Effects of lighting in the workplace

Variation in lighting can divide space without the need for real partitionsImage Credit: Supplied

Light is able to change the way we see colours, so choosing a lighting system with the right colour temperature is crucial in creating a pleasant environment inside the workplace.

Usually, a colour temperature close to that of daylight, with a small shift towards the warm side, is the best choice.

Providing light in excess is not always a fortunate recipe for enhancing the ambiance in the office. Too much light limits the workers’ ability to focus on the information displayed on monitors and, as a powerful and constant stimulus, adds up to the general level of stress and fatigue reported at the end of the working hours.

There should be no room for shadows or improperly illuminated areas in the office. These places would quickly become a magnet for lost items, also draining productivity away. A space with not enough light is perceived as being smaller because the human eye sees differently in areas with few details. Therefore, it is not a wise decision to rent many square metres just to lose them due to insufficient lighting.

Some areas of a building are, by design, a problem when it comes to being included in the general lighting scheme. Small appliances that are intelligently distributed and complementary to the main lighting fixtures can resolve such problems.

Variation in lighting across the office can be used to divide space without the need for real partitions. A slight change of tint or a brighter/dimmer light can spell the difference between the main office and the meeting room.

Late hours are a common coordinate for most workplaces. Keeping the lights on in the entire floor for the sake of an employee who is doing overtime work is a waste of resources.

Thus, each area of the office should be allowed to have independent lighting settings for scenarios like the one above.

Handy Hints:

* Each area in the office should have independent lighting settings

* Avoid improperly illuminated areas that can drain productivity

* Small appliances should complement the main lighting fixtures

Source: Sunil Gangwani, Special to Properties

The writer is General Manager, Derby Interiors

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