Working somewhere we are comfortable isn’t just more pleasant; researchers have found that it makes us more productive. If we’re happy in our working environment, we work harder, better and faster.
In this article, we explore how the workplace environment influences productivity. Including some hints and tips on how you can design the perfect workspace.
Workplace environment and productivity
We may be motivated by pay and the potential for career advancement, but our environment plays an integral part in our productivity and performance.
“Numerous studies have consistently demonstrated that characteristics of the physical office environment can have a significant effect on behaviour, perceptions and productivity of employees,” say academics.
The researchers were writing in 2011 when most of us were still trudging into the office every day. The Covid-19 pandemic has meant that more of us than ever before are working at home.
Changing our workplace environment
In 2020, 5.6 million of us were working at home, an increase of almost 50%. Even now, as restrictions are relaxed, home working (or hybrid working) is here to stay.
The CIPD has found that most of us enjoy homeworking, with more employees finding home working boosts productivity than those who don’t. The benefits don’t appear universal, with an Italian study finding that 39.2% of workers found home working was “less productive”.
Research suggests that those lucky enough to have the space to set up a dedicated workspace in their home are likely to be more productive. Unfortunately, for those of us who find working from the kitchen table – or even worse, from our armchairs or even beds, productivity is likely to take a hit.
Benefits of a dedicated workspace
A dedicated workspace doesn’t just improve productivity, but personal health too.
Many of the researchers in the Italian study reported suffering from significant health issues, such as lower back pain and neck pain. Some also reported increasing problems with their mental health.
Your employer has the same health and safety responsibilities to you wherever you choose to work, says the HSE. That means they have to ensure you have a working environment with a dedicated work area, suitable seating and space to work.
Having a dedicated workspace provides both physical and psychological distance between you and your work. This can help reduce stress and anxiety and provide a better work/life balance, says the BBC.
A dedicated workspace provides a safe, warm and welcoming environment that will boost productivity and improve performance.
There are no hard and fast rules for building a productive workspace, but here are some ideas:
- Get a dedicated desk and a proper chair
- Make good posture a priority with a health assessment
- Create some space to move around your area
- Invest in some plants to increase oxygen and improve the environment
- Work on the ergonomics, having everything you need in arms-reach
Not all of us are lucky enough to have the space in our houses to create a workspace, but we do have space outside that can be transformed into a dedicated workspace.
Working from a garden office
A workroom or garden room is a purpose-built space that we can configure to your requirements. Each workroom can be designed to improve productivity, providing space for a desk, a chair and everything you need to work better.
Access to a dedicated workspace is now affordable to more of us, with complete garden rooms available for less than £10,000. Affordable and attractive, a workroom is also an easy way to add value to your home, with Ideal Home estimating a garden room pays back 1.5 times its cost.
At Workroom, we create beautiful garden rooms from the best quality, sustainable materials. Learn about our range of garden rooms, including how you can order here.
We offer every customer the chance to see a garden room and experience the space for themselves. We can also discuss personalising your workroom, adding finishing touches and add-ons that give you pleasure while powering productivity.