Setting Up Your Work Environment for a Happy Workforce

Setting Up Your Work Environment for a Happy Workforce

“In a world that’s constantly evolving and altering the way we work, the traditional office environment is being turned on its head,” accounted by This Week in FM from a newly conducted research study, ‘Life is Better Filtered: Your Working Environment’.

A comfy, pleasant space

“Flexible working, comfortable office spaces, hydration stations, access to outside areas and natural lighting are the key ingredients for a healthy and happy workforce,” the study summarizes.

The arrangement, design and ambience of work surroundings prove to result in higher rate of employee well-being and work productivity.

It says employees tend to be healthful, content and efficient if the place where they stay and work within eight to twelve hours satisfied them.

Not only the built of office space but also how cleanliness and order are maintained enhances the atmosphere of a pleasant working environment. It sets the mood to clear thinking and creativity.

To support this link between employee happiness and productivity, according to This Week in FM, the research accents that “varying temperature conditions, unnatural lighting and not enough drinking water are the biggest aspects of an office environment that affect productivity.”

Considering these recent findings, employers must initiate to organize their workspace as something that helps their employees stay efficient.

Training Zone recommends “to set up a nucleus that will continuously grow. It’s important to set up a culture in the company that will allow it to expand and continuously performs well, and hone talent.”

Office perks

Surprisingly, those little ‘perks’ and ‘freebies’ provided to the employees at the office affect work output and boost employee morale.

Readily available filtered water, coffee and tea

A small pantry with a variant of drinks, some healthy snacks like fruits, nuts and protein bars; plus, personal stuff like coffee mugs and spoons make a fantastic difference.

The same study shows that “available filtered water aside from tap water is seen as an added benefit to employees. Meanwhile, “having high-quality coffee and tea available improves their working day.”

Training Zone agrees to fuel the employees for productivity to keep the workplace healthy and thriving.

Comfortable office space

Organized office materials, clutter-free desks and drawers and clear surfaces and walls create a better place to work. Add fitting furniture like a proper table and chair that won’t be too strenuous to use for long hours.

Check and regulate the temperature inside the office or work area.

Ensure that wires and cables do not disturb employees while working.

Natural lighting

An ideal workspace boasts some natural sunlight as well as some windows. If this is not possible, replace it with a desk lamp or any appropriate artificial lighting.

Flexible working

Training Zone proposes “to set up workflow processes that will help employees find their way and be as productive as possible. Break up their workdays with consistent breaks. An example, use the strategy of working for 25 minutes, then taking a break for 5 minutes. These increases focus and break up the monotony.”

Outdoor meeting spaces

Recent office trends include holding company-related meetings outside the office premises. It helps if the possible locations have breathtaking landscapes and sceneries such as courtyards, rooftops, grass areas, urban terrace and parking lots.

On-site childcare facilities

Easy-to-access child care programs and facilities encourage working parents. It saves their time, increased work focus and improve productivity.

For the overall success of a business

“It’s widely understood that effective working spaces are integral to employee wellbeing and the overall success of a business.”

“Reviewing what employees want from their workplace and identify which facilities and cultural aspects will help improve their wellbeing, increase efficiency and limit distractions,” BRITA Professional concludes, as reported by This Week in FM.

Most Important Tools For Work

Most Important Tools For Work

A tool is an instrument or equipment that you use to do a particular work. The list below includes essential tools that office employees use such as pens, pencils, highlighters, paper clips etc. We exclude computers and printers because they are the primary equipment necessary to do office tasks.

Here are the ten must-have office tools:

Pencil

According to Henry Petroski, author of The Pencil – “It has all the functions of a computerized word processor: input point, an output point, delete point, eraser and so forth.” So whether it’s mechanical or ordinary pencil, it is very functional like what he said.

Iconic stapler

Jackie Gyoerkoe said, “I can’t tell you how many offices put a possession mark on their stapler, whether someone writes their name on it or chains it to their desk.”, hence it is an office supply that workers do protect as one of the must-haves.

Paper

It is one of the fundamental essentials in an office for making reports, contracts, invoices and a lot more, so having the right one (be it A4, 8.5 x 11, etc.) is vital. Be practical and wise, practice reusing papers to clean windows, wrap gifts, scrub stainless steel sink or recycling them.

Envelopes, Folders and File Keeper

These are must-haves to protect and organize your documents. Envelopes, folders and file keepers prevent them from being damaged and keep things confidential even if you ask others to take them to another person or place.

Pens

Be it a highlighter pen, marker pen, gel pen, fountain pen or ordinary type, the primary purpose of a pen is for writing and signing.

Planner

It’s easy to open the planner to see the daily schedules you don’t want to miss compared to checking them on your computer or mobile phones. It is also easier to write additional information. There is no need to worry when the battery of your phone becomes drained or no electricity to switch on your PC.

Water Bottle

Hydration sustains the proper functions of our brain, so stay hydrated by drinking water. Select a water bottle that is insulated which keeps liquid cold or hot for long hours and spill-proof to avoid accidents.

Binder and Paper Clips

They are useful filing tools that come handy and make your organizing tasks easy and quick.

Notepads and Post-its

These help you (or your colleague) to quickly jot down substantial details like the contact number or name of the person during a telephone conversation. They also remind you to finish your to-do list.

Hole Puncher and Fastener

Of course, you cannot compile anything in a folder if you don’t have these tools. They are used to keep stray documents in order. Keeps multiple documents organized.

Moreover, there are other essential tools that we may need, but there is no hurry to buy if you can complete the task without them. Having the necessary things help you do the assigned responsibilities of whatever job you have- whether you are an accountant, a doctor, an engineer or a secretary.

Time Management Tips For Managers

Time Management Tips For Managers

Wasted money is wasted time.

Commitment is a word linked to business. To keep the business flowing smoothly, time management is necessary. It is given that in this industry, there is unending daily tasks, meetings to attend to, and quota to hit and all sorts of things to do.

The manager, as the head of a team, reports to the higher-ups on what is going on in the lower hierarchy. He oversees all the workflows, provides solutions, and manages the whole structure of the team.

Hectic schedules are one of the things that a manager must be ready for when taking the challenge. After all, managers are still individuals and need some personal time too.

Here are some time management tips for the managers in order not to get burnout from hassles in work:

Make a to-do list

This list shall speak of tasks that you need to accomplish. You may not want to miss out details and soon realize it when it became a problem already. In your list, determine the most important down to those topics that require lesser attention, yet. Learn to prioritize things.

You must have a list of the daily, weekly, monthly, or your yearly targets. Make one for the team though so that they will have something to look forward and what to expect in the team. You have to strictly impose a mindset that such list has to be followed precisely and on time.

Delegate Tasks

Delegating tasks to your team based on the job they are hired onto is a big leap. You need to trust them that they are capable and will do the responsibility at the expected time and deadline. No employee wants a micro-manager who will always observe every task they do even in the smallest detail.

You need to trust your workforce and in return, they will build loyalty and respect for you. If you want to monitor the progress of your team, you may implement documents or sheets to fill up through office tools. Besides, through delegation of tasks, you might discover some innate talent and skills in the team.

Focus

Now that you have a list to follow and have delegated tasks to your team, it isn’t the time to sit down and relax. Focus on doing the bigger responsibilities assigned to you. For more focused concentration, you may put a “do not disturb” sign outside your office doorknob, this will keep others from disturbing you.

Maintain a Gameplan

One thing that ruins your time management is not having a systematic process. If you have a proper procedure that works for you and the team, it will make your work process more manageable, compared to not having any gameplan at all.

How about meetings? Meetings do not need to take an hour or so. Determine the agenda, the availability, the presenters and attendees in the meeting. Keep it precise, short, and simple. Discuss only the points that are included in the agenda so you can have ample time to do other tasks. Remember, if you can say it in an email, then just mail it.

Proper use of resources and communication

Communication is the key to a good business. There are various office tools available that you and your team can use. You may use your smartphone for calls, text messaging, and even to check your team’s progress through different phone applications. UYou can also use the gift of advanced technology by using cloud-based tools which can give you 24/7 access to all the documents you need, especially when working outside the office.

There are project management tools available online to help you remind of the tasks and meetings you need to attend to. It will help you to communicate and collaborate with your team even outside the office.

Time management isn’t a hard thing to do as long as you keep a normal pace in the process. Brush off the pressure and learn to trust yourself, the team, and your gameplan.

Legal Requirements For Setting Up An Office

Legal Requirements For Setting Up An Office

Setting up an office is both very exciting and challenging at the same time. Making sure you have absolutely everything you need is quite tricky and it requires careful planning and proper taking into consideration of some important key factors.

To help you set up your office as efficiently as possible, here is an overview of the basic key legal requirements that you need to comply with and understand.

Employment Regulation

If you’re employing staff at your office, you must assure that your employment practices are fair and legal. Legal elements apply to every job, from recruitment to disciplinary methods and including employee rights and people supervision.

These regulations are designed to prevent discriminatory employment practices. Moreover, all employees should sign a contract that states the terms and conditions of their jobs.

Taxation

Before setting up an office, you should have the necessary knowledge of tax legislation. You should be familiar with federal taxes, state and local taxes. These taxes will vary from state-to-state and are based on your business structure. If you have employees, you are responsible for paying state unemployment taxes.

Health and Safety

One of the most important requirements for setting up an office is to comply with health and safety. Providing a good working environment is undeniably an employer’s responsibility.

Health and safety cover a lot of aspects that include the following:

  • Preventing trips and slips in the office by bringing out frequent risk assessments, training staff, repairing or changing slippery floors and staircase.
  • Fire safety that includes adequate storage of flammable substances, smoke detectors, the provision of fire extinguishers, installation of fire alarms, regular monitoring of any areas and equipment that could cause a fire.
  • Office furniture, equipment, and work environment are critical to health and safety of employees. Working areas should be adequately ventilated and should be kept in suitable temperature ranges. Bathrooms should always be provided and kept clean.
  • Manual handling method. Office staff should be mindful of the proper lifting and handling techniques to prevent injuries and accidents.

Contractual Obligations

Ensure all clauses in the lease or let contract fit the nature of your business before committing to a specific place. There might be some restrictions that tenants are not allowed to make changes or alterations to the premises. Normally, applicable service charges in addition to tenant’s rights and responsibilities are specified in the contract.

Intellectual Property

Most companies today use their logo in online and written communications. If your planning on displaying a logo or other types of brand images in your office, you have to make sure you have registered their trademark. You can do this online by just paying applicable fees. Usually, trademarks validity is ten years, and you can extend it once the period is over.

Obviously, setting up an office is never an easy task. It involves a lot of processes; but just like any project, the better prepared, planning up front and reviewing the tips mentioned in this article can somewhat help you business owners have a less stressful experience and focus on the positive angles of this challenge.

10 Tips For Creating An Engaging Office Space On A Budget

10 Tips For Creating An Engaging Office Space On A Budget

Employees usually spend around 40-50 hours or 33% of their waking hours in the workplace. A positive, engaging physical environment dramatically influences their performance, creativity and productivity level. A dreary and dull office place affects mood, thinking ability, focus and adds tremendous stress while working.

These facts strongly prove the necessity of creating a better environment for employees. Office aesthetics are necessary improvements to ensure more productive employees who are responsible for pumping up company profits.

The good news is- you do not need a huge budget to spruce up your office space. Proper planning and the following ten savvy-tips are your vital tools.

Bring nature indoor

Nature is an instant mood booster. Aside from ornamental plants and flowers, the new trend is to incorporate flora and fauna patterns in interior designs which include furniture, fabrics, wood panel installation, living walls or concrete flooring. The cozy, homey vibe allows you to focus more with clarity.

Provide work lounge area

With the advent of the internet and wireless technology, employees can work anywhere within the confines of the workplace. One way is to create lounge area which serves as working and meeting space.

Opt for community workstations

Working becomes more fun with the popularity of community table where employees can easily interact with each other compared to having no interaction at all. It fosters team collaboration and open communication.

Light it up

Natural light from open windows gives refreshing, welcoming feeling which is vital to stress reduction and productivity enhancement. Replacing fluorescent lights with LED adjustable lightings significantly improve workers’ vision and productiveness. It also reduces energy consumption expense.

Use adjustable multi-purpose, hybrid furniture

Project luxury without overspending by selecting vinyl-made connected seats, hybrid filing cabinets with a plush top which can be used as visitor’s chair, mobile pedestal and modular storage which can be easily rearranged or mixed-up with other furniture.

Incorporate quirky, personal accents

Create pieces of art which capture the essence of the company. Transform one bare area into a statement wall, Accessorize it with digital photos, quote, vintage memorabilia or handmade crafts which represent your commitment to the company.

Use colors

A monochromatic environment is dull. Invigorate your spirit by putting touches of colors around your workstation. Organize your documents by colors. Colors enhance workers’ productivity level, creativity and confidence. Blue is believed to bolster concentration while Yellow boosts creative thinking and morale.

Eliminate clutter

Loose wires, cables or cords are eyesores. Hide them and other clutter such as documents, docking stations and personal items by organizing. Use clips or eye hooks to run cables and wires or wrap them with Velcro strips. Eliminate non-essential clutter using drawer or desk organizers and filing cabinets.

Use mirrors to create an illusion of space and light

Place mirror in a strategic area to reflect more light and space. It brightens dark and confined spaces. Aside from aesthetic use, it helps you check your appearance anytime you want.

Do not forget the power of smell

A pleasant, invigorating scent spells a big difference in the workplace. Air freshener won’t cost a lot so make sure to invest in it. According to a study conducted by Takasago Corporation in Japan, typists commit lesser errors. Those who smelled lemon are most efficient, followed by those who smelled jasmine and then lavender.

Can Your Business Gain Something From A Network And Internet Connection?

Can Your Business Gain Something From A Network And Internet Connection?

Setting up the physical part of your possible business perhaps is the most crucial phase of starting on your own.

You aim to optimize every detail, to get your expected output but have to focus also on cutting down the costs.

This optimization may influence the goal to initiate an effective but lesser cost communication channel with your employees and customers.

Communications is said to be one of the essential dynamics in running a business. It is the way of sharing important information between people in one organization.

It is an integral part of the business and may help maintain an effectual relationship between your clients and customers, partners and employees.

Do you need a network for your business?

Today, communications are not only restricted by verbal and written exchange of information. Internet and technology have already paved its way. Businesses and organization embraced its significance to the development and growth of their companies.

Of course, so, it is not enough to purchase a piece or several units of a computer. Then, to merely install in it the latest software and tools or position each unit in your office. The utility and function of the computer are optimized if it is connected to a network.

Thus, an internet connection and network proved to be necessary to take account in your to-do checklist for setting up an office.

Why do you need it?

As said above, if you want to promote effective communications with the people in your organization, linking your computer system to a network is the best option.

Local Area Network (LAN) connects the units inside your office and creating and managing data is more straightforward. With the flexibility of the access of the network connection, Saving, scanning, sending fax and printing documents can be done more easier.

Communicating with your employees and the transfer of information via a network is quick and hassle-free.

Network connection enables your computer to connect to the other computers inside your office and to other PCs and systems around the world.

If your company happens to occupy more than one building in one single vicinity, a campus network is set up for your business purposes. However, if your business covers several locations, your network can be linked by an extensive area network or WAN.

Moreover, connecting to the internet is the modern means to advertise your business and market your products. This is to guarantee that your brand establishes its distinct presence online.

This way, the information about your company, products or services can quickly reach your potential customers and suppliers through social media and other online platforms.

On a larger range, the benefit may be as massive as you can expect. The Balance, an online source of personal, business and finance information states that

“Connecting your business network to the biggest network around—otherwise known as the Internet—greatly expands the value and effectiveness of your business. An internet connection expands communications and provides access to critical data and information, and grants access to customers on a global scale.”

Indeed, network and internet connection must not be left out in setting up a business because it helps to improve productivity and communications through connectivity.

What do you think about this?