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#OfficeEnvy affects more than half of Brits as workplaces fail to inspire

Research released today by experts in workspace plant design, Ambius, has found that UK office workers long to work in more beautiful and inspiring offices, with 56% claiming they have felt disappointed by their office design after visiting another organisations’.

More natural light (61%), space (60%), interesting décor (42%), colour (33%) and plants (31%) were the main aspects of the other organisations’ office design that made respondents feel disappointed. While almost two thirds (63%) claimed they would appreciate their office more if it had more natural elements, such as plants, daylight and exposed wood.

Over half (55%) of those who long for more inspiring offices said they have communicated this to their office manager or employer, but the majority (61%) have seen no change as a result. 

The survey of over 1,000 UK office workers found that failure to make efforts to improve the workplace could be impacting an organisation’s bottom line and ability to recruit new staff. Almost a third (30%) of office workers felt their office environment turns off potential clients, prospects and staff from working with their business.

Prettpal Somel, UK Marketing Executive, Ambius, comments: “Employers need to remember that the physical workplace has a significant impact on the performance of those working there. An uninspiring environment that doesn’t stimulate the senses of employees or make them feel comfortable is very unlikely to get the most out of its people.

“There are practical changes that employers and office managers can implement which could help improve the workplace in the eyes of employees. Tapping into humanity’s innate need to connect with nature and the natural environment is a good place to start. For example, 58% of workers said that their office doesn’t have enough plants, and half believe natural light should be mandatory.” 

Social shyness

Workers are also wary of how their office looks on social media. Just one in five (20%) think their office space is beautiful, and as a result, only 22% would be proud enough to post a picture of it on Instagram, or other social channels. 

The idea of an office being ‘Instagrammable’ or aesthetically pleasing enough to share on social channels is even more important to Generation Z - those aged between 16 and 24. Almost half (46%) of this age bracket agree that social media has changed their expectations of how an office should, or could look, and 30% think employers should do more to make their office ‘Instagram friendly’. 

The following office features were found to be the most ‘Instagrammable’ by respondents:

  • General décor 
  • The view 
  • Rooftop/ outside area
  • Office plants 
  • Café/ bar area

Prettpal Somel concludes: “Whether they like it or not, employers need to remember that social media has become a central part of people’s lives. Creating an office environment that inspires people to share on social channels makes good business sense, aiding with staff recruitment, especially amongst younger generations, as well as improving productivity, creativity and a sense of wellbeing.”