The affect office interiors has on the wellbeing and health of employees has long been talked about, but a new report from the World Green Building Council found there to be "overwhelming evidence" well-designed offices have a positive impact on the health, wellbeing and productivity of staff in the work place.
The report, entitled 'Health, Wellbeing and Productivity in Offices: The Next Chapter for Green Buildings', reveals anything including good air quality, lighting and having a room with a view can influence an employee's job satisfaction, performance and health. These findings forced experts to conclude how office interiors 'work for people' should be the number one priority in office designs.
The authors argue any additional costs from the design or construction of office buildings would be significantly outweighed by the benefits of even the smallest improvements in staff health and performance.
Jane Henley, chief executive of the World Green Building Council, said: "The evidence linking good office design and improved health, wellbeing and productivity of staff is now overwhelming.
"There is unquestionably a clear case business for investing in, developing and occupying healthier, greener buildings."
Geoff Dutaillis, group head of sustainability at Lend Lease, said: "Whatever business you are in, you are in the business of people. How a building 'works for people' should be the priority question.
The report provides further evidence that workplaces with clean air, natural daylight and engaging and adaptable layouts all contribute to making healthier, happier and more motivated individuals who create stronger, more resilient and profitable companies.
The potential cost to businesses which don't spend the time or money on building healthier office interiors is huge. In the United Kingdom alone, poor mental health costs businesses £30 billion per year due to loss of production, recruitment and absence.
StaffanHaglind, business office for Skanska Green added: "Giving employees the best possible conditions to perform and stay healthy is not only wise from a financial perspective, it's just the right thing to do."
At Oaktree Interiors, we have years of experience in redesigning offices so we've offered some tips for healthier work spaces.
Ergonomics – Back and joint pain is an issue for workers who sit at desks all day. Ensure all furniture and the setup of work stations is ergonomic so there's no strain on employees. There should also be space for employees to walk and communal areas away from desks.
Colours – People are universally influenced by colours. For example, blue will stimulate the mind. Hue and saturation of colours are also factors. Think carefully about colour schemes, including walls and accents.
Light – Natural light boosts productivity, creativity and energy. A good source of light throughout the day will help employees get a good night sleep, too, so they're wide awake and happier during the day.
For healthier office interiors, call us at Oaktree Interiors on 0845 474 3556 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to make your business more productive and profitable.