The past two years have truly thrown a spanner in the works. With data showing more than half of New Zealand workers have considered changing jobs in 2022, whether through preference or necessity, there’s been a widespread shift towards a new way of working. Australia is no different. With 44% of employees working from home since the pandemic and levels unlikely to return to pre-pandemic figures, many have found it possible to find greater work-life balance and adapt to work and workspaces where needed.
For this, environment is essential. Whether in home offices or commercial buildings, the physical conditions of where we work can play a crucial role in the comfort, enjoyment and productivity we experience there. Light, for example, plays a major part in determining how able we are to focus. Research shows that working in natural light allows us to stay on-task 15 percent longer than when working under artificial light only.
Colour also factors in, with yellows enhancing creativity and greenery, particularly from indoor plants, adding to feelings of focus and calm. Many offices have made natural light a staple feature, with examples like Auckland’s B:Hive using a central atrium to flood the building with natural light that works with, rather than disrupting their resident’s circadian rhythm. So, whether you’re at home, in an office that already boasts these features, or looking to add some to yours, consider how small changes might achieve some of these benefits. A potted plant at the desk, some well-placed art, or strategic walks outside to enjoy the sun can work wonders for your mood, joy and productivity.
With employees now accustomed to working in more ‘casual’ home settings, companies are also looking at ways in which they can incorporate home comforts into workspaces to make them more inviting. This is a trend seen pre-pandemic internationally, at tech behemoths like Google and other Silicon Valley start-ups, where break rooms, breastfeeding areas and even sleep pods have eschewed the classic corporate office layout to provide liveable, as well as ‘workable’ spaces. This trend is expected to continue, whether through office design and renovation, the addition of textured fabrics and materials for sensory diversity or extra-curricular experiences, like yoga and meditation.
Dynamic spaces are also on the rise. With the pandemic ushering in less populated workspaces, either for health and safety, or flexibility, many offices have started to broaden open-plan spaces, with areas for collaboration, standard desks, and solitary spaces for enhanced concentration. Diversifying ‘where’ you work, or taking breaks from your desk to change your environment is a way to incorporate focus and productivity-boosting ‘micro-breaks’ into your routine, enhancing your dedicated bouts of work as a result.
Another productivity-boosting hack is personalisation. Many found themselves achieving more while working from home, and this may be down to research that shows having personal belongings at your place of work can establish a positive relationship with the environment. Allowing your identity to flourish is what this comes down to, as well as creating a sense of comfort and familiarity. Flying in the face of the previously held notion that ‘only the essentials’ created a minimalist, productive safe-haven, a little of the things you love can go a long way. Photos of friends and family, a favourite mug or decoration are all ways in which you can add a bit of ‘you’ to where you get your work done.
Ergonomics also play a major role. How we position ourselves while working is one of the most important contributors to productivity, health, task engagement and enjoyment in our place of work. We’ve all had the experience of working at a cluttered desk, or uncomfortable chair, and the fidgeting and general discomfort that comes with it. By selecting the right high-quality office chairs, desk position and even the right layout of items on your desk, you can optimise your work element for your health, wellness and productivity. Add positive habits to the mix, like regular standing, stretching, breaks from your screen and strolls outside, and you’re ready to make 2022 work for you.
For those in a corporate office, while your options to customise your commercial fit-out may be limited, desk chairs are one of the most integral elements of your work experience. For this Buro has you covered. Replacing your standard work chair with an ergonomic option is a great way to ensure you stay free from aches and pains, are well-positioned at your desk and most importantly, supported for the entirety of your workday.
Options like the Buro Mentor are perfect for those looking to settle into the 2022 work year in style. Featuring Buro’s Dynamic Intelligence™ seating technology, self-weighting tension adjustment and optional 4D arms, it’s a chair that truly works around you and your postural needs.
The Buro Metro is a signature chair that offers comparable adjustability, with the added benefit of enhanced lumbar support to keep you primed for productivity. The mesh detailing allows enhanced breathability for the warmer ‘back-to-work’ days, keeping you cool, calm and collected while you work.
For unparalleled support, look no further than the Roma High Back 24/7. Supported by the highest AFRDI standards (Australasian Furnishing Research and Development Institute), it’s a heavy-duty, height-adjustable option for those looking to position themselves for true workplace comfort, 24/7.
Working from home?
If your WFH set-up has been a dining table scenario, or a laptop on the lap, setting up desks with quality home office chairs can work wonders for priming you and your workspace for success.
The Konfurb Harmony is an internationally-acclaimed seating option that brings a minimalist, contemporary design with dynamic functionality to your home-based work environment. Like all Buro options, the chair boasts adjustability allowing you to customise your comfort, while also being lightweight and mobile.
So, no matter where you choose to work, little adjustments can make a world of difference. Just like our chairs, your environment, habits and the way you work can be customised to set you up for success. With workplace wellbeing in mind, each Buro chair is designed to support you where and when you need to perform at your best, promoting health, productivity and more fulfilling workplaces, in-office, or at home.
Shop the Buro ergonomic chair NZ range to find the perfect office furniture for you and master your work element in 2022.