The Science Behind Modern Sydney Office Design

Through numerous studies and evidence-based reports, science has unequivocally told us what the perfect workplace looks like. The research has deduced that this ideal office features a number of elements that many Sydney offices have already implemented, along with others that aren’t so common. 

There are three questions we need to ask at this point…

What research was conducted to garner this information? What are these elements that make the perfect office? And what are the benefits of following this blueprint for the so-called, perfect office? 

Let’s take a closer look below.

What does the research say?

Office and workplace design has been the subject of countless studies over the years since the idea of office work and design was conceived. There have been studies that focus on the effectiveness of certain layouts, such as open plan design. More studies still have been conducted on the impact of noise in the office. Even more again have analysed the enormous range of elements that influence the productivity of the average office worker.

This Sydney University study from back in 2013 asked 42,000 office workers about their preferred office, and how they like to work. The biggest finding was that the majority of these workers hated the open-plan office, and found that it came with enormous distraction and irritation. Therefore, one of the key findings in the search for the ‘perfect office’ was minimising the use of open-plan spaces.

Noise is a big factor in the office. This study by Cambridge University found that working in a noisy office increases negative moods by roughly 25%, and sweat response to stress by 34%. While there was no immediate impact found on productivity, it is reasonable to expect a downtrend over time, when stress levels have increased as such.

When it comes to lighting, a French study found that employees prefer to exacerbate natural light where possible, by using only dim artificial light. They also like to have some control over the lighting in their environment, with some sort of remote. This study highlighted the need for ample natural lighting, along with the right balance.

Mental well-being in the workplace is receiving more attention than ever… as should be. Unfortunately, the mental health of office workers (and employees in all sorts of working environments)  has been neglected for many years. This study hypothesised that office design can impact employee mental health through a number of factors, including lighting, physical elements, and exposure to nature. 

Clearly, after taking a brief look at these studies and their findings, there are some clear factors that are key to creating the perfect office environment.

Evidence-based design

Evidence-based design is the process of designing your Sydney office to best cater to your people and your business. This design will be based on the evidence collected throughout the relevant study or studies, as we touched on above. 

The key elements that are essential to creating the perfect Sydney office fit-out are:

  • Exposure to natural elements such as plants
  • The layout of your office, including visibility and distance
  • Noise and acoustic control
  • Lighting
  • Ceiling height.

At Niche Projects, we’re well aware of the importance of these components in designing and conducting a Sydney office fit-out. They are key to creating an environment that promotes employee well-being, along with productivity.

The essential elements  


Plants are a very affordable yet effective addition to every single workplace. Research has proven that these green friends have a fantastic impact on the mental well-being of people nearby. That includes reduced stress levels, better concentration, and more creativity. Check out our guide on the best plants for your Sydney office design.


Your Sydney office layout will have a direct impact on your employees’ ability to do their job. Furthermore, it can also affect their mental and physical health. Working with a professional office design company is a must when establishing a functional, productive layout when refurbishing or fitting out your Sydney office.

Visibility is an important consideration; research shows that employees who cannot see each other in the workplace, are much less likely to interact. Unfortunately, that often means less creativity and collaboration between your people. That leads to less innovation.

Distance is another factor that will impact those invaluable interactions between staff, among other things. For instance, if your office kitchen or bathrooms are some distance from certain employees, they’re much more likely to be frustrated with the way that your (and their) workplace is laid out.

Noise control

Noise simply must be controlled in an office environment. It is true that some employees thrive in a bustling, noisy environment. Perhaps it helps them maintain energy, or stimulates their creativity. However, studies have proven that most employees are negatively affected by excessive noise at work.

Controlling noise in an office environment is often easier said than done. You can’t simply switch off the voices of your employees. However, making use of partitions and plants will go a long way to creating a more productive workplace for all.


Quality lighting in the office is an absolute necessity. A huge amount of research has proven that poor lighting will have a terrible effect on your employees, affecting both their physical and mental health. It can cause eye strain, muscle strain (from leaning closer to computer monitors), increased stress, and more likelihood of developing mental illness.

Balancing lighting can be tough, but it doesn’t have to be. Working with a Sydney office design company should result in an excellent lighting set-up for your workplace. At Niche Projects, we’ve designed lighting plans for many offices, ensuring that people and businesses benefit. We can also make the most of the existing natural lighting in your workplace.


High ceilings in an office have proven to help increase employee happiness and even productivity. It’s no secret that some offices can feel cramped and claustrophobic, which is one of the reasons that the open-plan office is so popular. However, higher ceilings can have a wonderful impact on your office, helping open it up and allow for a better flow of light and air. There’s no doubt that the ‘perfect office’ would include high ceilings.

Professional Sydney office design and office fit-out

Are you looking for a new Sydney office fit-out or a refurbishment of your existing workplace? Quality Sydney office design is a must in every workplace. At Niche Projects, we’ve helped countless businesses craft the perfect workplace for their people, allowing their organistion to thrive. Get in touch with us today for a Sydney office fit-out.