Bob Hall, director at Greenlite Group, says including staff in your new lighting strategy will pay dividends
When installing a new lighting scheme, you’ll no doubt factor in your customers’ needs, the energy saving benefits and cost implications. But there are also huge advantages to be had from consulting your employees, who will be among the most affected by any changes.
Did you know that both dim lighting and harsh lighting rank among the most common workplace complaints, alongside noise, room temperature and those colleagues who insist on eating smelly lunches?
But just as poor lighting can lead to headaches and eye strain, great lighting can aid concentration. It’s also been linked to improved mood and health. With absenteeism costing the UK an estimated £18billion in lost productivity, that’s not to be sniffed at.
At Greenlite, our experience with energy-efficient lighting has also demonstrated that boosting a building’s green credentials can also have a big impact on profitability. In fact, one study found that improving the lighting design led to productivity gains of up to 23%.
So, while you’re in the decision-making phase, consult your team about the current lighting. Ask them to pinpoint anything that’s lacking, or any areas ripe for improvement. As well as giving staff the chance to highlight their own needs; they’ll likely be able to identify any easy energy wins, such as locations where sensors will come into their own. After all, those on the ground will have the most intimate knowledge of the environment.
What’s more, research has shown that productivity can even increase when employees are consulted on business decisions. Being inclusive helps staff feel empowered and boosts morale. It also shows you care about their day-to-day work experience, their safety and fosters a sense of collaboration.
Once your new lighting installation is in place, show your staff how to use the system. Include them in your drive to improve energy efficiency by labelling light switches, so only the necessary areas are illuminated. And if you have a last man out switch, ensure everyone knows to use it. You’ll no doubt find that lower power use and increased people power is a winning combination!