5 Key Design Principles to Promote Wellness in the Workplace

5 Key Design Principles To Promote Wellness in the Workplace

Does your workplace double as a wellness space? Here are five key design principles to help you promote wellness in your workplace:

5 Design Principles…

ONE: Take advantage of biophilic design benefits

Biophilic design is focused on reconnecting people to nature and taking advantage of our innate biological connection through visual, non-visual, thermal, airflow and water cues to nature. Biophilic design has been proven to benefit wellness in the workplace through reducing stress, improving cognitive function and creativity, and improving our overall wellbeing and health.

Biophilic design can be incorporated into the workplace in a number of ways:

  • Visual and non-visual connections eg/ green walls, vegetated rooftops, potted plants, views
  • Thermal & airflow variability eg/ subtle change in air temperature and humidity, planting to improve air quality
  • Presence of water eg/ water features, outdoor views
  • Dynamic lighting eg/ lighting systems that either naturally or artificially change through the day to mimic our circadian rhythm

TWO: Offer varied space options

Your workplace should support the cognitive, physical and emotional needs of your people through providing workspaces where individuals and teams can think, concentrate, interact and generate ideas. Offering a variety of independent and collaborative space options is fundamental to supporting the wellbeing of your people.

Functional and aesthetic design details need to work together to create the right atmosphere to support your objectives – space options can include dedicated desks (a specifically allocated desk), hot desks (unreserved desk), office spaces, conference rooms, phone booths, breakout booths, common areas, tea stations and more.

THREE: Design for ergonomics

Provide your people with comfortable, ergonomically correct seating and worktables to support their physical and emotional wellbeing. An ergonomically designed workplace will take into account the physical and psychological needs of your employees to ensure they are supported by an atmosphere that is conducive to meet organisational goals.

Ergonomic design takes into account posture, seating, repetition, eye strain, psychological stresses and more.

FOUR: Promote connectivity & inclusion

By our very nature, we desire a sense of belonging in our workplace – a place where we can feel comfortable, accepted and at ease. Promoting a culture of inclusion and connectivity is a key success factor and something that workplace design can make a substantial difference in.

The floor plan and spatial design play a fundamental role in ensuring functional adjacencies and workflows allow users to naturally interact, connect and exchange knowledge.

FIVE: Promote health & fitness

With the distinction between work and life becoming increasingly blurred, health and fitness amenities play a key role in promoting workplace wellbeing. An exciting wellbeing concept many workplaces are adopting is the inclusion of ‘end-of-trip’ facilities to promote healthy lifestyles for their people.

These facilities are designed to encourage working professionals to take up exercise through the working week with the assurance of suitable shower and changing facilities. They typically include bike racks, showers, changing amenities and often relaxation areas.

Contact your local IA Design team to discuss how you can tranform your workplace to promote wellbeing.


IA Design - The phenomenon of co-working is up and running… but where to? By Craig Hansen
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