International News — 05 September 2012

Interior design efforts for the workplace setting have an overriding impact on productivity. Strategic goals for these modern spaces include providing an environment that is both functional and comfortable, drawing the best performance from workers and boosting the bottom line.

While bolstering productivity in the past meant providing zero distraction ‘work-only’ zones, that used high energy loads on IT services and other such devices, making them some of the biggest carbon polluting buildings – particularly in Australia – new research and a changed social attitude means that office buildings of today completely invert this practice.

According to research published by the University of Notre Dame management professors, LEED certified banks in the US did more business than similar uncertified banks. The study took into consideration 562 office buildings of US bank PNC, with the information outcomes confirming a distinct correlation between green buildings and increased activity.

“We compared the amount of money deposited at LEED and non-LEED branches, and we found more money has been deposited in the LEED branches,” says researcher Edward Conlon.

That monetary increase comes to the incredible tune of more than $461,300 per employee in a LEED certified building. While the study did not conclude whether the increase was due to increased productivity on the part of workers or increase traffic in the bank branches due to green features, the difference was striking.

The ingredients for green office design are not set in stone and there is no one route that companies can take when retrofitting their office spaces, but research is mounting in favour of these kinds of spaces and the positive economic results they bring.

It has reached a point where industry analysts Verdantix have warned industry members that they may be at risk of losing out on the potential of a huge market if they neglect to maximise the promotions available by partaking in green office development.

In their report ‘The Future of the Green Office’, the analysts convey the importance of green office buildings due to the added value they offer to both developer and employee/building inhabitant.

“Sustainability issues will gain in importance over the next five years, creating an obsolescence risk for developers, and this is most evident at the prime end of the market whether green has become a synonym for grade A space,” reads the report.

Driving productivity through design is not about making a space either overly institutional or overly comfortable to the point where it is almost leisure-focused. It is about finding the right balance and offering the best possible environment for employees to work in.

The industry and public at large have determined that the best environment is a green space. This kind of building is not simply a growing necessity given the world’s current environmental state. Research is showing that it is a necessity in terms of maximising a workplace’s productivity and improving the bottom line.

Source: Design Source By Tim Moore

Image: Green Interiors

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