Your commercial office space isn’t just a location for you and your employees to come to work. It has the potential to be an environment that inspires ideas, sparks creativity and fosters collaboration. By optimising your commercial space, you can create a workplace set up that helps to increase employee productivity.
The right office layout, collaborative shared spaces and a focus on health and wellness can have the power to give your business a boost.
Optimising your commercial space can also mean streamlining your workflows with the right technology and maximising your space to boost productivity.
Read on to find out how to increase employee productivity by optimising your commercial space.
How To Maximise Productivity At Work
1. Creatively Designing Your Workspace
Office design and layout can have a marked impact on employee productivity and culture, from the desk configuration to the lighting and temperature.
While cubicles were once popular to provide an element of privacy and reduced visual distractions, many major corporations moved to more open plan office layouts in a bid to boost collaboration.
Hot desking, or not having assigned seating, has also become more common in recent years, particularly as many companies moved to a hybrid-work model.
Each layout has its benefits and limitations when it comes to controlling noise, visual amenity, air quality and personal space.
One study into the best workspace design found a so-called ‘zoned open plan’ model achieved the best results for employee satisfaction.
It used an open plan design but added soundproof doors between working and collaboration spaces, limited the number of people in a room and included ‘phone booth-style’ units with soundproof doors in each room.
The designers also installed hanging planter boxes above each set of desks. As well as greenery, other potential office productivity enhancers include incorporating natural lighting, larger breakout spaces and social spaces.
2. Encouraging Collaboration At Work
The right workplace set up can boost productivity through enhanced collaboration between employees.
Many companies now understand the benefits of creating a variety of shared zones - both working and social spaces - to increase employee connection and, ultimately, productivity.
Face-to-face interactions are now known to be the most important activity in an office and chance encounters between employees can be a powerful tool to improve performance.
Whether it’s creating relaxed breakout rooms, open-plan kitchen areas or Google-style chillout spaces with a ping pong table, thoughtful office design can encourage the right kind of employee engagement.
When planning a creative breakout space, think about its purpose - is it for break times, fun times or quiet spaces for contemplation?
That will help inform the layout and decor.
Many offices experiment with creative colours or textures, feature comfy couches or pod seats, natural elements and communal tables.
Overall, you want the breakout space to be somewhere that employees want to go as this will increase chance encounters across the office and boost productivity.
3. Creating a Healthy Work Environment
Creating a healthy work environment through smart design and fitout choices can also help to boost employee productivity.
There is a growing awareness of the importance of employee wellbeing and an understanding that workplaces have an important role to play in nurturing good health.
There are a number of ways that employers can create a healthier work environment, starting with adding some greenery and natural light.
A 2018 study found that employees in offices with “optimised natural light” reported an 84 per cent drop in symptoms including eyestrain, headaches and blurred vision as well as less drowsiness.
It also found workers who sat next to a window with natural light were more productive.
The negative health impacts of prolonged sitting are also well known, which is why a number of organisations include the option for standing desks or standing meeting tables and facilities. Standing desks allow the body to naturally engage employees core abdomen and glutes which is essence is a more natural position.
Other tips to boost office wellness include adding filtered water and healthy snacks to the kitchen and taking steps to encourage riding or walking to work.
4. Streamlining Your Workflow
Chances are anyone who has worked in an office environment understands the productivity-zapping impact of lacklustre technology.
From a prickly printer to unreliable internet, technology is a vital part of any workplace set up.
Streamlining your workflow is important to ensure your employees can stay focussed on the task at hand and optimise productivity.
Ensuring your internet is high-speed and reliable is important and it’s also worth considering automated systems that can help employees and cloud storage to keep records safe and easy to access.
A global Pricewaterhouse Coopers survey found that about 68 per cent of staff were satisfied with the technology experience at their company.
Many also agreed they were happy for certain tasks to be digitised if it freed them to do more important and engaging work.
With many workplaces now also permitting hybrid work, ensuring you have reliable and professional set ups for Zoom meetings is critical.
Getting the right tech on the job can help create productive workspaces and increase employee productivity.
5. Maximising Your Space
There are so many fantastic options to include in your workplace set up that you won’t always have room to include (like that tech-industry-style slide down into the lunch room).
Considering how best to maximise existing space is an important part of the design process and can also help increase employee productivity.
Ensuring you build in clever space for storage, like personalised storage at each desk, can reduce the amount of clutter around the office. It also means your staff will not have to waste time hunting around for resources when they need them.
When it comes to maximising your space, it’s also a good idea to consider creating multi-purpose spaces.
Meeting rooms and even break areas can be designed to double as workspaces so employees can take a break from their desk or convene informal meetings.
Installing vertical shelving on walls can also free up floor space and incorporating some stand up meetings can also reduce the need for multiple meeting rooms.
Maximising your office space can help create more enjoyable office environments and frees up space to include more features that help boost productivity.