The benefits of office plants

The interior design of your workplace may not be at the top of your list of priorities.

You may worry about the look of the main reception or meeting rooms, which provide a vital first impression to clients and visitors, but be less concerned about the actual office space where your employees spend the majority of their week.

Look around you now. What do you see? The truth is many offices across the country are quite drab and uninspiring.

Have you thought about having plants in the office? You may be sitting there thinking they look nice but are there actually any real benefits? Do they have an effect on employees? The answer to both these questions is yes.

A study involving academics from the University of Exeter, the University of Groningen and the University of Queensland found that plants can boost productivity by 15%. They say that it “increases employees’ work engagement by making them more physically, cognitively, and emotionally involved in their work”.

If this isn’t enough to convince you, it is also argued that the presence of plants in the office can:

  • Improve employees’ concentration
  • Improve air quality and thereby reduce sickness absence rates
  • Reduce stress
  • Reduce ambient noises
  • Make employees happier and more satisfied at work.

But before you go and rush out to buy for some plants for your workplace, remember that they do need some love and care. It is best to do some research and buy ones that are low-maintenance. After all, there may be times of the year when the workplace closes, for example over the Christmas and New Year period where there will be no one around to look after them.

You also need to pay attention to the amount of sunlight they will need – getting a plant that requires lots of direct sunlight in a workplace which has few windows or natural light may be a problem!

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James Tamm

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