Detailed plans have now been announced for the unlocking of England starting on March 8 with a view to removing all legal limits on mixing no earlier than the 21 June (subject to “data rather than dates” and vaccination program progressing as planned). As we start to move out of lockdown and thoughts turn to the summer it’s an ideal time to start thinking about planning your Kent or London office design and refurbishment plans.
Clearly ensuring your office is Covid safe and secure should still form a major part of your office layout however that shouldn’t stop you from looking to incorporate an office design that boosts your business brand, makes staff engaged and proud to work there which in turn helps to improve productivity.
One element of office design and refurbishment is colour. Colour psychology, the study of hues as a determinant of human behaviour, has been around for a long time and its clear colour plays a vital role in how it affects us on a day to day basis. How it is used within the workplace can affect our mood, our productivity and our wellbeing. In this article we look at what colour can do and what colour is right for your Kent or London office space.
What Can Colour Do For Your Kent or London Office Design?
Numerous studies have been undertaken to look at how the use of colour can impact mood, wellbeing and productivity. A small sample of them these include:
- “The Effects of Color Scheme on the Appraisal of An Office Environment and Task Performance” (PDF). They found that offices which used colour were found to be “more pleasant, attractive, satisfying and dynamic” and that participants performance tasks better when they were in a room with colour.
- “The Effects of Colour in Work Environment: A systematic Review”. They concluded that “strong evidence was established that colour in work environment plays a significant role in human’s perception and behaviour especially mood, wellbeing and performance. The use of colour in the workplace can enhance positive mood, contribute the sense of wellbeing and lead to a positive outcome.”
- “Color and Visual Comfort” (PDF). Texas university found through a series of studies that subjects in the lighter coloured office spaces (white, beige, yellow, and grey) made more errors than subjects in the darker coloured offices (red, blue, green, and purple). Males reported more depression, confusion, and anger in the higher saturated (brighter) offices, while female subjects reported more depression, confusion, and anger in the lower saturated colour (duller) offices.
- “Work Week Productivity, Visual Complexity, and Individual Environmental Sensitivity in Three Offices of Different Color Interiors”. This study looked at the impact of colour on productivity in three different coloured rooms: red, aqua and white. The results showed that some people were distracted by the colour red, others were able to “block out” the colour; the majority of people felt comfortable in the aqua painted room which lent itself to a more calming atmosphere while being less sterile than the white rooms. Staff in the white room where more likely to make mistakes in the task set. Nancy Kwallek who ran the study commented “White doesn’t help us be productive, and most work environments are white, off-white, or gray. There have been studies that asked worker preference about environment and colour, and the majority felt they liked to work in a blue or blue-green environment.”
- “User perceptions in workplace productivity and strategic FM delivery” (PDF). Examines research from numerous papers which look at how colour is perceived within a work environment. They summarised this by saying “workplace design can have considerable impact on user perceptions and a consequent knock-on effect to the overall strategic goals of the organisations core business.” They also emphasised “the importance of user perceptions in an organisational sense by explaining the importance of staff involvement and participation in workplace design.”
What Colours Are Right For Your Kent and London Office Interiors?
What colours you use will depend on a number of factors including:
- Brand. Many companies want to use their own brand colours for their offices. In many cases (depending on the colours) this will work well. For some, depending on the colours used within the brand, especially if the colours are dark or too bold then it can have a negative impact. In the case where company colours may not be the best choice look at complimentary colours that could be used with company branding so the corporate identify isn’t lost.
- Making a Statement. You don’t want to saturate an office space with colour. Too much colour can be overwhelming and suffocating. Instead it’s best to go for colour highlights that says something about your business, makes you stand out and can work as a focal / talking point.
- Layout. Consider your office layout. Where would colour work best? Where would it have the most/best impact? Think about when you walk into your office space and how it makes you feel. If you have a reception area, colour could give your business a professional and make the space feel inviting to staff and visitors.
When it comes to thinking about what colours will be right for your Kent or London office design and fit out you should not only consider the colour of your office walls, but it’s also worth considering the following to inject colour into the office space:
- Artwork. Brian Thompson and Drivers Jonas, in a survey for the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, say “A modest improvement in productivity can deliver economic benefits that overshadow the savings that can be achieved through economies in areas such as rent, FM costs and utilities. A staggering 93.8% of respondents to our survey believe that art makes the workplace feel more welcoming and 60.8% of them feel that it also stimulates creativity in staff.” Research carried out by Dr Craig Knight at the University of Exeter also showed that artwork, rather than be a distraction, can increase the productivity of workers.
- Graffiti and street art wall murals. Graffiti comes in a number of forms from traditional to shape, to abstract and photo reel and customised to match your colour requirements. Graffiti and street art wall murals can provide a splash of colour and be a focal, talking point within your business space. For maximum impact you can use graffiti art in your reception, corridors, meeting rooms, stairwells and the main office area.
- Furniture. Your office furniture can provide the splash of colour that will bring your office space to life and it can be matched to your overall colour scheme. You can choose from off the shelf furniture or bespoke pieces to meet your needs.
- LED lighting. Suspended ceilings and wall lighting can be used to incorporate colour changing LED lighting to create mood within your office space.
- Flooring. From carpet and ceramic tiles to laminate to vinyl and solid wood flooring comes in a multitude of options and colour ranges. Flooring can be used to differentiate different areas through colour which in turn gives your office a colour boost.
How Can We Help?
JBH Refurbishments have over 30 years experience in Kent and London office design and fit outs. To find out how we can help you design and incorporate colour into your Kent or London office space to the highest standards contact us via our contact form or by calling us on 0333 207 0339.