Cool charcoal grey office space with canary yellow arm chair at the left, yellow desk chair and yellow pictures on the wall.

What does your dream office look like?

28 Aug 2018

Without an innovative office, companies cannot expect to be considered innovative, according to a new study.

In today’s world, it’s extremely important that companies are seen to be innovative. Companies must be forward-thinking in their outputs, and therefore they need to be forward-thinking in their workplaces.

Why? Because not only will they need to attract top talent in order to deliver the best experience, products and services possible, but they need to encourage innovation at every level in order to retain that talent.

The latest Capital One Work Environment Survey found that the vast majority of employees believe companies can’t encourage innovation unless their workplace environment is innovative.

The survey asked 3,500 full-time office professionals to share their thoughts about the impact of workplace design and employee experience on their satisfaction, creativity and productivity at work.

The survey found that 85pc of employees believe that flexible office design is critical to important. This proves that the importance of workplace design isn’t just a trend – indeed, it has been growing steadily for a number of years.

Additionally, two-thirds of employees said that office design was as important, if not more important, than office location.

However, the results also compared what employees want in office design versus what employers actually offer and, sadly, they don’t match up. In fact, nearly one in three employers offer none of the amenities that employees expect.

The ideal office

So, what exactly do employees want if they could design the perfect workspace?

Above anything else, 57pc of employees rated natural light as an important aspect of office design, and this desire has proven benefits.

According to a study earlier this year, workers in daylit office environments reported an 84pc drop in symptoms of eye strain, headaches and blurred vision. Optimising the amount of natural light in an office can improve health and wellness among workers, leading to more productive staff.

Easily configurable furniture came second, with 37pc of employees adding it to the list, while artwork was third at 36pc. The survey also showed that 80pc of respondents said they are more productive when they move to a different room or environment while working.

Bold colours and spaces for relaxation tied, with 25pc of employees putting each one down as part of their perfect office. The psychological effects of colour have been studied and stood by for years, so the desire for bold colours in an office space is not surprising.

While there are plenty of studies that could help any employer pick the best colour scheme for their workplace, blues and greens are always strong contenders because of their calming effects. In fact, green has also been proven to reduce eye strain and anxiety.

Jenny Darmody
By Jenny Darmody

Jenny Darmody became the editor of Silicon Republic in 2023, having worked as the deputy editor since February 2020. When she’s not writing about the science and tech industry, she’s writing short stories and attempting novels. She continuously buys more books than she can read in a lifetime and pretty stationery is her kryptonite. She also believes seagulls to be the root of all evil and her baking is the stuff of legends.

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