As a part of our series on Human-centred design, we explore how great design can improve a user’s wellbeing and create a positive working environment.
While tasks and technology can vary between different control rooms, organisations are now creating less stressful and more positive environments.
Productivity and health go hand in hand, as healthier users typically are better engaged with their work.
Following regulations and industry guidance is crucial for a successful control room design, but wellbeing is more than ticking boxes.
To put it simply, we know the effect a good physical space can have on user wellbeing
In our blog about Five things you need to know when designing your control room, there is a lot you can already do that will improve concentration, morale and working practices, such as using proper temperature controls and lighting.
Being able to cater to different body types and workstyles will benefit your team in the long run, including employee retention and operational consistency.
A space based on comfort and functionality will mean that your users can do what they do best, providing long-lasting user comfort. Managing backaches, musculoskeletal issues or just a headache, adaptable workstations will help to alleviate issues that affect control room operators.
The right space
Horizon Consoles can help you create the perfect space, including optimal sizing and modifications for your team. From the placement of technology and screens to the light quality, we can also advise on many factors that can improve overall wellbeing in the workplace.
A productive space should be the goal mentally as well as physically for your team.
According to the Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure UK, most work that happens in control rooms are based around mental tasks such as monitoring or analysing information before acting or engaging.
Every sector has its own methodology but always make sure there is a balanced relationship between taking on tasks, the time they take to complete, and mental processing done by the user. Specially designed consoles can help.
Being able to change position with a sit-stand workstation will help with multi-tasking, aid concentration, and actively work to reduce stress. By providing high-quality furniture and tools, you can give users the feeling of autonomy and empowerment.
In our previous blog, we made the point to identify user factors in your space, and many user factors can be mental. Make a point to consult with your team (at least annually) on the quality of their working environment and how it can be improved, including team building and operational concerns.
Try new things
Do not be afraid of trialling new methods, furniture, and equipment to find the right balance. Make users active participants in how they use the space, and they will feel valued.
The task at hand
The world of work is changing, and while the tasks can vary, you have control over how your users can feel at work.
The world of work is changing, and while the tasks can vary, you have control over how your users feel at work.
Focus on creating a stable environment even when the work itself is dynamic.
It is easier to see what a difference the right equipment, furniture, and workplace design can make for users, but mental wellbeing is not so clear cut. Finding the right resources and engaging with your employees is the best place to start establishing a more open culture.
The theme for this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week is loneliness, and the workplace is not exempt, as evidence has proven that even open-plan settings do not lessen the feeling of isolation for some users.
To find the tools and support out there to create a healthier workplace, visit the Mind‘s work website for resources such as ‘How to promote wellbeing and tackle the causes of work-related mental health problems, and their special workplace portal Mental Health at Work.
Creating a work environment is not just a physical space but gives users the ability to feel empowered and be confident in their workplace.