“Our firm engaged Mia to do a big job in our new office. With only 10 days to finish a huge project, we though they would not manage it on time. However they did it! Well done boys!!! Thank you, you are a professional team, and have great attention to detail. We would recommend you to everyone who needs any construction or painting work. They are really, really good.” – George
The world of work is changing; flexible working will become more commonplace with the majority of employees spending fewer days in the office. It is the perfect time to look at adapting your office to make it more suitable for hot-desking and flexible work patterns.
In order to recruit and retain the best employees, you have to create a positive and healthy work environment. By 2025 ”millennials” will make up 75% of the workforce1 and they have very different drivers and motivations within the workplace compared to previous generations. Working for a caring and ethical employer, will be a top priority; more important even than salary. So how will you show your employees that you care about their health and wellbeing? Their working environment is a great place to start.
Wellbeing in the office
Studies have shown that the layout of your office and providing up to date furnishing and decor is important for staff wellbeing.2,3 But how exactly do you achieve this?
There are two main areas to consider – firstly the space where your employees actually sit (or stand) to do their work, and secondly the break out or ‘non work’ spaces. More and more, employers are seeing the value of both.
Updating the working space
Your office should be well spaced out so that colleagues are not climbing over each other. Being cramped together can be difficult and distracting for employees. Have you ever tried to proofread an email while someone is on the phone right next to you? Of course, you may be worried your office isn’t big enough to space out desks, but this is where hot-desking is the way forward. Many of your employees will expect a blend of home working and office working, so use this to your advantage. It may not be necessary to have a desk for every member of staff. but you can have lockers or cupboards assigned to each member of staff so they all still have a dedicated storage space.
It is also important to give staff privacy. While you might be tempted to set up the desks so that you can see everyone’s screens, it can make employees feel uncomfortable. They may think you don’t trust them and some may feel self-conscious about their work. Perhaps your employees have to do private or sensitive work from time to time. It isn’t fair to put them in a position where they are concerned their colleagues can see their screen. You could also consider having private rooms or partitioned off areas for people to work. This can be valuable for important meetings or phone calls, or if someone has a deadline they are racing to meet.
When it comes to the decor, think about the atmosphere you want to create. Plants are always a great idea, with many studies4 showing a multitude of benefits such as reducing stress, cleaning the air, increasing productivity and reducing sick days.
Another thing to consider is your colour palette for your walls and furnishing. Ask yourself, what is your goal for your employees? If you want your employees to feel creative and energised, choose yellow or orange. Green on the other hand, can help improve concentration.
Ergonomics! The buzz word of the last 10 years. Make sure your employees have good quality adjustable chairs and consider providing desks which can be adjusted for standing use. This is another great way to improve your employee’s health and wellbeing and keep them feeling energised throughout the day.
Updating your breakout spaces
Having a good break out space where employees can take their lunch, away from their desk, allows them to have a proper rest during the day. It is also a great place for them to chat with colleagues on a more casual basis helping create better working relationships. If you have a large office with a number of teams who don’t work together regularly, this is a way to promote staff cohesion amongst those teams. The spaces should have a relaxed, modern and comfortable atmosphere. It should be a place people enjoy taking a break in. Grotty old kitchens with hard, wobbly chairs are a big no no!
And yes, the colour palette of your breakout space is important as well! Use colours that promote relaxation such as blues and pale pinks. Oh, and in case you are wondering… investing in fancy bean bag chairs and air hockey tables isn’t really necessary and could even be seen as a bit of a gimmick.
And what you shouldn’t do….
5 mistakes to avoid when renovating your office
- Poor lighting = decreased productivity, sore eyes and migraines. Low lighting can make it difficult to see computer screens meaning staff will strain their eyes. On the other hand, harsh overly bright lighting can cause headaches. The best type of lighting is natural so instal windows where you can and if you are partitioning the room consider using glass so that light can travel through the office.
- Forgetting about your reception area – think of this as your first impression, make it count. At Mia, we provide beautiful, high quality reception desks that will impress your customers on arrival.
- Not providing great storage solutions. Have you ever wasted an afternoon looking for something in a cluttered office cupboard?
- Desks facing windowless walls – position them with a window view or a view of the rest of the office. Try and avoid having desks right next to outside doors too, as this can create an uncomfortable draft for the employee sitting there.
- Keeping outdated furniture and decor – you may decide to do a partial renovation on your office but keep your old furniture to save money. This goes back to the study mentioned earlier2. Having an attractive, modern office really does improve staff wellbeing and increase staff retention, saving you money in the long run.
Renovating your office with Mia
Choosing Mia Kitchens and Bathrooms for your office renovation is the way to ensure that you get a design and final product that you love. We are a highly professional team. The thing that makes us different is the care we take over your place of work. We will leave your office cleaner than we found it…. and that’s a promise!
An important part of the renovation process with Mia is our 3D visualisation tool. This enables you to see how the final design will look like before we start the work. We can make changes based on the 3D visualisation to make sure you are 100% happy before we begin.
We provide a full suite of renovation services including creating partition walls; plastering; painting; fitted cabinets and desks; sanding; and replacing flooring. Find out more about these services on our renovations page.
We have all the best up to date equipment to produce high quality, efficient results and we only work with the very best suppliers and contractors who uphold our high standards.
If you are ready to keep your staff happy, improve productivity and increase staff retention rates, get in touch. We help you create a healthy, happy office environment that promotes a balance of hard work and valuable rest time. It’s time to love the way you work.