Why you should maximise the natural light in your office

By Greg Bell

When it comes to finding a new office to lease, one of the most important factors to consider is how much natural light is present inside. An underlit office space can be a miserable place to work, impacting your employees' wellbeing as well as their productivity. An office filled with natural light, on the other hand, brings both health and productivity boosts to those that work in them. If you're looking to lease office space on the Gold Coast, levels of natural light are important to consider.

What are the benefits of natural light and how can you maximise it within your office?

What are the benefits of increased natural light in the office?

A high amount of natural light in the office can work wonders for employee health and productivity – it's remarkable how something so simple can such make a big difference.

For instance, sunlight is responsible for maintaining the body's circadian rhythm, the natural process that tells it when it's time to sleep and wake. Poor natural light in the workplace can disrupt this rhythm. A study from Northwestern Medicine and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign found that office workers exposed to a lot of natural light in their office got on average 46 minutes more sleep per night than those in darker offices. 

Another study by Francine Harb and colleagues split office workers into two groups, one stationed in a workspace with windows and one without. By the end of the study, the group in the windowless workspace were found to have higher levels of cortisol and lower levels of melatonin in their systems. High cortisol is linked with depressive symptoms and low melatonin is linked with poor sleep quality; both complications that can negatively impact employee productivity.

How can you maximise the natural light in your office?

The benefits of natural light are worth pursuing when choosing for a new office to lease. Thankfully, there are many features you can look for that maximise the light available.

1. Pick an office with skylights

Skylights can dramatically increase the amount of natural light that enters an office. Instead of having to rely entirely on artificial lighting, a skylight can provide natural light from above instead of it just coming in horizontally through the windows.

2. Consider an open-plan office layout

If the office you're considering doesn't have skylights, you're going to have to make do with the light that enters through the window. To do so, it's worth considering an open-plan office layout; dividers and cubicles dramatically cut down the natural light that gets to those that are furthest from the windows.

3. Use daylight lamps as supplements

Seasonal Affective Disorder is a temporary condition that can lower people's moods in the winter months when there isn't as much natural light present. However, a lack of natural light in an office can sometimes cause a similar effect at any time of year. If the office you want doesn't have much of it, daylight lamps that output white light at a high lux level can be effective substitutes. 

4. Paint the walls bright colours

Choosing an office with light-coloured walls or repainting them so can help reflect and spread the light around an office space. Darker colours absorb some of the light that hits them, whereas lighter colours bounce it away. For most offices, it's just not going to be practical for everyone to have a seat near a window, but light paint can help minimise the effects.

Looking for a new office space for your business? Get in touch with the team at Ray White today to learn more about how we can help.

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