a pleasant work environment is one of the fundamentals. Here are some essential qualities that can help you create a great workspace.
Implement an open floor plan
For starters, you want to consider incorporating an open layout that will allow employees to interact with each other more easily. While this approach might not work for every single line of work, studies have shown that having a floor plan like this can boost the workers’ mood and encourage collaboration. With that in mind, remove partitions and cubicles and rearrange the desks so that they facilitate communication. Plus, if you’re only now building your workspace, you will be able to save some money as you will not need multiple partitions.
Create some secluded areas
As beneficial as open spaces can be for teamwork, there are still activities that require a quiet space. Therefore, you want to create some secluded areas that will be used for brainstorming sessions, private meetings, and even recharging one’s batteries. For this, you can use typical offices but you can also look into creative solutions like office pods that provide solitary workers with a secluded zone that will allow them to concentrate without distractions.
Purchase ergonomic furniture
Once you’ve organized your space, you need to equip it with the right furniture. For example, every workstation should have an ergonomic chair that will properly support the employees’ neck, back, and limbs while they sit in front of a computer. Moreover, there is even ergonomic computer gear such as mouses and keyboards available, so consider providing workers with that as well. Additionally, as some employees prefer to stand while working, you need to add a few height-adjustable desks that will allow individuals to further customize their work area and choose when they will stand and when they will sit.
Invest in the right technology
Besides furniture, the technology you use also matters. For instance, outdated computer software can slow down the whole company. That is why you want to make sure all your programs are up to date. Furthermore, you also want to maintain and service your equipment so that there are no unexpected delays due to something breaking down. While it might be a bigger investment upfront, getting the latest tech will certainly boost the office’s productivity. Finally, bear in mind that fast internet is imperative in these times when everything is done online.
Focus on the common areas
While ensuring your workstations are motivational is important, you cannot overlook common areas either. So, you want to include a break room where workers can go to recharge their batteries, have a snack, and talk to their co-workers about something non-work-related. You can also include a mini-kitchen so that they can store or reheat their lunches and get a refreshing drink. Then, the bathroom is crucial as well. Make sure it is big enough that a few people can use it at the same time and consider floor-to-ceiling partitions to help people relax. What is more, various bathroom accessories like soap dispensers and toilet roll holders will also contribute to the convenience of the space.
Make the most of outdoor space
If you happen to have some outdoor space that you can use, you also want to make the most of it. For example, balconies, terraces, patios, and all sorts of outdoor areas can be used for breaks. Simply add some shade and a few seating options and tables. Your employees will surely appreciate the chance to get some sunlight and fresh air.
Think about the lighting
Another aspect of the workplace you cannot afford to overlook is lighting as it is crucial for employee productivity. While you should look for ways to maximize the natural light in the office, sometimes that is simply not an option due to location. Additionally, if you’re renting, you also might not be able to renovate and install bigger windows. In that case, you want to layer the lights in order to prevent headaches and eye strain. Aside from bright overhead lighting, you should also incorporate task lights so that every workstation is properly illuminated. Remember to use LEDs to save some money on electricity bills.
Minimize the noise
If you opt for an open layout, you might encounter some noise issues. As many people can be distracted by various sounds, you want to look for hacks that will help you minimize the noise. For starters, you can install noise-friendly flooring like vinyl flooring instead of wood and porcelain. Then, furniture pieces with soft upholstering and plants can also absorb sounds while you can also use acoustic panels on the walls and ceilings of private rooms to ensure peace and quiet. Moreover, make sure to provide employees with noise-cancelling headphones.
Opt for the right colour scheme
You should also keep in mind the fact that colour can have a big effect on your workforce’s psyche. While traditional offices are mostly neutral, you can take some bold steps in order to affect your employees’ behaviour. For example, blue and green hues are often recommended for enhancing one’s concentration and efficiency. You can also use yellow to boost creativity and optimism while red can make people active and intense, so consider using it only for accents.
Keep the office clean and tidy
Lastly, you want to keep your employees safe and comfortable. For that to happen, you need to create an office that is easy to organize and tidy up. Make sure everything has a place and that workers know where to return items once they’re done using them. Furthermore, unless you want to have a duty roster for cleaning where every employee takes part, you should hire professional cleaning services that will ensure the office is clean and neat every day.
A pleasant office environment is vital for retaining employees and ensuring their satisfaction. Keep these aspects in mind when designing your workplace.
About the Author
Jasmine Anderson is a Sydney based lifestyle blogger and a toddler mom. She loves to spend quality time with her family, go thrifting, and spend just a little bit too much time on the internet.