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Physical Conditions Of An Office


Environment is defined as the factors or forces that affect the office and the determinants of office performance. Office is defined by Denyer (1980) as a channel by which information flow into, out of and around the organization.

Hence, an office environment in modern day is described as office Ergonomics. While ergonomics is the study of the interaction between people and their work environments. In the office, the concept embraces the idea that machines and office products should fit people, not the reverse.

For best results in productivity and comfort, people of different sizes and preferences require different positioning of equipment. In terms of ergonomic design, desks and chairs are the easiest items to adjust to fit a worker’s needs.


The changing needs for office property is being influenced heavily  by  the  universal  adoption   of information  and communications technology:

The vast array of mains and signal cables needs to be managed.
Extra   heat   from   the   equipment   needs   to   be controlled or removed.
New health and safety risks include electrical hazards, sitting positions, eyestrain, lack of breaks and RSI (repetitive strain injury).
Constantly changing business and processes demand flexible communication.

In all working environments the lighting situations needs to be considered. The part 2.2 office environment are as follows:

“Ordinary” visual tasks should be in range 300 to 400 Lux (320 lux) 9task) and 160 lux (background) lumens per square metre.
For more demanding visual tasks, including proof reading and working from poor quality photographs.
Older workers may require stronger lighting.
Options for adjusting lighting include:

Positioning of the monitor to the side of window light and/or in between overhead light source to minimize glare.
Removal or relocation of lighting sources such as one fluorescent from a bank of two.
Clean lights and diffusers regularly. Lights deteriorate with age and accumulate dirt over either the tube or the starter needs replacing

Excess noise may increase staff stress and fatigue. General   noise   may   be   reduced   by   floors.   The recommended decibel range for office work is 55 to 65 dBA.
Hard surfaces such as glass walls or white boards will act to increase the reflection of noise.
Telephone or other conversations can be districting in open plan office.

Temperature, air movement and humidity influence how comfortable an office becomes.
Locating workstations so that the individual is not sitting close to, under, or in front of an air affected by draughts.
The temperature in an office environment should be moderate in order to avoid hazardous.
Air Quality

Some workers may be sensitive to changes in air quality.
Air quality can be affected by activities such as dust from construction work and fumes from. Although it is difficult to establish direct   cause-and-effect relationships between office conditions and such illnesses, some serious ailments can be linked to micro-organisms born in air conditioning    or ventilation systems.
Plant certain houseplants that require low light are especially effective in filtering certain chemicals from the air. Not only are plants used to improve air quality, they can also serve two functional purposes as work dividers and as sound absorbers.

Furniture and Storage

Adequate personal space and storage for staff needs to be considered to prevent fatigue due.
Correct   placement   of  furniture   in   a   work   area ensures staffs are not tempted to twist or reach.
Standing and moving to a position within easy reach of an  object  is  preferable   to  over  stretched   the maximum reach.
Appropriate height and sufficient shelving can also reduce the need to bend or reach excessive height.
Avoid, repeated use of poor spinal postures when sideways reaching and leaning down to the.
Store heavy items e.g. water bottles, reams of paper on shelves around waist level.
Avoid storing frequently used items near floor level or above shoulder height.
4.5kg is the maximum acceptable load to be lifted in the seated position.

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