- September 25, 2014
- Posted by: Gareth Whalley
- Category: Latest News & Blog
- Healthier offices are happier places to work
- Design is critical to employees’ wellbeing
- Productivity soars in well-designed work settings
- Air quality and daylighting are key factors
Did you know the design of your office has a direct impact on your health? According to the World Green Building Council, there is ‘overwhelming evidence’ which links good office design to issues relating to health, productivity and wellbeing at work.
In their report, Health, Wellbeing and Productivity in Offices: The Next Chapter for Green Building they find a number of key factors, including air quality and lighting, has a direct effect on health, satisfaction and job performance.
Some of their key findings are summarised below
How office design affects worker wellbeing
- Daylighting/artificial lighting: Without adequate lighting office workers become dissatisfied. Studies show that people who sit nearer windows and benefit from natural daylight are more productive. Theories support the idea that workers with natural views of the outside world experience significant productivity gains.
- Thermal comfort: Research indicates thermal comfort is strongly linked with worker satisfaction. Studies suggest a slight control over thermal comfort show genuine improvements in productivity, it’s something to seriously consider during building design.
- Biophilia: The term ‘Biophilia’ refers to a love of living systems. It’s the way we, as humans, are attracted to everything that is alive and vital and this concept was first introduced by Erich Fromm, a German social psychologist. Basically, we have a bond with nature and good office design should reflect this fact to improve productivity within the work setting.
- Indoor air quality: Where possible natural ventilation and passive fresh air systems should be utilised. Obviously, this isn’t always possible, high outside temperatures and warm interior settings make air conditioning inevitable in a high percentage of office environments.
It’s a complicated mix but strike the right balance with building design and this could maximise productivity within a company.