Productivity on a budget

Productivity on a budget

We know that the look of an office and its layout often has a significant impact on employees and how well they work. The office can boost productivity, enhance comfort and wellbeing for staff and encourage a friendly and focused atmosphere. Large multinational corporations like Airbnb invest hugely in creating innovative office spaces that employees will look forward to working in every day. However it is still possible for companies to create a comfortable office environment that supports efficiency on a much smaller budget. So where can managers make costs savings but still maintain a productive office?

Saving energy

Reducing energy consumption is a great way to cut down costs. Installing reminders to staff to switch off at the end of the day, during lunchtime or when a piece of equipment is not in use seems like a small step but can make a big difference on energy bills and won’t get in the way of staff working productively. Renewable energy is another cost saving option available to employers. Although it may require some investment, the long term financial and environmental benefits will outweigh the costs. Solar power can help to reduce or in some cases eliminate electricity costs for businesses. Figures show that in continental Europe, almost a third of all solar panels are used by commercial businesses. However the UK is lagging behind its European neighbours. According to statistics from Office of Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem), in 2014 just 400 out of an estimated 1.8 million commercial properties had installed solar panel systems. So despite being a cheaper option, solar power is an underused resource for cutting down expenses in the office.

Time is money

Modern day offices require a lot of different equipment ranging from computers and printers to more specialist technologies that are required in specific industries for example large computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing (CAD/CAM) machines. Businesses on a budget have a range of purchasing options available to them, including hire purchase, buying outright, leasing or contracting. Choosing smart machinery that performs more than one function is another great way to save on costs and time. A combined printer, scanner and photocopier will not only reduce equipment costs but also mean that an employee doesn’t have to make separate trips to use the facilities. This frees up their time to focus on their tasks at work, ultimately improving the productivity of the office.

Self-automated machinery like Rexel’s Auto Feed shredder is another great way to reduce time spent on office tasks, at a small price. Users can simply load documents into the shredder’s secure chamber and leave it to destroy the documents inside – stack, shut, done!

Working together to cut costs

Letting employees take a role in the creation of the office environment may also become an opportunity to reduce costs. Managers can encourage staff to bring in their own personal effects to brighten up their workspace and create an atmosphere that makes them feel comfortable. Even small additions like brightly coloured stationery tools can do a lot to personalise an office without breaking the bank. Rexel’s JOY stationery range comes in 4 standout colours that are perfect for bringing a dull workspace to life. Choosing their own tools also gives staff the chance to adapt their office to boost their productivity. They can arrange what they need to work efficiently however they choose with little or no cost to the business.

Even with a smaller budget, businesses have a range of options available to them to create a productive working environment that saves money. It’s important to keep in mind what is necessary for an office to be successful and managers must identify and prioritise expenditures necessary to keep staff working as efficiently as possible.

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Sources

http://www.smallbusiness.co.uk/running-a-business/business-management/1111636/paying-for-equipment.thtml

http://smallbiztrends.com/2014/10/how-to-save-on-energy-costs-office.html

http://news.mit.edu/2013/reducing-wasted-energy-in-commercial-buildings

http://is4profit.com/office-energy-wastage-the-top-10-offenders/

http://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/commercial-solar-energy-installation-uk

http://smallbusiness.chron.com/benefits-solar-power-business-94.html

Alex Walker
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