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Office Space Design Features

Decent human office space is sensitive to the flexibility and productivity of employees. Office design can foster collaboration, productivity and creativity. Design can range from texture and colour to closed doors. The occupant of the space should be happy while working.

According to Ethonomics: Designing for the Principles of the Modern Workplace, a well-designed office space should, “explore new ways to create healthy, inspiring, and suitable places in which people can feel good where they are and what they do.”

Suitable office space should minimise the predominance of technology as much as possible. Besides, the office space should not be overly large. Furthermore, the warmth of colour you use to paint cubicles should not be cool. Avoid using dull shades like beige or grey. Also, a fluorescent bulb should not light up a human office.

A decent office space enhances collaboration and engagement
Above: A decent office space enables engagement and collaboration

Human office users should move without difficulty within the office. Since we would like our working environments to be free from distractive noise, it should not be overly hermetic.

I have compiled five human office space design features that make the environment conducive to work. Let us have a look

1. Flexible Movement

Today’s nature of work glues us to our seats for long periods. This is unfortunate because our bodies have biologically adapted to the motion. The tendency to move is in our genes. We can accomplish most of what our ancestors accomplished by moving just by the click of a mouse.

Thus, a human office space should give our bodies the opportunity to move, allowing us the flexibility of sitting and standing while working. This flexibility will enhance our alertness, engagement with work and health. Thus, in turn, you will be less likely to interact negatively with your co-workers.

You are less likely to be resentful, angry or cross. Your body will release feel-good endorphins without having to exercise. Biomechanists recommend that you should work while standing 25% and moving 75% of the time. Therefore, ensure you optimise your office for the following:

  • Climbing office staircase
  • Stretching the body
  • Talking while pacing and organising your desk
  • Walking around the meeting table while addressing people
  • Strolling from one office to another

2. Outdoor Feel

Our bodies tend to respond to multiple external stimuli, which affect health, well-being and functioning of humans. Ensure that there is enough natural daylight and scenery. This can go a long way in reducing mental stress and increasing concentration.

Therefore, natural daylight prevents eye strain, and potted plants bolster the quality of air and reduce stress. Be sure to adopt a biophilic design to restore the connection of office space with nature. You can insert floor-to-ceiling windows. Alternatively, you can insert windows, which open rhythmically with the pattern of nature.

3. Blend Spaces

Open plan offices are no longer the best ideas for maximising happiness and increasing engagement. Neighbouring activities outside can detract people from their work, leading to low productivity. Instead, blend different:

  • Multilevel offices;
  • Open spaces with hermetic spaces;
  • Break rooms with conference rooms; and
  • Lounges with soft seating sections.
    Multipurpose office space with lounge
    Above: A multipurpose office space with lounge

4. Texture and Colour

Reduce noise from the office because it tends to be distractive. Recent research has indicated that employees are working in spaces without doors, such as cubicles, experience frequent disruptions. Hence, they are highly likely to err and to become worn out more easily than those working behind closed doors. Thus, it advisable to equip the office with “layer in spaces” to make it easy for an employee to shift tasks.

Hence, it is good to use signage such as “No Interruption”, “Quiet Please”, or “Tech-free Zone” to reduce inflexibility. Lastly, employ soft surfaces of work to elicit a response of refreshment and engagement. Suitably, texture stone and wood to enhance the smooth sensory experience.

Human office design is a matter of psychology. Thus, it should be people-centred. Ensure that the workplace is free of noise and disruptions and enough natural daylight enters.

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