January 23, 2017

Improve worker wellbeing with better office designs

News Article

The health of employees is being put at risk by “toxic workplaces” because companies are failing to properly address issues linked to the physical work environment.

According to professional engineering, consulting and project management services firm AECOM, toxic workplaces are due in part to poor workplace design, which can lead topoor productivity, long-term sickness and staff retention.

Although most responsible companies understand the importance of keeping their employees safe, the same emphasis is not necessarily given to wellness.

AECOM warns that organisations that fail to prioritise employee wellness and design their workplaces accordingly will lose talent and potentially face bottom-line repercussions.

Nicola Gillen, global practice lead of strategy at AECOM, said: “The link between employee well-being and the built environment must not be overlooked in the drive to increase efficiency and the bottom line.

“Redesigning and reimagining the workplace to better support how work is done now and in the future not only enhances well-being, it also improves performance and productivity. With four generations occupying the same space, it is important the physical environment meets their different working styles.”

Lara Murray, an Associate and employment and health safety legal expert with Palmers, said: “It has been estimated that around 9.9 million working days were lost in 2014/15 as a result of work-related stress, depression or anxiety. This underlines how employee happiness and general wellbeing – or a lack of it – can have a major, direct impact on business productivity.

“Improvements to the physical environment, even minor adjustments, can often help companies to create work spaces and a corporate culture which supports wellness, reduces workplace stress and ultimately leads to less sick days.”

For more information on Palmers for range of employment services, please contact us.