Five Office Design Studies You Should Know About

There is an enormous amount of research conducted around workplace design and construction. At Niche Projects, we’re always fascinated by these studies, as many of the findings influence how we design and build your workplace today.

In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the most influential and insightful office design and workplace studies conducted, and their effects on the industry.

How does office design support employees’ health?

A Case Study on the Relationships among Employees’ Perceptions of the Office Environment, Their Sense of Coherence and Office Design.

Melina Forooraghi, Elke Miedema, Nina Ryd, and Holger Wallbaum.

The well-being of employees in the workplace is the responsibility of every employer. And it’s up to commercial businesses to provide an office that supports good health among its people. This study delved into the design circumstances of an office. It also looked at employees’ perceptions of the office environment in relation to their perceived health. 

Much of the findings of the study revolved around flexibility. It was advised that management and business owners remain constantly ready to alter the office environment according to the health needs and performance of employees. This provided the best results in terms of well-being, as well as performance. Hence, flexibility is important in any office environment.

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The work environment pilot

An experiment to determine the optimal office design for a technology company.

Jegar Pitchforth, Elizabeth Nelson-White, Marc van den Helder, Wouter Oosting.

This particular study focused on technology companies and open-plan office space, which has become more common than ever. However, the open-plan office comes with many notable disadvantages, which were explored in this report. The experiment itself tested four types of offices against each other: open-plan, zoned open-plan, activity-based, and team offices.

The findings of this study were interesting, to say the least. It found that employees in a tech company much preferred a zoned open-plan office or team office over the usual open-plan layout. The workers performed better in these conditions too, with the key parameters being employee satisfaction, enjoyment, flow, and productivity.

On the other hand, to quote directly from the source, the open-plan office design was rated more poorly by employees, had higher levels of unsafe noise, and once employees no longer had to be in the Open-plan office design of the experiment, they spent more time at their desks. Thus it’s important to consider findings like these if you are considering an open-plan layout for your office space in Sydney.

Exploring ways to study the workplace design in a small knowledge work company

Piia Markkanen, Eevi Juuti, Aulikki Herneoja

This particular study was all about how different design solutions impact workplaces and the experience of the office worker. There was a lot of focus on bridging the gap between design and research, and effectively understanding the requirements of a workplace. The findings indicated that data drawn from active participants in the office was very effective in identifying the needs of the average office, and designing better commercial workplaces.

Impact of Office Design on Employees’ Productivity

A Case Study of Banking Organizations of Abbottabad, Pakistan

Amina Hameed, Shehla Amjad, COMSATS University Islamabad

Productivity is one of the most important considerations when designing a workplace. This study, conducted by researchers from the University of Islamabad in Pakistan, focuses specifically on employee productivity in the office, within the banking industry. However, most of the findings are easily applicable to any office-based workforce or organisation.

The findings of this study confirmed what many had already thought. Employees who were given more choice and control over their immediate environment were more productive. Prioritising comfort and ergonomic office design also motivated employees greatly and increased their performance significantly.

This study goes to show that when businesses make employees their first priority when it comes to designing a workplace, productivity will increase. It all ties into the happiness and mental well-being of workers, while a well-designed workplace removes as many obstacles as possible. In the long run, it’s a big win for the workers and the business.

Office Employees’ Perception of Workspace Contribution

A Gender and Office Design Perspective

Christina Bodin Danielsson, School of Architecture, KTH Royal Institute of Technology and Töres Theorell, Stockholm University

According to the abstract, in this study, the researchers investigated the relationship between office design and employee perception of its contribution to job satisfaction, comfort, and performance. The study itself included 4,352 employees across seven different office designs. Workplace satisfaction and perception of provided facilities such as flexible working areas, were key considerations of the study.

Analyses were performed separately for men and women throughout the study, to measure the different experiences and perceptions between genders. Across the study, the most satisfied employees were found to be those who had access to the most supportive facilities. Conversely, the lowest ratings were delivered by workers in hot-desking offices, with poor facilities. Differences in the results between genders were also observed.

What can we learn from office design studies?

The bottom line in each of these studies is that prioritising the well-being of your people and providing quality supportive facilities garners positive results. This is why it’s essential to work with a Sydney office design firm with exceptional experience and expertise. At Niche Projects, we’re ready to design and build the perfect office for your organisation.

Get in touch with us today for more information.