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How Offices Can Transform As ‘Wellbeing Spaces’ For Employees
Office design and architecture solutions to help employees thrive
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Wellbeing, a commonly used term no longer pertains to physical health alone. Employee wellbeing, an increasingly visible concept in workplaces around the globe, now goes beyond the concept of health, and remains a key business imperative for companies worldwide.
According to the Gensler Workplace Index, due to the growing realization amongst millennials on workspace efficiency across the world, Indian companies are increasingly adapting to the concept where aspects such as employee engagement, productivity and more importantly, individual well-being and health play a significant role.
In the last 10 years, India has witnessed a tremendous transformation in the way businesses conduct themselves, the increased relevance of start-ups, employee engagement and the design and atmosphere of office spaces.
With an upward swing in the creation of co-working spaces, office workers require a workplace that is more than just a space to work out of, a space that defines their culture and as a subsequent result, enables their wellbeing.
Today, in new-age workspaces, noise seems to be one of the most significant factors impacting employee productivity and wellbeing.
Over the years, workspaces have developed from independent offices to open plan office layouts, mainly constituting of open cubicles or open work stations.While open plan office spaces are a great way for employees to collaborate, the acoustics of any workplace need to be well thought out as part of the initial design concept to prevent disruption in work flow.
According to a study conducted by the University of California, Berkeley, where 65,000 people from across continents were surveyed over the past decade, more than half of office workers were found to be dissatisfied with the level of “speech privacy” leading to disruption in their work. Research also indicates that almost 62 percent of office workers face difficulty in finding privacy and space at work.
In many cases, open plan offices miss out on consciously planning the right acoustics design.
In this regard, many leading companies in the infrastructure, architecture and design sectors are seeking smart, efficient and sustainable construction materials and methods.
Gypsum-based interior solutions entail acoustic properties that remain significant to improve noise levels and better employee productivity in workplaces.Made of high performance lightweight interior wall systems, gypsum-based drywalls can be set up three to four times faster than masonry walls and candeliver up to 70db+ of sound insulation levels, keeping excessive noise out of certain spaces.
Personal space and rest
As they are extremely easy to install, gypsum-based drywallscan always be set up as partitions in the workplace to help create separate work sections, in order to reduce noise levels. Partitioning off spaces also helps create personalized work stations, a space for each employee in order to help boost their creativity and allow them their own separate space to work out of.
Gypsum-based partition solutions also make for great rest areas that have excellent acoustic and thermal insulation properties. With the hustle and bustle of city life and long work hours at the office, sleep becomes last on the priority list. A regular, 15-20 minutes power nap in the ‘rest area’ of a workspace can boost employee performance and contribute to the company’s overall growth.
Larger office spaces truly benefit from drywalls as they are lightweight and can be installed anywhere in the office. In case of a change in the office layout, these (drywall) systems can be easily detached and set up as per the new plan.
Colours and lighting
Designer ceilings offer maximum unobstructed view of a space and can make any workspace come alive. Gypsum-based designer ceilings usher in a positive and dynamic vibe at the workplace by introducing a variety ofcolours, shapes and designs and providing a seamless, smooth finish with add-on advantage of having superior acoustic performance unlike conventional ceilings.
Extremely durable, designer ceilings also offer an extensive range of lighting options, something that can truly define the ambience and culture of a workspace.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.