If you’ve been thinking about office furniture and equipment strictly as necessities, then you’re missing the greater picture of how furnishing affects employees and performance. Don’t be so quick to write off your office equipment as merely expenses, when they present excellent opportunities to become valuable investment pieces.
A workspace that operates from quality furnishing and equipment will give back in the following ways:
A Return on Health and Wellness
One clear investment you can expect are the short and long-term health benefits of flexible workstations. Ergonomic chairs and surface areas that you can adjust to different heights can greatly improve working conditions for your employees. Combine this with adjustable mice, keyboards, and monitors and you’ve just created the most comfortable workstation imaginable.
Ergonomic furniture are shown to greatly reduce these common workplace ailments:
- Avoiding and addressing carpal tunnel syndrome
- Back pain issues
- Stiff necks
- Poor posture and the dreaded dowager’s hump
With improved workstation designed, you can expect better output. Your team’s morale and job satisfaction is also likely to improve in the absence of physical ailments. According to research done by human scale, major companies saw a huge decrease in worker comp cases and missed work days after introducing ergonomics into their workspaces.
A Return on Creativity
As companies look for more ways to strengthen their teams ability to innovate, creating inspiring working conditions is a growing priority. The furniture used in your office takes up the largest amount of space, and carries tremendous influence on motivating your team, impressing clients, and shaping workflow.
To demonstrate the creative influence of office design, this study in 2011 involved hundreds of undergrads and how they felt in different work environments just based on furniture. The undergraduates were shown images of room interiors and strongly prefered those filled with curvilinear (rounded), as opposed to rectilinear furniture. They felt that the rounded furniture was more pleasing and inviting. We know that people in a positive mood and relaxed environment are more likely to produce creative thoughts.
Aside from using rounded furniture, you’ll see a better return on creativity by arranging furniture in a circular shape as well. You can use round tables in coworking spaces or meeting rooms to support team efforts and inventive projects. Round tables are better for creating a connected mindset that are essential for collaborative projects.
Another thing to consider when furnishing for creativity, is to provide both spaces for collaboration as well as solo work areas for independent brainstorming. By providing your staff with spacious workspaces, where they don’t feel chained to their computer, you’ll be giving them the freedom and variety they need to work creatively.
A Return on Efficiency
Workstations will help determine whether communication flows seamlessly between team members, organization, and what tools can be kept or quickly shared amongst employees. With the appropriate kind of furniture and equipment, staff will have what they need to produce better quality work with greater efficiency.
Some tips for keeping different work areas running efficiently:
Meeting rooms: Keep your meetings productive with good lighting, conference tables with data and outlet options, different projectors, and ample seating.
Workstations: Improve efficiency with desks large enough to hold all necessary equipment, or create shared workstations with quick access to printers, phones, and other resources.
Communication: Speed up communication using headsets, low partition workstations, or group tables.
Next time your workspace is in dire need of some upgrades, don’t be so quick to write them off as expenses. An experienced office fitout company will have resources to furniture and equipment that you may not be able to find otherwise. Remember, the furniture and equipment you choose are investments that make a difference in job performance on a daily basis.