The cubicle is dead, and no one is mourning the passing of the stuffy corporate workplace. Studies show that changing your office setup can contribute to workplace innovation and employee retention, and can help create a company culture that supports productivity and collaboration. One study found that a well-designed office helps workers focus, increasing productivity by 20 percent.
Technology in the Workplace
Smart technology is innovating the office space, and smart tech can really help to reduce a company’s carbon footprint. Smart lighting turns itself off when no one is in the room, while smart thermostats turn down heating and cooling systems when employees leave. Further, heating and cooling can be personalized to zones, so everyone can feel comfortable in their work areas.
Access Control Technology
Companies must create a workplace that is secure for employees and their sensitive data. Installing a remote access system means your employees can access the premises through a hands-free app on their mobile device. Aside from the convenience of never getting locked out again, access control systems protect employees and companies from the vulnerability of lost keys or FOBs that stop working. You get real-time updates when people access the building, and you can grant or revoke access from anywhere.
Cloud-based remote access systems provide greater security through more robust cloud architecture that is constantly updated against hacking. This also bypasses the vulnerability and cost of in-house servers and continues to work when your internet is down.
In the Zone
Promoting innovation in the workplace can be achieved by creating different zones. One reason employees traditionally gather around the water cooler is because they need a place to exchange ideas as well as move around and stretch after hours at the computer.
Studies show that standing and walking encourages creativity, so standing desks or tables in a social area give people a place to meet where they aren’t disturbing other workers. Creating social areas, meeting rooms and working spaces caters to all your employee’s needs and improves workplace satisfaction.
Let Nature In
While you’re modernizing your office with smart technology, you need to also incorporate more aspects from nature. In a recent study, respondents picked natural light and views as number one on their office space wish list. A study at Cornell found that workers who had access to natural light saw an 84 percent drop in headaches, eye strain and blurred vision.
Office plants are also a hit, as they reduce stress and anxiety, improve the quality of air by absorbing volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and reduce noise, increasing productivity and creativity.
Fresh air is a must in every office. When the same air is circulated through tightly sealed buildings, the health and productivity of workers suffer. Air that is toxic can affect worker’s health and cause headaches and fatigue. Air filters and proper ventilation help to improve air quality, while cutting down on chemical cleaners and toxic building materials will help to reduce VOCs.
Modern workplaces are a delicate balance of smart technology and Mother Nature. Bringing in plants, sunshine and fresh air helps to improve health and well-being, while modern workplace designs improve creativity and productivity.