The average person in the United States spends about 90,000 hours at work over the course of their lifetime. And if you’re a business owner, this number will likely be even higher!
Because such a large portion of our lives are spent at work, it’s essential that you enjoy being there. Finding your passion is the first step, but loving where you work is almost as important as loving what you do. If you have a poor office layout, you won’t be getting as positive an experience as you could be.
So, to help you improve your and your employees’ time at work, we’ve put together a list of some of the best tips and tricks to designing the perfect modern office layout.
Let’s get started!
Variety is the Spice of Life – and the Ideal Office
No two people are exactly alike. Because of this, chances are high that different employees work best in different environments. To help accommodate everyone’s working styles, make an effort to include a variety of spaces in your office design.
You should have collaboration areas, quiet spaces, traditional desks, and more relaxed work areas. If your employees are working in their ideal environment, they’ll be happier and more productive!
Include Your Employees in the Design
Instead of guessing what types of office spaces your employees might enjoy, why not include them in the design process? This can be as simple as surveying them on their preferred working environment or as involved as allowing them to order their own furniture for their office.
Do what feels right for you and your office! If you have a dedicated team that you feel confident will stick around for years to come, giving them the freedom to choose their own desks or chairs can make them feel appreciated and cared for.
Purchase Pieces with Ergonomics in Mind
Assuming you work in a somewhat typical office environment, you and your employees spend the majority of the day at a desk or at least in a chair. To keep everyone as healthy and pain-free as possible, it’s important to purchase furniture with ergonomics in mind.
There are tons of in depth guides to workplace ergonomics available online, but here are a few quick tips.
If you’re working in a seated position:
- Feet should rest flat on the floor
- Knees, hips, and elbows should be at a 90 degree angle
- Chairs should provide spine support
If you’re working in a standing position:
- Feet should rest on an even surface
- Anti-fatigue mats should be available for use
- Elbows should be at a 90 degree angle
Speaking of working positions, it’s a good idea to provide adjustable desks for your employees if possible. These allow movement and change of position throughout the day.
Sitting for 8 hours at a time isn’t good for you, but neither is standing in place. It’s best to alternate between the two, with breaks for walks and stretching mixed in.
Include Natural Light and Greenery
Nothing boosts productivity and happiness like a bit of nature. To improve both the look and feel of your office space, you should include plenty of natural light and plant life. Now, you don’t want to overdo it and make your office feel like a jungle, but a few plants here and there can do wonders for the air quality and overall vibe of your office.
Natural light will prevent your employees from sinking into the dreaded afternoon slump, as it helps to regulate the circadian rhythm. It’s also an excellent source of vitamin D and increases seratonin levels in the body. Seratonin causes feelings of happiness, calm, and focus, so you want as much of it as you can get!
Keep Your Decor Balanced
There’s sometimes a fine line between a aesthetically pleasing and overwhelming decor. Knowing where that line is and how not to cross it is a crucial part of your office layout plan.
Your office space can and should include all sorts of decor, from plants to artwork to company branding. No one likes a bland, boring office with no character – nothing will drain the productivity from your employees faster than a sterile environment.
However, take care not to overdo it. Too much of a good thing, in this case decor, can make the space feel cramped and chaotic. The goal should be a warm, inviting office with more than enough space to move and breath.
Yes, the primary function of an office is to be a place for work. But the best way to create unproductive employees is to expect them to work non-stop for 8 hours straight.
Show them love and appreciation by providing some fun or helpful amenities in the workplace! Include a game room or corner in your open office layout for breaks, a walking track around the edge of the main area, or a media room with TVs and video games.
Supplying snacks and drinks, healthy and otherwise, through vending machines is another great idea. And if you have the space and the budget for it, providing on-site childcare can be a huge weight off your employees’ shoulders.
Design the Ultimate Office Layout with These Tips
Your office layout can make or break your office space. Obviously, you want to focus on creating the best office environment and culture you can, but your office design should be factored into the equation as well.
By using these office layout ideas, you and your employees will love coming to work every day even more!
Looking for more advice on creating the office space of your dreams? Be sure to check out our blog!