First impressions matter- whether you like it or not, people often judge your office space on the basis of its appearance. The look and feel of your office space plays a crucial role in not just hiring and retaining employees but also in creating an excellent impression on your clients. According to an HBR study, your office décor determines about 25% of your employee engagement and productivity. As most employees spend at least 9 to 10 hours at work every day, it is the responsibility of the employers to provide them a comfortable and motivating work environment. Furnishing your office space can pose to be a tedious job as it requires considerable planning and investment.
Here are some things you should keep in mind while furnishing your workspace:
1. Plan The Space
Before you commencing purchasing and renovating your office space, make a plan. This should include the changes you wish to make and the estimated cost. Do you hire an interior designer or do it on your own? Does your office space come with a planner who can assist? Arranging your office space can be a time-consuming affair. You will also need to keep in mind the individual requirements of your employees along with keeping your office space accessible to everyone.
2. Make comfort your priority:
Let’s focus on the basics- desks and chairs. Desks and chairs are the most used pieces of furniture in every office, as everyone spends most of their time sitting on them. Therefore, as a rule of thumb, it is imperative to ensure that the desks and chairs you choose are comfortable and convenient. While choosing a desk, ensure that they are big enough to hold files, laptops, and stationery. The desks should be of a uniform and standard height to accommodate the nature of work and the person working on it. Choosing desks with drawers and lockers can be very convenient for employees as it helps them keep their personal belongings. However, while choosing a chair ensure that they are properly cushioned and comes with an armrest and a backrest.
3. Quality over price
Just as in your business, you work to deliver quality work for your clients, a similar expectation remains amongst your employee when it comes to their office space. A Good quality furnished office will last long even if it falls expensive in the short term. Think of purchasing quality furniture as an investment than an expense. A shoddy, poor quality desk, chair, or file cabinet will start falling apart within a short time of use. Office furniture is meant to withstand heavy-duty usage. If budget is an issue, consider purchasing second-hand yet quality furniture. The comfort of your employees should be of paramount importance.
4. Add a personal touch
A stylish office can send a strong and positive message to your employees and clients. But a truly captivating and stylish office goes about in visualising the company’s mission statement with its furnishings. Let your office reflect your personality. Allow your office space to reflect your values and vision with décor that accentuates on your philosophies. Bright, vibrant wall painting can be a welcoming presence. Portraits of people you admire, displaying artifacts and curios, personalised space for your employees gives a unique blend to the mundane office space that communicates the dynamic values of you and your business.
5. Strive to create a serene environment
An office is a hectic space brimming with energy and ideas. It can also be an overwhelming space for some of your team members. As an employer, it is your responsibility to create a calm environment. The office ambiance plays a very crucial impact on your employees. A cluttered, noisy space with bad lighting, bare walls, and no windows can be not only unproductive but also dull. Part of your office furnishing designs and it should include space to allow natural light, ventilation, a zone where your employees can de-stress. Keeping plants can also have a productive impact as it allows a sense of tranquillity along with beautifying the space.
6. Invest to keep things fun
Gone are the days when an office was all work and no play. Today, employees check out the office culture too before making a final call to work for your business. We are creatures of habit yet become easily bored with the mundane and monotonous work. Creating a space within your office where your employees can de-stress will enhance their productivity. Investing in ping-pong and pool tables, massage chairs, the gym can improve the motivation of your team.
7. Get tech support
As you’re improving the furnishings around your office, set up a meeting with your IT and engineering team to configure the plug points and jacks for your employees to maximise the utility of your office space. Consider where you will set up your office printer, wifi routers, projectors, and screens which can be accessed easily but at the same time not coming in anybody’s way.
8. Employee feedback
According to HBR, a workplace that included employees in the decision making of setting up their individual workspace reported having higher job satisfaction. Allowing your employees to set up their space with the type of furniture they want to create a shared floor space can have added benefit for your business with improved productivity and realising your brand culture.
9. Create open space
When creating your office space, keep in mind to leave some room to move. Use décor that enhances your office space. For instance, if you have a small office space, but wish to create rooms, use glass partitions instead of opaque curtains as it will create a visual breathing space. Also depending on your space, creating an outdoor open and green space goes a long way to de-stress your employees.
10. Space to grow
You will want your business to grow, and therefore, when furnishing your office space keep in mind about the future when you may have to increase your team size. Your office space might remain the same but you will need to create an environment that will allow you to add more furniture and furnishing with a growing business and employees.
Furnishing your office goes beyond buying furniture and filling up space. It is about creating an elegant and vibrant ambiance. The manner in which you furnish your office can embody your principles and personality. Keep it consistent, warm, and welcoming.