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5 easy design tweaks for a more productive and happier office space

We spend most of our waking hours in the office, which is why there is a need to have a working space that’s well designed, not only for more productivity, but also to create a happier environment where employees want to work in.

And it doesn’t require an entire overhaul to create such an atmosphere. All it takes are simple tweaks to the environment and you will create a space that will keep your employees energised and eager to return to the office every day. Here are 5 ways to do so.

1. Drive more light into the space

A lack of natural light is often the most overlooked benefits in office design. It can lead to a negative impact on the mood and productivity of your employees. Make a note of how much natural light the office receives. See if there is a way to increase or make optimal use of it. Try positioning the desks in such a manner that they receive good amount of natural light. However, if your office space receives no or very little natural light use full spectrum bulbs to stimulate light, soft, and warm daylight. Spotlights will also make a good choice.


2. Play with colours

Colours have long been proven to affect people’s productivity, attitude and mood at work, then be it their level of productivity. World renowned colour psychologist Angela Wright talks about how every individual has certain preferences for colour and how it influences people universally.

According to her theory, blue is the colour that stimulates mind. It is accepted as one of the most productive colours of all. It also induces calmness and stability.

Green, on the other hand, is often linked to broader thinking, and stimulating creativity. It also promotes a feeling of balance and growth together.

Red, unlike others, is an emotionally intense colour which provides an energy boost, but it is often shortlived. Thus, it ultimately reduces the analytical thinking.

Brown is associated with laziness, while white causes people to reflect on their own thoughts. Choosing the appropriate colour isn’t enough as the saturation and intensity of the colour is important. Highly saturated and bright colours stimulate emotions while soft and muted shades soothe a person’s temperament. You don’t need to paint your whole office in a single tone. Instead, opt for accents that suit different teams engaged in different types of work.

Choosing the appropriate colour isn’t enough as the saturation and intensity of the colour is important. Highly saturated and bright colours stimulate emotions while soft and muted shades soothe a person’s temperament. You don’t need to paint your whole office in a single tone. Instead, opt for accents that suit different teams engaged in different types of work.


3. Invest in furniture

Often companies are tempted to save money on budget furniture. It may seem like a great move initially, but in the long term, it is not cost saving at all.

Your employees are going to spend a majority of their time sitting on their office chair. A cheap chair can lead to back pain and general discomfort which can eventually make a person feel uncomfortable as well as frustrated. If you’re sourcing for an ergonomic one, check out this list of office chairs in Singapore. Additionally, invest in a good desk too, which can help get rid of the annoying cable spaghetti underfoot.

Tip: Try adding some wooden furniture to your office space or a collection of plants to make the place feel cosier and homely.


4. Open plan or closed cubes?

To go with an open plan layout or closed cubicles is still very much a question of debate. Unfortunately, there is no straightforward answer. As the environment of each office is unique, it is important to take time to consider the pros and cons of each layout option. Consider which layout would best fit the type of work in the office and the type of culture you’re hoping to create.

Closed cubes, ironically, were designed to save us from old open-plan offices. In 1960, designer Robert Propst concluded that the office workers required autonomy and independence. Thus, he came up with a flexible, three-walled design called a cubicle.

On the contrary, latest office trends have been to trend towards an open environment. The logic behind it is to make employees happier and more productive. To help them work together instead of being isolated behind office walls. But, according to recent studies, it may turn out to be frustrating for some due to lack of privacy.

Ultimately, look at the size of your company and the role of your employees to help you pick a layout that works best for you.


5. Get rid of the clutter

The smaller the office, the more important it becomes to make sure that everything works together. In larger offices, clients may never get to see the actual work areas. But when it comes to small space, offices, there is no such thing. Everything is out in the open. Therefore, it is crucial to keep the workspace free of clutter, tidy, and organised in order to create a good impression for your clients who visit.

But it doesn’t mean a large office can be full of clutter. A clutter-free zone can create more efficiency as things are easily located. It’s important to incorporate a storage unit to deal with storage issues.

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