How your office is setup can have an impact on your staff’s comfort and productivity. For instance, it is hard and frustrating to work in a disorganized, extremely noisy office that is squeezed up, dull, and not properly ventilated.
In such an environment where your employees don’t feel comfortable, their productivity can be drastically affected. Without relying so much on research, your staff’s productivity will always have an impact on your business’ return on investment. Without highly productive employees, you’re more likely to have unattended files lying all around, unattended clients frequently complaining, pending businesses that need closing and plenty of other tasks pending completion. It can difficult to meet critical deadlines, which is bad for business.
Many studies have shown that employees tend to be happier working in calm, well-organized, facilitating, well-lit, less-cluttered, inspiring, and comfortable environment. Combining this with a system that includes flexible working hours, frequent breaks, fewer meetings, and more facilitation can work magic as far as employee comfort and productivity are concerned. Simple adjustments such as improving ventilation, investing more in tech, bringing certain essentials closer to them can boost their motivation twofold. And who said you can’t introduce some entertainment in the office too, provided you ensure it’s kept in check and professional?
Well, here are some tips on how to set a productive and comfortable officer for your employees.
1. Improve Ventilation
Ventilation is one of the most important factors that affect comfort in any indoor or enclosed environment. Without proper ventilation in offices, the indoor air can be contaminated with impurities. It can get damp, smell stuffy, and even attract the growth of airborne hazards such as mold spores and the like. It can also get extremely hot in the office during summer without proper ventilation. For these and more reasons, improving office ventilation is one of the best ways to increase or ensure high productivity and boost comfort. As an alternative to conventional air conditioning systems, air distribution systems are one of the best things you can introduce to improve office ventilation. Apart from improving comfort, these systems can also lower your energy costs considerably by up to 30% or more when professionally installed. They also improve indoor air quality, thus minimizing the risk of airborne infections that the employees may be subjected to.
2. Provide a Quiet Environment
A noisy office can feel stressful and chaotic. Noise pollution can also affect concentration and performance in an office. You can reduce noise in the office by upgrading office equipment such as printers, fax machines, and even electronics such as computers with less noisy ones. An under-floor air distribution system also tends to be quieter compared to other ventilation systems.
3. Keep it Organized and Manage Clutter
It has been proven that the mind tends to focus and concentrate more in a clear and organized environment. I’m not sure about you, but I can never get comfortable in a disorganized place with clutter all over. Ensuring that office clutter is properly managed and keeping everything organized can be resourceful in improving employee comfort and productivity.
4. Improve Office Comfort
Proper ventilation, lighting, and all the previously mentioned things will barely be enough without taking care of your employees’ immediate comfort needs. To improve office comfort, be sure to invest in quality, well-padded ergonomic chairs, and comfortable desks to minimize the chances of your employees complaining of back pains, neck sprains and such. Ensure the staff cubicles are spacious enough and well facilitated with the appropriate stationery and equipment. Having to walk almost yards away from the desk every time you print something can be counterproductive unless they rarely use the printer. Improve immediate comfort to boost productivity.
5. Improve Lighting
As earlier hinted, people tend to feel happier and more psyched-up in brighter environments. Keeping the office brighter by improving natural lighting or ensuring there’s adequate indoor lighting can be a great way to encourage your employees to be more active, motivated, comfortable, and productive. However, take care not to overdo indoor lighting as too bright can be harmful to the eyes. As a matter of fact, introducing quality desk lamps can motivate some of your employees to work night shifts if your business can accommodate that.
6. Encourage Short Breaks
As far as taking many breaks can seem counterproductive, it can actually increase employee productivity when done right. Especially during those busy days, taking a short break during working hours allows one to calm down and come back more focused. You can even introduce things such as coffee breaks, periodic refreshments and such.
7. Introduce Flexible Working and Entertainment
In most organizations, the regular work schedule is either 8 – 4 or 9 – 5. If the business demands allow it, however, it can be helpful to introduce working hours that are more flexible and combine that with shifts. For instance, you could introduce a 10 to 6 and 11 to 7 shift and allow your employees to choose the shifts they’d find more convenient for them. For the entertainment part, some really motivational background music in the office can be helpful. You can even choose to use this at specific times of the day, especially in the late afternoon when fatigue starts kicking in most office environments.
8. Keep the Office Hydrated
While this one may sound so obvious, not many offices understand the importance of remaining hydrated at work. You can set a more productive and comfortable office by introducing a couple of water dispensers at strategic points in the office. No one appreciates the idea of having to close shop just to get a glass of water from the office kitchen whenever they feel thirsty. You can even surprise them with quality personalized water bottles bearing the company logo!
9. Invest In Technology
A faster Wi-Fi network or introducing some touchscreen monitors could make a huge difference as far as productivity is concerned. Improving certain technological aspects in your office can be helpful in helping your employees to manage their time better. Make your office a place that makes anyone look forward to returning.
10. Emphasize On Goal Setting
It’s in human nature, that we tend to work harder when there’s something to achieve. Goal setting is one of the most motivating factors for productivity in an office environment, especially if there’s a reward for good performance. To help your employees achieve their goals, you could also introduce task scheduling approaches and tools such as Appointment Reminders.
11. Add Some Personality and Inspiration to Your Office
Artwork can be an amazing way to add some character, inspiration, and motivation. Research suggests that art can be a good tool for inspiring a higher production rate in the workplace. Used right, art also tends to add a professional touch and create a welcoming effect in an office. You can also use art to make your employees feel more appreciated and important to the organization. For instance, offering personalized coffee mugs, pens, and notepad organizers for performing employees can be a nice way to boost employee morale and encourage productivity in the office.
The above are just a few of many ways you can boost your employees’ productivity and comfort in the office. You can also consider cutting back on meetings and getting more involved in the welfare of your employees and become a role model. Additionally, it is also important to provide consistent feedback to your employees and take the initiative to ensure you acknowledge good performance. Most importantly, don’t underestimate the power of proper ventilation. With reference to the first point above; be sure to consider the benefits of air distribution systems mentioned and prioritize on it.