Poor lighting is frequently cited as a common interior design mistake. It’s annoying in any room you’re in, but it can become especially problematic in an office setting, where you’re trying to focus and be productive. It’s no surprise that poor lighting is among the top complaints among office employees everywhere.
Lighting is an essential part of office design because, much like the layout, it has a strong impact on the staff’s comfort and productivity. Bad lighting can result in fatigue, eye strain, and headaches. It also influences how well people sleep at night, their ability to focus, and the decision-making process. In more extreme cases, poor lighting can even lead to accidents and injuries.
Below you’ll find three tips on how to improve lighting in your workspace, which will help make a better impression on both employees and clients.
Windows have long been considered prized possessions in any office space. Although they sometimes seem to be reserved only for executives, windows do much more than giving us a nice view. Natural light instantly makes an office look more welcoming. Getting enough natural light during the day helps you sleep better at night, boosting energy level and improving concentration. Since employees who get more exposure to natural light enjoy a better quality of life, they also report greater job satisfaction.
Natural light will also be better than any form of artificial lighting. First of all, it improves productivity and morale. Second of all, getting enough natural light means you can cut energy costs, so you have an additional financial incentive.
LEDs vs. Fluorescent Lights
Fluorescent tubes have long been a staple for office buildings because they’re cheap and can be easily installed on the ceiling to light large areas. However, they do present some problems that are hard to ignore. As time passes, they become dimmer, they flicker and create a buzzing noise. This means that the quality of light is inconsistent. The flicker and buzzing also make it hard for employees to focus on their work, so they’re far from the ideal choice.
LED lights are seen as the more expensive option, but long-term, they’re actually more economical since they last a lot longer and use less energy. They’re also much more comfortable for employees because the quality of light is more consistent.
The Appropriate Light for Every Task
Since the ceiling light has to be strong enough to illuminate the desks underneath, open-plan offices can easily become flooded with light leading to glare and overillumination, which is not only an inefficient use of energy, but it also has a negative impact on productivity.
Each area of the office space requires its own type of lighting that’s approaches for specific tasks. To avoid overillumination, lighting should be layered. You can reduce the light coming from the ceiling and valance it with ambient light, and provide employees with adjustable desk lights so they have more control and can adapt the lighting to their personal needs.