When we think about employee health, the office design isn’t the first thing to come in mind. Instead, we consider sick days, nutrition, health insurance plans, etc.
While healthy food options in your company’s vending machines can definitely improve your employees’ health, you should also consider your office design and its impact on employee satisfaction. Small office design tweaks can help create a better work environment, improving employee morale and generating more productivity. Here are 5 office design tips to promote well-being in the workplace.
1) Bring a “little home” into work
Encourage employees to personalize their workspace and decorate their desks. Have employees bring in pictures of their family members or friends, cat calendars, or personal trinkets. They’ll look forward to coming into work when they’re not sitting at a barren desk or in an empty cube. These personal touches will help put employees into a positive mindset. Whenever they feel overwhelmed or exhausted, they can look to their family pictures for a mental uplift.
2) Venture into the great outdoors
There’s nothing worse than being trapped indoors all day on a beautiful summer’s day. If possible, give employees the option to take their breaks outdoors by incorporating an outdoor space. Whether this space is a patio, deck, or even just a bench or picnic table, employees will appreciate the change of scenery. Even stepping away from their desk for a short period of time can do wonders. Employees can eat their lunch outside or just sit out there on a sunny day. They’ll get their daily dose of vitamin D and rejuvenate before their afternoon work session!
3) Get employees moving
Sitting in the same place all day can grow tiresome and take a physical toll. Research has shown that sedentary behavior can increase the risk of developing many chronic conditions, including cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.
If your employees only stretch their legs during their lunch breaks or trips to the bathroom, it’s time for you to take action and encourage more activity. You could invest in height adjustable desks, start a work stretching program or try “walking meetings” where employees discuss business issues while walking. Or, you could try placing water fountains, vending machines or photocopiers across the office, so employees have to walk around to quench their thirst or grab a snack.
4) Choose the right office layout
An open office plan won’t work for every company. Similarly, not all employees will thrive in a traditional work environment dominated by cubicles. If you’re ready to change up your office design, consider what’s best for your company. Would your employees benefit more from an open and collaborative work environment? Or would they prefer a hybrid office space, which incorporates a range of spaces for employees with different work styles?
If you can’t decide, why not ask your employees? Include your employees in the office design by asking what they would change about the current office or if their work style is more independent or collaborative. Use their feedback to decide on the ideal layout for your office. You can’t please everyone, but you can significantly improve employee happiness by taking their needs and wants into consideration.
Ready to redesign your office space? Not sure where to start? Office Basics Business Interiors can help you bring your creative vision to life and build a better work environment for your employees. We can guide you through the entire process, from consultation and brainstorming to design and installation. To learn how we can help you optimize your existing space, or ease the transition to a new office, contact us today.