Why Great Lighting Design Matters
As everyone slowly returns to the office, rightly so, the number one thought on every building owner's mind is how to keep occupants safe. But is that all they should be thinking about?
While keeping offices clean and encouraging social distancing should remain a top priority, we also have to remember the coronavirus pandemic has impacted employee mood and drive. Now is the time for owners to creatively think of ways to make the office a more comfortable and productive space that promotes both employee health and well-being.
One way to build a positive, healthy office environment is to focus on lighting, specifically aiming on delivering as much natural light as possible, while also having high-efficiency LED lighting for when it gets dark.
Let’s take a closer look at why great lighting design matters.
There are numerous reasons for having a good lighting design, but for this blog, we will group them into three core categories.
Health and well-being
Can you believe that the number one office perk people want is natural light? That’s right, according to a survey by Future Workplace called “The Employee Experience,” employees crave natural lighting and a view far more than benefits like on-site cafeterias, fitness centers and even premium perks like on-site child care.
This may be due to the fact that sunlight causes our brains to produce serotonin, sometimes known as the happy chemical. This magical hormone leaves us feeling more energized, happy and well-rested, while fighting and reducing stress, anxiety, depression and seasonal affective disorder (SAD).
A study by Dr. Alan Hedge, a workplace design expert and professor at Cornell University, also found that natural light has been shown to decrease eyestrain among employees by 51%, drowsiness by 56% and headaches by 63%. And who’s wouldn’t like that?
He also found that a well-regulated office environment that significantly improves health and wellness among workers, leads to productivity gains. Talk about a win, win!
Energy reduction and savings
Sunlight is a freely available natural resource, and by utilizing energy-efficient daylighting systems properly, substantial energy savings can happen.
Did you know electric lighting accounts for 35% to 50% of the total electrical energy consumption in commercial buildings? By generating waste heat, this lighting also adds to the loads imposed on a building’s mechanical cooling equipment. The energy savings from reduced electric lighting through the use of proper daylighting strategies can directly reduce building cooling energy usage by an additional 10% to 20% and can reduce up to ⅓ of total building energy costs. Additionally, spaces outfitted with daylight-sensing controls can reduce the energy used for electric lighting by 20% to 60%. And who wouldn’t love all these savings?
If you had the choice between working in a room lit by natural light, or one lit by fluorescent bulbs, which would you choose? Most of us would prefer the former. This is because not only does natural lighting make us feel better (as discussed above), but a good daylighting design can also inspire us by enhancing architectural features in a special way, infusing emotion and completely transforming a space. And who doesn’t need a little inspiration now and then?
The Secret Ingredient for a Happy, Healthy Workplace.
The new Solatube Integrated LED Light Kit keeps offices looking their best and shining bright. The all-in-one system uses the integration of natural light and traditional electric light from a single fixture for a cleaner, aesthetically pleasing ceiling appearance and nighttime illumination.
It works by harnessing the sun’s (free) natural light during the day — giving everyone their daily dose of natural light — and offers cost-and energy-efficient LED lighting at night.
In addition, the high-efficiency LED lighting system includes a dimming option that can be paired with manual and automated dimming controls, which is perfect for offices and schools where lighting control and comfort is important.
If you want to learn more about this intelligent fusion of natural light and LED lighting and how to maximize natural light in your commercial workspace, you can call 888.SOLATUBE to set up a free consultation or visit Solatube.com/commercial to find your local distributor.