Entrepreneurs: Upgrades in the office that can boost business
Your office is at the heart of your business and is something that should never be overlooked. As well as providing a nice space for you and your employees to work from, it also makes a good impression on customers and clients. If yours isn’t up to scratch, here are a few of the ways you can improve things.
Improve the decor
One of the quickest and easiest ways to improve the look of your office is to change the decor. A coat of paint (light neutrals will make it look clean and spacious) hardwearing carpets and green living plants are all a good choice. Plants have been shown to boost productivity, plus they’re an unfussy and professional way to decorate.
Kit out your conference room
Does your business hold regular meetings, presentations and conferences? If so, you will have clients and customers coming to your office. For this reason, your conference rooms should be up to scratch with comfortable seating and a good sized screen with a projector. A lectern at the front allows the person holding the meeting to stay organised.
Make it eco-friendly
We all know we should be doing our bit for the environment. At home we recycle, compost, use energy efficient bulbs. We prevent wasting water and electricity and spend money on upgrades to reduce our waste. However reducing our carbon footprint isn’t something that’s only limited to our houses, we can take steps to do this at work too. This can be done by reducing paper and doing more online- emailing receipts and statements is one example.
Cutting down on plastics such as disposable pens and recycling anything that can be recycled- it all helps and is something every office in the world should be aiming to do. Instead of leaving computers on standby, switch them off properly when they’re not in use. Instead of throwing out all of our business waste to go to landfill, we could separate it to be recycled. Every small thing you do adds up to make a huge difference, even more so when businesses across the world get involved. Set a good example for your company.
Communal areas for breaks
If your workers don’t have somewhere they can sit on their breaks, they may be forced to go off-site each day. Not only is this annoying for them but it could cost you in time and money where they return a little late- even the odd minute here and there adds up. You could put together a space where they can sit and relax, some comfortable chairs or some table and chairs, a coffee machine and even a vending machine will provide them with the basics and is sure to be appreciated. In larger spaces, a kitchenette and dining area, or even a canteen would be a good option especially if you have more employees. Add a pool table or games machine would encourage workers to socialise too.
Change the layout
As well as the decor, the layout of the office makes a bigger difference than what you might realise. One thing you can do is move desks near to windows which mean workers get the benefit of natural light. This is has been shown to be a mood booster and can even improve productivity. The layout should also make sense for your business, for example, many companies will benefit from some single desks and some larger collaborative areas for group work. The office should never be too crowded, your employees should easily be able to move around easily and conveniently. Before purchasing or bringing furniture in, spend some time planning your layout and set up in a way that suits the space as well as your business.
Think about health and safety
Admittedly, offices are some of the safest places to work. There are no heavy machines, vehicles or chemicals that could pose a problem. However, workplace safety is still important. Things like slips, trips and falls can all be problematic, so you need to be making sure you’re following the law. Wet floor signs should be put down near spills or after mopping. Loose carpets should be
Keep employees comfortable
An office might be a very safe place to work, but it’s not completely foolproof. Neck, back and eye strain are injuries can all occur due to being in a seated position all day, and can lead to unhappy employees as well as lost days because of time off. If you make sure every employee has an ergonomically designed desk and chair this will prevent these kinds of injuries.
Coloured overlays on monitors can be useful for certain people as they can help to prevent eye strain and migraines. You could always have them as an option in the office if workers want to use them.
Consider a new office building
Finally, if your current space is all wrong and no improvements will help, consider a new building entirely. Research what kinds of spaces are available to rent or buy locally to you and make a list of the types of features you want.
It could be something with fantastic views, floor to ceiling windows or the ideal location. If your business relies on foot traffic, for example, it could be worth paying more for a central location. If not you could go further out to get more for your money.
Consider how accessible it is for clients and your staff to get to by road, bus or train though if you want to go further out. You could even look into facility management for smart buildings, getting your office fully connected will future proof your company and can give you an incredible advantage.
If your current office space isn’t up to scratch, try implementing a few of these changes. You’re bound to see improved productivity and better business, and if you’ve been stalling with customers or profits recently this could get the ball rolling again.
What do you do as a business owner to keep your office at its best?.