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No fresh air or natural light | Office workers find their health impacted by the offices they work in

No fresh air or natural light | Office workers find their health impacted by the offices they work in
  • No natural lighting, lack of fresh air, and noisy working environments negatively impact workers health in the office, according to a recent survey from online office agency Free Office Finder.
  • 18-34 year-olds are most affected by poor office spaces, causing a reduction in productivity by a large portion of the business workforce.
  • Business productivity is being impacted by their very offices, with a lack of places to take a quiet break and impersonal and unwelcoming working areas.
  • Staff working in the south-east of England complained about a lack of fresh air more than those in the north of England.
  • Free Office Finder has identified simple steps to help boost productivity and staff morale.

How does your office negatively affect you?

  1. Not enough fresh air 32%
  2. Not enough natural light 28%
  3. It’s too noisy 22%
  4. There is nowhere nice to take a quick break 23%
  5. Poor facilities – 18%
  6. It’s unwelcoming 13%

We can see that the lack of fresh air is the top response for office workers of what, negatively affects their day to day work life. With a lack of fresh air in the office, employees productivity levels can be affected, it can impede decision-making skills, make you feel fatigued and even make you feel drowsy. Natural lighting closely followed, which can also make a big difference in the workplace. It can determine employees overall experience in the workplace and impact employees work capabilities as well as affecting their eyesight. Working in a dark environment or one lit with fluorescent or unnaturally bright lighting can lead to a reduction of productivity levels, disrupt sleeping patterns and affect mindset.

Loud noises in or around the office are also a big factor towards impacting your day to day work. Loud noises can make you feel easily distracted and may lead to headaches or stress, while lots of loud conversation or machinery noise can also have an effect on productivity.

Nearly a quarter of office workers (23%) stated that they struggled to find a place in their workplace to have a quick break away from their desk, while many said there was an unwelcome feeling in the office. Participants noted that a lack of atmosphere in the office impacted their abilities and mindset while at work.

Poor facilities can lead employees to depression and inability to perform at their best. Lack of facilities can affect an employee’s perception of the work environment and reduce their focus.

What offices get wrong:

  • “Feels like it makes you spend too much time inside.”
  • “Too quiet and poor atmosphere.”
  • “Too hot in the summer and too cold in the winter.”
  • “Issues around hot-desking and how this impacts my mood.”

Some places do it right:

  • “I love my place of work, so has no negative effect on me.”

Tips on improving your office environment for better morale and productivity:

  • Choose office space which has natural light so the space isn’t too dark and then lighting which isn’t too bright.
  • Good ventilation helps- a good heating and air conditioning system helps keep fresh air circulating.
  • Ensure your employees have somewhere to take a break, a separate room away from desks or an area outside of the office environment.
  • Office plants can help regulate fresh natural scents for the room, which in turn can help improve employees mindsets and creativity.
  • Depending on the working environment you can reduce loud noises by choosing double glazing windows, quiet desktop machines, dedicated quiet spaces and rooms, noise-reducing flooring, installing sound insulation or adding wall partitions and cubicles which can cut down noise.

Commenting on the findings Nick Riesel, Founder at Free Office Finder said:

“We can see from the results, the simplest elements of natural lighting and fresh air, are deemed to be the biggest concerns for offices. These two actions should be carefully considered when searching and setting up your new office environment.”

He continued:

“Helping to boost productivity levels and achieve a healthy and positive mindset for employees is one of the fundamental jobs for business managers and owners to consider when building a happy and productive team. We have highlighted some changes that managers and owners can implement right away within the working environment. We’ve also highlighted some changes which may need more time to set up, such as installing sound insulation material in the walls or having noise-reduce flooring, but this all depends on the workplace.

Benefits of a serviced office

A serviced office will include all amenities such as; 

  • Reception for welcoming guests
  • Phone systems
  • Meeting room(s)
  • Printer(s)
  • Daily cleaning of the office
  • Refreshments such as; tea, coffee, water and snacks
  • Internet access
  • On-site management
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