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Mon August 03 2020

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Report links office design to health

24 Sep 14 A new report from the World Green Building Council claims that there is ‘overwhelming evidence’ that office design significantly impacts upon the health and productivity of staff.

'Have a good day at the office'
'Have a good day at the office'

The report, called Health, Wellbeing and Productivity in Offices: The Next Chapter for Green Building* says that a range of factors – from air quality and lighting, to views of nature and interior layout – can affect the health, satisfaction and job performance of office workers.

The authors make the case for spending extra on the design and construction of office buildings because any additional costs here would be dwarfed by the benefits of even the smallest improvements in staff health and performance.

Jane Henley, CEO of the World Green Building Council, said: “The evidence linking good office design and improved health, wellbeing and productivity of staff is now overwhelming. There is unquestionably a clear business case for investing in, developing and occupying healthier, greener buildings.

“Most businesses are already sitting on a treasure trove of information that can have an immediate impact on their two biggest expenses – people and buildings. Understanding the relationship between the two can help businesses achieve significant competitive advantage.”

The report is sponsored by JLL, Lend Lease and Skanska

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JLL head of strategic workplace (EMEA) Claudia Hamm) said: “Major corporate clients are now recognising the business benefits and productivity gains of buildings which bring out the best in their employees and are increasingly making their strategic real estate decisions with these in mind. This report reinforces the view that a building’s impact on its occupants must be included within financial considerations.”

Lend Lease group head of sustainability Geoff Dutaillis said: “Whatever business you are in, you are in the business of people. How a building ‘works for people’ should be the priority question. This report provides further evidence that workplaces with clean air, natural daylight and engaging and adaptable layouts all contribute to making healthier, happier and more motivated individuals who create stronger, more resilient and profitable companies.”

Skanska green business officer Staffan Haglind added: “The equation for our clients is very simple: a small percentage improvement in the health and productivity of your staff far outweighs any additional costs associated with commissioning or occupying a greener, healthier office. Giving employees the best possible conditions to perform and stay healthy is not only wise from a financial perspective, it’s just the right thing to do.”

* The report can be downloaded at www.worldgbc.org/activities/health-wellbeing-productivity-offices

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