The workplace is our second home, for this is where we spend most of our time apart from our house. The workplace environment and ambiance also signify our work efficiency and is directly responsible for our mental health. There have been many studies that showed that changing a workplace ambiance can improve various performance metrics and can also boost employee morale. Today we will talk about fifteen such office upgrades which can help you improve your office ambiance. Think of them as an investment for a better future. Let us begin.
15 Most Essential Office Upgrades To Help You Boost Productivity At Workplace
The Office Air Quality Upgrades
We all know and read about the rising wrong air quality index published city-wise in the earlier months. We must do something to rectify this. Otherwise, the future could be disastrous for us. As a company, we can commit to being a carbon-neutral entity, but regarding our employee wellbeing, we can save to an air purifier at the least.
You can also install a sound air filtration system if you are operating a big office. Whatever you do, make sure the ventilation system is rock solid. The carbon dioxide level should be below 1000 ppm as a research study found that carbon dioxide levels between 1000 ppm and 2500 ppm reduce the brain’s cognitive functions by a good deal.
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Very few human beings can keep their focus well for a long time without adequate breaks. People have an inherent nature to socialize with others, so encourage this. Make the break room pleasant and comfortable so that your employees can chat and items of snacks or other similar food and recharge their minds.
Hire an interior designer and tell them to use light and complementary colors in the break room. If possible, use a soft fabric sofa for the better comfort of your employees. Also, install not-so-high-powered lights; instead, use a low-watt LED batten.
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Upgrade Office Desks
You do not want your employees to talk among themselves like ‘Agh! The desks near me are, hands down, the worst’ or ‘I hate typing on my squeaky desk,’ etc. Employee gossip like this makes other employees wonder whether their desk is suitable for their work or not, even if they are okay. You can manage this situation in two ways.
You can either forbid employees to stop gossiping about the quality of office desks, or you can do something about the quality of the office desks. We suggest you do something about it. Instead of suppressing employees’ opinions, give them no reason to complain. An office desk is an integral part of your employee’s work life, and this is where most of the work happens, so invest for upgrades in a suitable quality office desk today.
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Corporate Culture Upgrades In Office
If your office culture is always straightforward and just down to business as usual, then it is doing more harm than good. It would help if you modified it as soon as possible. Studies have shown that a rigorous work environment makes employees feel nervous and makes them closed. So they might not be forthcoming even if they have an excellent proposal.
You should encourage people to come up with ideas and innovations and help them get along with management. Do not make the work environment too informal, then it will become a hippie culture, but at least try to upgrade the office corporate culture welcoming towards employees. This is also the primary reason people are not satisfied with their job and leave; adding to further employee attrition rate.
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Separate Entertainment Activities
Give some time off to your employees for entertainment purposes. Organize some fun and engaging events like a pool, billiards or carrom games, etc. It has been seen that employees perform better; when they are in a relaxed state of mind. So to encourage you to organize these events. Even global tech giants like Google, Microsoft, etc., have specific employee entertainment zones dubbed as ‘chill-out zones.
Employees who work in a fun office environment are more likely to stay than others; who might be tempted to leave as soon as their contract is over.
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Office Working Posture Upgrades
It has been discovered in some studies that; the working posture and sitting position is the root cause of many physical problems; it has made it even worse. Neck problems, body aches, tiredness, etc.; are some of the difficulties associated with a bad sitting posture. To eliminate problems like these, invest or encourage employees to take corrective steps like external lumbar support, short breaks between work, etc. Also, if the employees frequently suffer from these problems, it can be problematic and add to further costs.
Since employees will take more sick leave and do less work, this indirectly costs your company. Invest in a suitable quality office chair and, if possible, give your employees at least the option of a standing desk. Standing desk ideas might sound very extreme, but studies have shown that they improve employees’ concentration levels.
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This is a subjective topic, but a fit employee is a good employee. When people become obese, they generally lack the energy and motivation to go the extra mile; and get the work done. Several studies have illustrated that physical activity improves mental concentration, power, and body. Being stuck with their 8 hours plus job makes them lazy; so they can easily overcome this by free giving them access to a company gym.
Even if you don’t own a gym, it does not matter. You could always sign a contract with any other local or preferred gym company and give your employees special access to their facilities. It might be a costly affair, but let me assure you, it is probably the best expense you will ever make. Also, not only does having a gym matter; what also needs to be done is encourage your employees to use this facility; educate them about the various benefits of physical exercise, and even incentivize them to stay fit and healthy.
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Office Canteen Upgrades
Employees could save up a lot of time if they had good food options in the office canteen at a reasonable price. They do not need fancy restaurant-type food stalls or anything. All they need is some good, nutritious and affordable food options. If you provide some subsidy for purchasing food through the office canteen, that will be a bonus. So try to strike some good deals with your local food vendor and implement some healthy food choices and preferable one with less oil and carbs.
According to a recent research paper printed by a renowned university, people are more than willing to change to a healthier diet; if they had been made available within their budget. So this proves that people want to change their food lifestyle to a healthier one; but are limited to the current pattern due to budget constraints. You should help your employees at least overcome this problem by choosing to eat only healthy food items.
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Upgrade Office Lights
Studies have shown that most employees react differently to various lighting settings. Some find a particular location dark, while others may find it too much. Overall it is a very confusing and complicated decision to make. So what you can do to help your employees work more efficiently is make your office more accessible towards natural light.
A good source of natural light can automatically uplight employee mood and may even help them with other problems like eye strain, itchiness of the pupil, etc. Also, suppose the light temperature is too warm. In that case, that can generally affect computer screen reading abilities, so try to maintain a cooler temperature light, LEDs if possible since they consume less electricity than a bulb. That way, your employees will feel better and be more focused on tasks.
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There has been a remarkable drop in employee performance; when they were made to work in a noisy environment, showed a research study. So try to make the environment as peaceful as possible by soundproofing the windows and dampening the floor. You could also choose a work location which is preferably not situated; near any market or heavy human population. People cannot simply focus on finishing work; if they are getting constantly distracted; even by the sound of a door opening.
You know that squeaky sounds which come from old door hinges, get rid of that. Also, supplying your employees with noise-canceling headphones would be a good but expensive idea, but worth thinking about. Also, glass doors are a good idea if your office setup is like a traditional one. But remember to educate employees about the importance of whispering in an office. Otherwise, all your efforts will be in vain.
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Images by S O C I A L . C U T, Adolfo Félix, Petr Magera and Carlos Muza