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Your office matters - 7 ways to create a happier, more productive workplace | The JotForm Blog

Consider your company's needs

How do your teams work best? What are their physical and technological needs?

The seven attributes to consider when determining your optimal workspace: location, enclosure, exposure, technology, temporality, perspective, and size.

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Your office matters - 7 ways to create a happier, more productive workplace | The JotForm Blog

Your office matters - 7 ways to create a happier, more productive workplace | The JotForm Blog

https://www.jotform.com/blog/productive-office-design/

jotform.com

7

Key Ideas

Natural light

Natural light is the most fundamental element of a welcoming space.

Employees prefer natural light and views of the outdoors to onsite cafeterias, fitness centers, and daycare. Natural light not only improves health and wellness among workers; it also has been shown to encourage creativity.

Add in the green

People who work in offices with leafy green plants concentrate better than those who work without greenery. Reconnecting workers with a natural environment results in fewer sick days. 

Adding some plants to the office will give your team both a brain and a mood boost.

Consider your company's needs

How do your teams work best? What are their physical and technological needs?

The seven attributes to consider when determining your optimal workspace: location, enclosure, exposure, technology, temporality, perspective, and size.

Offer various types of workspaces

Providing a mix of multiple workspaces, including open space, has been shown to improve employee engagement because people can choose the right area for the task at hand.

For example, you can offer a living room area with comfy couches, as well as a library area for reading and intense focus. Provide booths for private phone calls, as well as individual workstations or “home bases” for team members to set up shop.

Banish boxiness

Boxy cubicle shapes aren’t just bland; they can actually impair creativity. Round edges and circular design are said to put creatives subconsciously at ease, freeing up their minds for invaluable innovation.

Curved edges also inspire conversation, and allow for more organic movement among employees. 

Cut the corner office

Employees should be organized by function or team, rather than by status, which mixes the managers with the juniors; the new with the seasoned.

You never know when a spontaneous interaction will inspire your company’s next brilliant idea, so your office design should be as egalitarian as possible.

Focus on (your employees’) feelings

A company should continually ask staff members how they feel about the office:

  • Is it a place where they want to work?
  • What would make it feel more comfortable and productive?

Keep tabs on how closely your employees identify with their workspace and make updates as needed.

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Stale Office Air

The air you are breathing in enclosed spaces could be impairing your cognitive function.

Bringing more fresh air inside, or having a good ventilation syste...

Poor Lighting

Being close to natural sunlight can make or break an employee’s experience. 

Productivity gains (and losses) are connected to employees’ environmental conditions, so companies that create ideal office environments with abundant natural light and unobstructed outdoors views will reap the dividends.

The Colleagues You Sit With

People’s moods are contagious. When your co-worker is rude, you will start to catch their bad attitude, too.

Sitting within a 25-foot radius of a high performer could positively boost the performance of colleagues by 15 %.

2 more ideas

Introduce some greenery

One study found that workers in spaces with plants showed a 15 % higher productivity compared to those in plain...

Show appreciation

Creating motivation and making your team feel appreciated is a critical part of long-term productivity.

Encourage your team to keep gratitude journals - writing down a couple of sentences about what you are currently grateful for a couple of times a week. This practice improves productivity by increasing happiness.

Create some privacy

If people can't focus on their work, they are less effective in areas like collaboration and learning, and they are less likely to be satisfied with their jobs.

Workplaces with a balance between individual focus and collaboration are more innovative, creative and encouraging.

3 more ideas

Focus on Employee Wellbeing

The more stress-free and healthy an employee is, the more he will make the company great and prosperous.

If more employers take care of their employees' personal growth, the employees will he...

Meditation

For clarity, stability and better mental health, meditation (or mindfulness) is a universally recognized training activity.

Break from Work

Breaks and time-outs lead to better productivity, as they allow the mind to form connections and help in creativity and even relationships.

3 more ideas

Your workspace matters
Your workspace matters
When you spend hours at your desk every day, even the smallest features of your workspace – such as the position of your monitor or the height of your chair– can greatly affect your productivity and e...
Lighting
  • The best kind of light you can have in your office is natural light. It helps our bodies maintain our internal "clocks" or circadian rhythms which affects our sleep and energy. 
  • Poor lighting, whether it's dim lighting or harsh lighting from overhead fluorescent lights, can cause eye strain, stress, and fatigue.
  • Don't sit with your back to a window unless you can shade it.
  • Don't sit facing a window because that will make reading a monitor difficult. 
  • If you use a task lamp at your desk, position it so the bottom of the lampshade is at about the height of your chin when it's on.
Plants
  • Indoor plants prevent fatigue during attention-demanding work. 
  • Even just having a window view of live greenery can be restorative and keep us focused.
  • A peace lily plant requires little sunlight to survive and you only have to water it when the soil is dried out and is also great for cleaning the air.
  • Cacti and aloe plants are other low-maintenance plants to consider.

9 more ideas

Early times

Before the Industrial revolution, everyone worked out of their home and sold their goods from there. With the Industrial Revolution came the need for automation and factories, and employ...

From factories to cubicles to WiFi

Just after WW2, there was a rise in corporate headquarters and larger office spaces and cubicles. During this time, the 8-hour workday was established.

Then came the advancements in computers and technology that lead to remote workers of today. The internet and public WiFi allowed employees to do everything they would in their cubicle, but outside the office. They can also work all hours of the day.

Remote work is common

4.3 million people currently work from home in the United States at least half of the time, and this figure has grown by 150% in the last 13 years.  

Remote workers tend to have higher engagement rates and higher productivity levels. Once they switch to remote work, they rarely want to become office bound again.

2 more ideas

Changes you may see

If and when you return to your office after the pandemic, you'll probably notice some changes.

  • The doors of the building may open automatically, so you don't have to touch the handl...
Working from home

Before the pandemic, only 4 percent of the US workforce worked from home at least half the time. However, the trend of working from home had been gaining momentum for years.

It is estimated that within a couple of years, 30% of people will work from home multiple days per week.

Continued remote work
  • Before the pandemic, a lot of company management and leaders were skeptical regarding remote work. But the skepticism will go away because companies recognize that remote work does work.
  • The economic impact of the pandemic will likely force employers to cut costs. They may reduce their rent by letting workers work from home instead of layoffs.
  • Employers had to spend money on new technology and equipment to work from home - a departure from the norm.
  • Employees themselves are also spending more money to create better home offices.

4 more ideas

Noise in the office

The open office sitting plan in many organizations has made some people lament on all kinds of office-specific noise they hear, and the kind of noise their neighboring colleagues make.

Noise-...

Noise affects us differently

Some individuals like a certain office ambient noise, even music, as it makes them concentrate more, or provides a distraction, which is also needed.

Others have an extreme aversion, a sort of panic attack to distracting sounds, which is called Misophonia.

Extroverts and Introverts

Extroverts seek and find noisy environments comfortable, while introverts are the opposite, and run away to solitary comfort after interacting with people.

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Remote-first Mindset

Accept that you have to put in place remote work systems, even if more than half of your employees ultimately revert to office-based work.

  • If done right, a remote-first infrastructu...
Build a socially-connected culture

Intentionally design for the same interactions that would otherwise happen if people were in the office.

  • Culture is what naturally happens when a group of people gets together for any period.
  • A great culture happens with intentional design and influence. It's the reason you should make your company's mission, vision, values, operating principles, standards, and agreements visible. 
  • Culture is experienced through emotions, including how your employees feel about the company, you, other leaders, and peers. That feeling is developed through human interaction at the water cooler, kitchen, or hallway conversations.
Your leadership presence

Your people need to feel your presence as a leader as they will have fewer opportunities to see you face to face when they work remotely.

  • Regularly show up in a variety of forms that can include weekly video meetings, periodic company-wide emails, or presence in public channels.
  • Err on the side of more communication rather than less.

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Why diversity matters.
Why diversity matters.

Diverse Companies with a wide range of employees enjoy broader skill sets, experiences, and points of view.

How to Increase Diversity and Boost Performance
  • Develop an equal opportunity policy.
  • Be transparent about hiring criteria.

  • Improve retention of minority workers.

  • Analyze problems and adapt. Train managers to spot their biases and avoid communicating in ways that unconsciously deter minority candidates.

  • Implement workplace flexibility.