On the rise: the ten factors for a productive workplace

This white paper by Area, a company in the Fourfront Group, addresses the continuing search for productivity, and creates an opportunity for organisations to reflect on how they can make changes towards a more productive workforce

Productivity in the UK has dragged behind its European counterparts since the financial crisis in 2008, with little improvement in almost a decade. Organisations, particularly in the creative industries, have continuously searched for the simple answer to the productivity dip but to no avail.

Working smarter, not harder

Growing research highlights that there is not necessarily a correlation between hours worked and a productivity increase. The UK is struggling behind all six of the EU’s major economies on productivity, despite working some of the longest hours in Europe. This means that productivity cannot be measured based on the number of hours spent at a desk – other methods have to come into play.

The answer does not lie in the number of employees either; in fact increasing the number of employees without creating appropriate space can suppress productivity even more. A study revealed that 70 per cent of employees in the UK believe that their office is too noisy and lack diverse workspace because there are too many people in the office.

So, does the answer lie in workspace design?

Designing a productive workplace

Design, culture and leadership all need re-evaluation when it comes to accessing productivity in the workplace. It is no secret that office design can have a direct impact on how people think and feel at work. Positive attitudes in the workplace can lead to positive differences in productivity.

Area, which is part of Fourfront group, has produced a white paper that identifies 10 key factors accountable for a more productive workplace. There is no quick answer – factors from environment to access to knowledge need to be considered.

The 10 factors Area has identified are: having access to nature; a culture of innovation; a focus on people, daylight and fresh air; quiet space; learning and collaborative settings; a controlled space; an enhanced workplace experience; access to colleagues; and access to a knowledge pool.

If an organisation considers each of these factors and implements them into the workspace, it will spark a change in attitude in the workforce. The message is that positive outlook on work can foster productivity and collaboration.

Download full Area white paper on productivity here
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