How Your Office Space Affects Productivity

by Michelle Heatherly on Jan 31, 2017

It’s no secret that if your employees are unproductive, your business will suffer. However, good bosses know that productivity is not the sole responsibility of the employee. You can help your staff reach their potential by creating an office environment that benefits constructive work habits.

Here are a few things employers should take into consideration when setting up an office:


Lighting is probably the most important factor that affects employee productivity. Still, a recent study suggested that over 2/3 of all workers are unhappy with the lighting situation in their offices.

Bad lighting can have several negative effects on employees. It can cause eyestrain, headaches, drowsiness and even depression. A combination of both natural and artificial light is best. However, employers should try to incorporate as much natural light as possible. Offices with large amounts of natural light generally produce happier and healthier employees and experience less absenteeism.

Air Quality

Poor air quality can have a drastic effect on employee productivity. In fact, OSHA has estimated that poor air quality in office environments costs about $15 billion across all industries due to inefficient workers and sick leave.

Employers can take the following actions to increase productivity among employees:

  • Install air filters
  • Open windows or doors if possible
  • Put more plants around the office

Outdoor Views

Studies show that employees are up to 16% more productive when they have an outdoor view. Businesses that have offices overlooking landscaped areas, ponds, waterways or other natural scenes generally have happier and more productive workers.


In a poll conducted by CareerBuilder, it was discovered that about one-third of all workers surveyed were not comfortable with the temperature of their office. Offices that are too warm or too cold generally make people feel uncomfortable and unable to focus on their work. It is recommended that employers keep their offices at 69-71 degrees for maximum results.


Ergonomics plays an important role in employee engagement. Not only does it increase productivity, it also prevents injuries and fatigue.

Poorly designed workspaces can affect the hands, wrists, neck, back and other joints. Employers can provide the following amenities to increase productivity among employees:

  • Provide laptops or screen supports to ensure screens are positioned correctly
  • Footrests when feet cannot rest on the ground naturally
  • Palm rests to ensure hand, wrist and forearm are properly aligned


Noise level is one of the biggest workplace distractions and also the most common reason for productivity losses. Some people work better with large amounts of background noise, some with a little, and some with none. Try creating a space free from distractions so that your employees can have a quiet place to work if need be.

Clutter can also be distracting, so try to space furniture out so it doesn’t look disorganized. Not only will this help your employees be more productive, it will help them relax and feel less stressed.

Creating a Productive Office Space

These are just a few things that many offices take into consideration. There is no universal solution that will work for all businesses. Getting to know your employees and their work habits will give you a better understanding of how you can create a workspace that fosters creative and productive output.

Michelle Heatherly

Michelle Heatherly

Michelle Heatherly is the Director of Marketing, Operations & Strategic Development for Demetree Global. She is committed to providing the highest level of service possible and ensuring customers have an excellent experience with Demetree Global.