What Barmy Weather We’re Having

thermostatWell, it’s true to say that the majority of the UK has experienced some gloriously barmy weather lately. Great if you’re on annual leave, but not so great if you’re having to work.

We recently conducted a Health & Safety survey for one of our clients, and what came through from many of the comments responding to the question “What 5 things would make your working environment better?” was the office temperature.

Now, regardless of the weather outside, there will always be some issue amongst workers with how hot or how cold the workplace should be. Frustrations relating to these workplace temperature issues can easily become more than just an annoyance when it impacts on the overall employee engagement and productivity levels of employees.

A number of studies have been conducted to ascertain what the workplace temperature should be to attain optimal employee engagement and productivity across workforces. The majority of research has shown that temperatures of between 70 and 73 degrees Fahrenheit (21 to 23 degrees Celsius) provide for the best air temperature for maximum worker engagement and productivity.

However, as both the HSE (Health & Safety Executive) and ACAS (Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service) advise, it’s not just about the temperature, but thermal comfort.

Other factors impact on how cold or warm you feel, for example, personal preference, what you wear in the workplace, the type of work you do, ventilation and humidity levels and even age and your BMI (body mass index) can affect your thermal comfort.

Whilst there are no absolute legal requirements when it comes to maximum temperatures in the workplace, employers do have a duty to ensure their workplace provides reasonable comfort. Indeed, if employee engagement and productivity levels are compromised due to temperature issues, it would be prudent of any employer to put measures in place to make the workplace as comfortable as possible.

The HSE have some sound ideas as to what employers can do to control the thermal comfort of their people, and some are very simple.  Implementing these suggested measures should ensure employers have a happy, comfortable, engaged and productive set of employees.

If you would like more information on how to increase employee engagement and productivity levels in your organisation, then why not give us a call on +44 (0)1255 850051 or  contact us via our website, we’d love to hear from you.