From developing comprehensive wellness programmes to implementing high-end task management software, companies are taking significant strides to boost employee wellbeing and productivity.
While there is a huge amount of merit in the above, many companies still fail to realise the important role something as simple as office lighting can play in managing employee welfare and performance.
In this article, we will examine just how crucial having the right office lighting can be and bring you some of our best practice advice for bringing your office up to standard.
The Impact Office Lighting Can Have on Employee Wellbeing & Productivity
The workplace is where employees spend a large portion of their time. Thus, it is imperative that they are comfortable.
Investing in the right lighting can go a long way towards providing this comfort.
Here’s the difference good quality lighting can make to your workplace.
1. Improved Employee Wellbeing
Harsh or poor lighting can have an adverse effect on the health and morale of staff. Here are some of the negative consequences that can be incurred from prolonged exposure to poor lighting.
- Migraines and Headaches
- Depression / Low Mood
- Eye Strain
- Decreased Productivity
- Stress and Anxiety
Migraine alone is said to cost the UK over £8 Billion per year in lost productivity.
On the contrary, the right office lighting can not only prevent the likes of headaches and eye strain but also energise staff.
For instance, many smart LED lighting solutions offer the ability to mimic the pattern of natural light over the course of the day. This is extremely helpful as lighting is said to directly affect the body’s circadian rhythm.
Circadian lighting design works in tandem with our body’s internal clocks, synchronising with the natural lighting cycle.
This serves to boost employee comfort and create a visual environment that is much healthier for our eyes.
2. Heightened Productivity
Exposure to harsh or unfavourable lighting conditions for 8 or so hours a day can drastically lower an employee’s mood.
The correlation between mood and productivity is distinct with studies revealing that happiness causes a 12% increase in productivity.
Optimising your lighting for employee comfort can also help negate the effects of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).
SAD is a condition in which a person’s morale is significantly reduced by the low levels of light experienced in winter. Its symptoms include losing interest in everyday activities thus, limiting its sufferers’ effectiveness at work.
3. Energy Efficient / Eco-Friendly
On a different note, a switch to more energy-efficient, eco-friendly LED lighting could motivate employees who appreciate their company making an effort to lessen their impact on the environment.
A recent report in the UK revealed that 65% of people are more likely to work for a company with strong environmental policies.
Upgrading to LED lighting can help a company meet its sustainability objectives as well as make long-term cost savings thanks to its greater energy efficiency.
How to Achieve the Optimum Office Environment Through Light
Now that you have a greater understanding of how office lighting can harm or revitalise your team, let’s explore in more detail some recommendations for improving your office environment.
1. Upgrade to LED Lighting
Upgrading to LED lighting is a great investment for any business and will have you and your employees well on the way to reaping the benefits discussed earlier.
LEDs have been found to decrease depression and improve mood, energy, and alertness.
It does not have to be an expensive project to carry out either. Asides from the long-term cost-savings that will be borne out of its energy efficiency, there are a number of grants and schemes available that will help you to reduce or offset the high initial investments.
We recommend that you visit SEAI.ie and discover your company’s eligibility for its wide range of energy efficiency grants.
Failing grant eligibility, the total cost of such upgrades can be deducted as a tax write-off in the first year, courtesy of the Accelerated Capital Allowance (ACA) scheme.
As for carrying out the upgrades themselves, we have outlined some key steps you should take.
- Conduct an energy audit on your business to determine how much of an upgrade is required to bring your business up to energy standards
- Use your audit data to determine the appropriate LED lighting system and budget for your business
- Apply for the grants and schemes discussed above
- Simplify the process of upgrading by working with a commercial lighting partner
2. Make the Most out of Natural Light
As brilliant as