September 2, 2014
Office planting improves workers’ quality of life and productivity finds study
Claims by office designers and suppliers that office planting has wider health benefits for occupiers than just making the place look more attractive have been given a boost in a new academic study which provides some empirical evidence. In the first field study of its kind, researchers found enriching a ‘lean’ office with plants could increase productivity by as much as 15 per cent. The study, which involved academics from the University of Exeter; the University of Groningen in The Netherlands, and the University of Queensland, Australia examined the impact of ‘lean’ and ‘green’ offices on staff’s perceptions of air quality, concentration, and workplace satisfaction, and monitored productivity levels over subsequent months in two large commercial offices in the UK and The Netherlands. It concludes that ‘green’ offices with plants make staff happier and more productive than ‘lean’ designs stripped of greenery. More →
May 13, 2014
Workplace design, Facebook likes and the need of companies to be your friend
by Mark Eltringham • Comment, Environment, Facilities management, Workplace design
Companies put an awful lot of time and money into getting people to like them on social media these days. While it would be easy to see the like button on Facebook as the primary conduit for this corporate neediness, but it cuts across many aspects of the ways in which companies work, including their relationships with employees and the ways in which they develop new forms of workplace design and management. This is most evident in the tech palaces which are aimed at the same digital natives that firms habitually target with their online marketing, but the need to make customers and employees friends of the business cuts across a wide range of sectors. The workplace is yet another channel of communicating chumminess, and it offers many of the same challenges as social media.