Expand your workspace with outdoor office furniture
Is there any downside to adding outdoor space to your office? With more natural light, fresh air, and additional space, it’s hard to find one.
In the past outdoor space may have been added to a workspace to provide a social area or for relaxation. Recently, it has been seen as a way to improve an agile working environment. A terrace can be a versatile space for meetings, events, or focused work.
Well-being at Work
Technology has created an ‘always on’ culture that makes it difficult to switch off from work. But this doesn’t equate to increased productivity and many employers recognise the importance of regular breaks. Providing outdoor space is a way in which businesses can promote well-being at work. With indoor air reputedly 2- 5 times dirtier than outdoor air, getting outside has health benefits.
Providing an outdoor workspace creates an environment in which it is easier to be sociable and still socially distance. But, more importantly, better connection with nature has been shown to increases happiness, reduce distractions, and improve creative thinking. Working outdoors can be novel and fun as well as creating opportunities for spontaneous interactions.
To encourage employees back to an office, workspace has become increasingly ‘employee-centric.’ After extended periods of working from home, the workplace needs to be as appealing as the comfort of home.
Mental and Physical Benefits
Many of us have already experienced the benefit of spending more time outdoors during the recent periods of lockdown. Research by The University of Cumbria found that 72% of women and 60% of men reported an interest in spending more time in nature in the future.
Even before the pandemic the mental and physical benefits of spending time outdoors were being promoted by the medical profession. In Shetland, the NHS issues ‘nature prescriptions’ to tackle a range of conditions such as high blood pressure and anxiety.
According to Mind, spending time in natural environments helps to reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression. More time outdoors can also alleviate suffering of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).
Outdoor Office Furniture Inspiration
Recommended Time Outdoors
Concern over the lack of nature in our urban offices inspired the biophilic design trend. For decades we’ve been bringing the outdoors in. Maybe it’s time to take the indoors out.
Research has shown that spending at least 120 minutes a week in nature is associated with good health and well-being. Being in the open air is restorative and provides workers with a much-needed rest from screen time. Adding outdoor tables, outdoor chairs and lounge areas encourages employees to take proper breaks during the day.
Outdoor Meeting Space
With many outdoor commercial furniture options available, outdoor meetings are also becoming increasingly popular. And even though the weather can be unpredictable there are covered outdoor meeting pods that can be used all year round.
Additional considerations for outdoor meeting space would include access to power and Wi-Fi, sufficient shade, and privacy. Sourcing the right solutions to encourage use and maximise space will be key to creating a successful outdoor workspace.
Improve sustainability with outdoor workspace
Businesses can boost their eco-credentials by filling their outdoor space with plants and trees that will allow wildlife to flourish. Demonstrating care for the environment with small changes can have a significant impact on attracting and retaining the best talent.
Research has established that businesses are prioritising the environment in their return-to-work strategy. Not only does it create a more positive brand perception but is expected by employees.
Utilising outdoor space may also help reduce use of climate control systems like AC and heating. At a time when fuel costs are soaring this a positive step for the environment and reduces costs.
Outdoor Furniture Solutions
There is lots of great commercial outdoor furniture available to extend your workspace. Irrespective of the weather or the limits of your space, we can find you the perfect weather resistant solution.
Take a look at our Flexible Workspace Solutions Catalogue for outdoor office furniture inspiration or contact us firstname.lastname@example.org