Lighting is a crucial aspect of any indoor space. Naturally, it is even more important in an office setting where people require adequate lighting to concentrate and perform. While most managers overlook lighting, it serves a much more important function than just enhancing the aesthetic appeal of a space. Lighting can affect employee productivity.
Research shows that certain types of lighting can activate the body’s circadian rhythm, leading to an increased desire to sleep or relax. Naturally, such lights are not conducive in an office environment. Let’s look at the various effects lighting may have on a person.
Artificial lighting is commonly used in indoor spaces to brighten up your workplace. Since the sunlight is present only for a limited number of hours, artificial lighting is almost unavoidable. When thinking of lighting ideas, it is important to consider the number of computers used inside. This is important as the more computers that are used, the more brightness you'd have. Then you need to devise a lighting plan following this consideration to have an appropriate light source that relieves the burden on the employees’ eyes.
Primarily, there are two kinds of artificial lighting.
According to environmental experts, dim light can exert strain on the eyes, leading to dizziness, headaches, and consequently a reduced ability to concentrate on the work at hand. Working under dim light for a considerable time can also lead to eye issues, which will only further hamper the productivity of employees, at least for the time being.
You must have noticed that spas often use dim lighting because it has a relaxing effect on people, reducing focus and inducing drowsiness. When you’re in an office, that’s the last feeling you want to evoke in your employees!
In an attempt to create adequate lighting, many offices end up making their space a little too bright. This fluorescent lighting can be the precursor to headaches and migraines in employees, which ultimately adversely affects their productivity at work. It also causes unnecessary eye strain.
Experts suggest that to boost employee productivity with optimum lighting, there should be a balance between dim and bright light and, of course, making use of natural light as much as we can.
What most offices don’t know and don’t realize is that natural lighting is far superior to artificial light. So, offices should make use of it whenever they can! A Harvard Study showed that a whopping 78% of employees stated that natural lighting improved their wellbeing and 70% reported that it enhanced their work performance.
Workplaces that use more natural lighting reported happier spaces, reduced absenteeism, fewer medical leaves, and increased productivity.
The correct lighting plan should include a healthy amalgamation of natural and artificial lighting, with a balance between dim and bright lighting to correctly brighten up your workplace.
Lighting Ideas For Your Workplace
There are several ways in which you can create a well-lit space for your employees or yourself at home with ongoing work from home.
Place Your Desk By The Window
When it comes to lighting, you should make use of natural lighting as much as possible. This idea works especially well if you are currently working from home. If you’re thinking of how to focus on work again when you’re just not into it, you should first and foremost invest in a good desk. Next, place this desk by the window where it has access to as much natural light as possible.
If you’re looking for a desk to boost productivity, you should look into the latest fad in the market: the standing desk. There are many reasons why offices buy standing desks:
- Sitting all day can pose a risk of obesity. Standing desks allow you to remain active and avoid that tummy bulge from slouching all day.
- A study showed that standing for 180 minutes after lunch can reduce blood sugar spikes by a considerable 43% in comparison to sitting for the same time.
- Sitting at a desk can strain your back and lead to back problems. Standing desks allow you to stretch your back, improve your posture and steer clear of backaches.
- Standing desks also ensure your mind stays alert throughout, naturally boosting concentration towards the work at hand.
Offices are gradually working towards ergonomic office products and environments. This is why along with standing desks, you should also consider the placement.
Setting the standing desk by the window ensures it catches daylight, which acts as a natural mood booster. Sunlight is known to release the hormone Serotonin, which is associated with improving mood and increasing focus. With that, the office or workplace at home would be well-lit and this utilizing daylight will also help you save on utility bills.
Change the Color and Temperature As the Sun Goes Down
Any office should have a combination of both white and yellow light. As a general rule, warmer, yellow, and orange lights are better for relaxing while brighter, cooler blue and white lights are more conducive to waking up and enhancing concentration.
This is why white lights should be switched on during the early hours of the day when employees come to work and should be switched to warmer lights during the end to help employees unwind.
This combination of lights and temperatures will help create the right atmosphere at your workplace. Moreover, the white light will brighten up the working space and allow people to focus more as they work during the morning, which is the most important time bracket for getting work done.
Keep Lampshades On Lamps on Office Desks
While most offices have overhead lighting, it can get overbearing at times. A better way to brighten up your workplace would be to diffuse the ambient light to light up your workspace. This is why lampshades should be used on lamps to scatter the light and create a nice illumination. Harsh light can do more harm than good, and often cause strain to people’s eyes with the computer’s bright light as well.
With lampshades, you can ensure that there is no undue glare and contrast that will only strain your employees’ eyes. Indirect lighting is much better than direct lighting, which may wake your employees up but will cause unnecessary strain and potentially lead to eye problems.
Use Lighting Suitable For Every Task
In today’s day and age, there is no one-size-fits-all approach, even when it comes to office lighting. In this modern workspace, you need to have flexible lighting to suit the needs of every person working there. While managers may dismiss this, they need to realize that offices are taking employee needs and convenience into consideration more than ever.
The FlexiSpot all-in-one standing desk is a popular choice in many workspaces for the versatility it offers to users. This innovative design is packed with features that relay convenience to employees, whether it’s the spacious storage space, convenient USB charging, or height controls to suit yourself.
Similarly, offices also need modern lighting solutions in offices that cater to the employees’ requirements. The general office lighting should be layered with ambient and task lighting so each employee has a greater degree of control as to how lit their work area is. For example, each employee can have a lamp placed on their standing desk for extra light when need be. The adjustable height of the all-in-one standing desk makes this much easier.
Use Different Lighting For Different Zones
You can’t use one constant lighting type for the entire office space. Lighting should be used as a tool to highlight different functions of different areas. Oversized pendant lights can be used for conference rooms where there is no need for ambient lighting. Spotlights can be used to illuminate corridors to allow people to easily navigate their way. Low and dim lighting should be used in booths to create and maintain an element of privacy while quirky and decorative lighting can be used to create a relaxing mood in lounges and smoking areas.
Final Word-Lighting Matters!
Lighting is an indispensable tool in offices and workspaces. It should be used according to the purpose of the specific company. Even within one organization, different colors, temperatures, and brightness of lighting should be used to help bring out the function they are meant to perform.
With a greater emphasis on modern workspaces, employees should have the freedom and flexibility to work at their own pace. This is possible with FlexiSpot office products and ambient lighting to create a well-lit office space that suits every employee working there. With these simple tips, you’ll find a drastic change in your employee motivation and productivity.