There has been a great deal written in recent years about how the style of a workplace can have either a positive or negative impact on the wellness and productivity of the people that work there. While discussions on the subject continue, the office fit-out market is booming as more and more company bosses become aware that workplace design really does matter as attractive, ambitious and well-planned workspaces help to attract and importantly, retain, the best talent.
It has been proven that the design of the workplace can have a real impact on staff morale and well being and can impact their level of productivity. Companies who value their employees and who want to get the best from them are doing their best to ensure that each person has adequate space and natural light in a congenial work environment. They also favour workspaces that have been cleverly designed to encourage interaction between staff members as this can lead to many great new ideas.
Workplace requirements differ from one company to another and how the available space is utilised varies tremendously too. Often when moving into a workspace, there is an element of compromise as the building was not purpose-built for the job it must do. Specialist companies like Think Contracts can really make the difference when planning an office fit-out as they can ensure that the commercial space is transformed to create a workplace that meets the individual needs of the company.
Recent surveys reveal why…
In the last few years, the office refit market has been booming. The London Crane Survey by Deloitte (2017) found that office fit-outs outnumbered new builds by a ratio of more than two to one. Another poll taken in the same year by Office Genie confirmed that the work environment really matters and that 45% of those polled felt that their workplace lacked good collaborative space and a further 20% felt that their work environment actually hindered their work.
Other interesting statistics from the same poll revealed that 74% of staff felt that their workplace did not encourage relaxation and 54% found that their workplace lacked private spaces. Interestingly, 45% felt that their workplace failed to encourage collaborative work. Another negative that has also been reported in the press in recent years, is that a number of employees are now experiencing loneliness in their work environment.
An office fit-out – an investment in staff
With the results from such polls providing an insight into how employees feel about their workplace, many company directors are viewing an office fit-out as a good investment for their members of staff. Usually, the building costs 10-15% of a company’s annual budget, whilst its staff cost 70-80% so it does make sense to invest in creating a work environment that is conducive to creating an upbeat feeling in staff members and encourages increased productivity.
A quality refurbishment of the workspace is ideal if it is looking dated or proving less than practical and a fit-out will certainly be like a breath of fresh air in the space that with modern design and facilities will revitalise staff members – encouraging them to reach their full potential and ensuring that the building maintains its value too..
Current design ideas
There are changing trends of course in workplace designs and these too can make a fit-out sensible if your premises are older or your company has grown in size. In the past, large open-plan offices were the vogue, but many members of staff have found that the added noise levels and decreased privacy can prove challenging. Research has found that light, bright funky designs with good communal areas are proving both attractive and popular and are improving staff retention figures.
Current design ideas incorporate a variety of work areas that include conventional desks, booths and flexible work areas for when several members of staff are working together – a variety of smaller workspaces within the whole, ensure there is something for everyone. Relaxing together is important and many of the exciting new designs feature a central hub where people can get together to share a coffee, lunch or ideas.
Introducing comfort to the workplace
In the past, offices were full of bright lights and hard, sterile looking surfaces but not anymore as designers are introducing comfort with soft carpets, home-like seating, artwork and even colourful scatter cushions! Many designers bring the outdoors inside by introducing good natural lighting, large leafy plants and plenty of natural elements in their designs. These have all been found to make employees feel happier and healthier.
A challenge for designers
These changing ideas do increase the pressure on designers who are having to create more elaborate plans to suit the company’s staff but are also needing to ensure that their designs embrace the latest technology and are as sustainable as possible. Company bosses are wanting the designs to be distinctive and different as they can help portray the company’s ethos and branding.
When designers are working on designs for an office or commercial fit-out they do have other challenges too as they must also look at the bad points in a building and problems in the original workspace layout and find really good solutions.
Introducing Think Contracts
To many, the idea of trying to coordinate a re-fit for their commercial space is daunting – especially when coupled with a full day’s work! Luckily help is at hand, provided by such companies as Think Contracts. As respected interior fitout specialists company, we will work with your surveyors and design team, to ensure all work is project managed and finished by professionals to the highest standards.
The name Think Contracts is synonymous with the highest quality in every aspect and our staff are perfectionists with a keen eye for detail. They pride themselves on the quality of their work and the fact that it is always delivered on time…and on budget….