4 Reasons Office Design Is Important for Productivity

4 Reasons Office Design Is Important for Productivity

As a small business entrepreneur we have a number of things to always be thinking of, such as marketing, hiring and finances. One slightly overlooked area, which is also very important to consider, is how our offices (home or otherwise) are designed. Afterall, it's where we spend a good portion of our time and a strong design and layout could help to increase mood, efficiency and productivity.

Turnstone, a Steelcase company, has a lot of insight on office design. Their General Manager, Brian Shapland shares why office design is so important and the impact it has on productivity, as discovered in a recent survey conducted that shows that physical space has a direct impact on company culture, employee engagement, well-being and productivity.

The best office spaces include a variety of settings and postures for professionals to move between, based on the type of work being done.
"Creating great spaces goes beyond a fresh coat of paint, terrific artwork and plentiful storage." says Shapland. "We’re finding that the best spaces include a variety of settings and postures for professionals to move between, based on the type of work being done. For some, standing height tables resonate, and for others, a desk brings focus. But as work changes, so do workplace preferences. Recent Turnstone survey results indicate that 48% of those with lounge settings available to them in the office are using them to do real work—not just to socialize or collaborate with others."


Young professionals want lounge settings. Recent Turnstone research found that 32% of workers between the ages of 18-34 prefer working in lounge settings rather than traditional ones. Whether it’s because Millenials have grown up in a wireless world or because the nature of their work simply enables mobility, this group values the freedom to choose where and how they work—and to be comfortable doing it.

office design

TIP: Allowing your team to work the way they want promotes a culture of authenticity and fuels productivity. The Turnstone Slim Table provides power in lounge settings and offers plenty of space for coffee cups and project materials. Pairs perfectly with movable Skate Table so that work adjusts to you, rather than you adjusting to your work.

Attract great talent—and keep them. In today’s competitive job market, offering perks like multiple work areas within the office, flexible schedules and a great culture can be trump cards for choosy candidates. Not only does a fun, interactive culture foster relationships and provide a sense of belonging at work, but flexibility breeds satisfaction. Research revealed that 88% of happy, engaged employees enjoy the freedom to choose where to work within the office.

TIP: Design your office to provide a palette of place and posture to complement the variety of tasks your team tackles each day. These ancillary spaces allow your people to “get away without going away.” Leaders, remember to model the use of each space so workers feel empowered to do the same.

Increased productivity = increased bottom line. There’s no doubt that happy employees are productive employees. Steelcase research* shows that 98% of satisfied employees report that they concentrate easily, 97% feel free to express and share ideas, and 95% say they’re able to work in teams without being interrupted. But this kind of success doesn’t come by accident—areas where collaboration and solo work can happen without interruption are the product of careful space planning—not good luck.

TIP: Remember to include quiet spaces, areas for total privacy, zones for fun and group work places so that team members can migrate throughout the day.

Improve Well-being. World Crunch reports that roughly $300 billion is lost annually due to stress in the global workplace, and the CDC says that 60% of all lost work days can be attributed to stress—more than those related to personal finances or family issues. Ease job-related stress by creating spaces in the office that encourage movement and help your team relax.

TIP: Integrate walk stations, “active sitting” options, standing height tables and lounge postures into your office design. Turnstone’s Footrest gives lightweight, dependable support to both standing height positions (as you shift your weight) and seated lounge postures (backs of legs). Finally, whenever possible, allow natural light and living plants to brighten your space and boost well-being.


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