If you want to make employees more productive and happier to be working for your startup, office design is key. Everything from the decorations to the desks not only affect employee satisfaction, but your bottom line. Here are three ways to make your office a more welcoming place to work so that your team enjoys producing great results for your business.
1. Bring Home to the Office
Working from home, even at least part of the time, is increasing at a rapid rate. This puts pressure on offices to deliver an environment that is just as comfortable to work in as home is.
According to GlobalWorkplaceAnalytics.com, the telecommuter population is outgrowing the overall employee population — up to one-fourth of workers telework at some frequency. As work and home lives blend, one of the ways you can make coming into the office a more pleasurable experience is to offer home comforts. These may include:
- A kitchen that includes stocked coffee
- A comfortable lounge area for breaks
- Gym equipment or exercise balls that can be used as seats
- Standing or flexible desks that discourage a sedentary lifestyle
Fortune reports that one of the top office design trends today is to create spaces that enable 24/7 work. Since technology enables always-on productivity, workers are embracing flexible hours that provide a better work-life balance. If you offer night or early morning hours to employees, be sure to install a security camera system to increase a sense of safety and make employees feel confident when working during extended hours.
2. Make the Space Flexible
Research by office furniture manufacturer Steelcase found that engaged employees often have control over where and how they work, including access to privacy. Home and office furniture manufacturer Herman Miller offers 10 ideal office settings created to empower choice and foster community, including private areas, “hive” areas that offer an open feel for harmonious individual project work and a “clubhouse” for collaborative group projects.
Forbes says this “work casual” type of environment that houses a variety of work space designs has been popularized by millennials, who are now the largest cohort in the workforce today, according to Pew Research Center. Instead of chaining your employees to a set desk or cubicle, offering them multiple workspace options can foster focus, collaboration and productivity.
3. Add Some Personality
CanvasPop found employees who are able to choose their own décor are 30 percent more productive and have less health complaints than those who don’t. Make office decorating a team effort by asking your staff for input in office decorations and furniture, especially in areas like break rooms or lunch spaces. Other ways to boost morale through decorations include:
- Adding art to the space
- Bringing plant life indoors
- Displaying your company mission statement in an artistic way
- Using your startup’s hero colors throughout the office design to reinforce the company culture
You can also encourage employees to bring in photos from home for their personal work spaces or to add to a community board, which helps team members learn more about each other.
Create a Better Office for Higher Employee Engagement
By creating an office environment that enables employees to enjoy their work more, productivity increases. Foster a better work-life balance through your office set-up, create a safe and personality-filled environment and give employees options ranging from the types of desks they use to where in the office they work. They’ll appreciate that they have more control in their work environment, which can increase loyalty and efficiency for your business. Ideas on employee engagement.