Green Offices

Green Offices are the place to be

Green Offices – gardens and green spaces – are fast becoming one of the major drawcards for people voluntarily returning to workplaces according to a study of 3500 global office staff by design studio, Hassell.

A leading international design practice with studios in Australia, Asia, the UK, and US, Hassel has just has just released their Great Adaptations – 2023 Workplace Futures Surveyof office staff across Australia, China and Hong Kong, Singapore, the United States, the United Kingdom, Belgium and the Netherlands.

It showed that those companies that have changed their offices and ways of working since the Covid pandemic have a 17% higher satisfaction score among employees, with more employees voluntarily returning to high-performing offices.

According to the study, the top features people want from their work are:

  1. Free lunch and food
  2. Gardens and green spaces
  3. Good coffee
  4. Fresh air
  5. Good food and retail nearby
  6. Enough space to focus without distractions

Gardens and green spaces, fresh air and enough space to focus without distractions reinforce the value of green offices, says Ian Collins, Managing Director of WaterUps, and former senior banking professional (having worked in his share of corporate offices).

WaterUps provides water efficient gardening solutions to enable companies to create low-maintenance green offices.

Aside from aesthetics and helping people feel less like they are spending their days in a sterile corporate space – thereby lifting people’s moods – plants also provide numerous health benefits as well as the opportunity to foster community through corporate gardens..

Health Benefits – Better Air Quality

Many offices have indoor pollution from various substances. The air outside can also not be that clean at times, needing to be filtered as part of the air-conditioned environment.

When you have enough greenery in the office you reduce air pollutants and provide clean air to your staff. An innovative company in India has created one of the healthiest office environments in smoggy Dehli by bringing a flotilla of plants inside at Paharpur Business Centre. It lowered pollutants by over 95% compared to outside ambient levels.

Research has found that having plenty of green plants in an office leads to better blood oxygen, better brain function, less asthma and eye irritations – and higher productivity.

Increasing Employee Productivity

A 2014 study in the UK and the Netherlands also found that plants in offices boosted productivity by 15%.

The academics conducting the study concluded that plants make offices more enjoyable, creative and profitable.

A US Study found a lack of natural light and a lack nature in the office contributed to 10% of sick days – having a negative impact on office productivity.

The Economic Times has also noted the office plants also help improve productivity by reducing stress and fatigue.

Environmentally consciousworkplaces

Having more plants in offices and gardens in the work place can help further an environmentally conscious workplace. Green waste / foddscraps can also be managed within the garden to help companies and staff reduce their economic footprint, while edible food growing gardens can be incorporated into the mix.

This would in part go some way to meeting another one of the “drawcards” for returning to the office: free lunch and food.

Green Offices with WaterUps

WaterUps has a range of wicking garden bed solutions that can be used create green offices to grow indoor plants and relaxing office gardens whilst requiring less water and attention than traditional plant installations.

Incorporating wicking technology, the systems can be used to create long interior garden beds watered from one source, statement pots and smaller pots or raised planters for individual offices. Complete food garden systems are also available.

If you are keen to create a green office to draw staff back to your office environment, contact WaterUps today. We work with a range of landscapers and suppliers that can design and install a corporate garden to make your office thrive and be an uplifting place to be.

With thanks to photographers for images: Verena Yunita.