Redesign = productiviy boost?
Over time, a workplace can become stagnant and uninviting which can actually affect your employees’ quality of work and productivity. Studies show that the average employee spends 72% of working hours at their desk and that ergonomic improvements can improve productivity as much as 17%. These high percentages suggest that the need to ensure and enhance employee productivity and performance is a reality no business can ignore. You do not necessarily need a complete redesign or a Google’s playground office to improve employee output, but just a sprucing up. Here’s how you can keep your employees engaged and productive:
The childhood concept is moving into the workplace. That does not mean that the office environment will resemble a playground or employees will act as 6 year olds, but rather micromanaging office seating arrangements and shifting employees every now and then. Seating is definitely not something you will think about when redesigning your office, but where you sit impacts how well you can work and how engaged you feel.
Until now, you may have been sitting next to the same group of people without having the chance to get to know the people on the other side of the office. Shuffling will foster relationships, help gain a better understanding about what colleagues do, as well as spur efficiency and innovation. Connections, however, should be logical. Seek out the teams who work closely or those who could be more effective and efficient with proximity before accommodating these opportunities, for example marketing with product development teams and sales with finance department.
Knowing the psychology of the employees is another factor that will help you determine the most efficient seating plan. A workplace usually contains similar proportions of introverts and extroverts, but you may wonder if introverts who focus their energy inwards can work well together with extroverts who are gregarious and sociable.
Nigel Oceland’s research revealed that “the most effective teams are those that consist of a healthy mix of introverts and extroverts”. It might take them a little bit longer to bond, but they will ultimately deliver more creative, innovative and successful outputs. Embracing your opposites and encouraging diversity in your teams is the way for astonishing outcomes that simply cannot be achieved without it.
Right or Left?
Have you ever asked your employees whether they are left or right handed? Probably no, as the majority of UK employers (96.7%) do not make questions about handedness. In most cases, the workstations are being laid out incorrectly, making it difficult for left-handed workers to use right-handed stationery, keyboards, scissors and other computer accessories.
If you are not willing to go the extra mile for your left-handed employees, i.e. to provide suitable equipment, then at least put the computer mouse on the left hand side and the telephone on their right side in order to be able to answer the phone with their right hand, leaving their left hand free for writing. If you take your employees’ needs into consideration, you will not only increase employee productivity, but also make them feel valued and well-supported.
People spend more and more time at work and the importance of the spatial, furniture and seating arrangement creates positive influences on employees’ wellbeing, performance and creativity. Therefore, rejuvenating a tired office, by stimulating staff and increasing their productivity levels, should be the first step to improving business performance. Improving your workspace is a short-time investment in money and time, but it offers long-term benefits.