workstation lighting

Workstation Lighting: 4 Tips to Consider

If you’re worried that your employees don’t get enough light as they work, you’re likely right. It turns out that around 68% of employees aren’t satisfied with the lighting at work.

The real kicker is that the right lighting reduces stress and improves productivity. So the next time you’re looking to boost employee morale, it’s worth the time to review the workstation lighting.

So let’s jump right in and see what you can do to improve things on the lighting front.

Before Workstation Lighting Use Enough Light Overall

Before you start worrying about workstation lighting, you need to worry about overall lighting. Working in insufficient light increases eye strain, which can trigger headaches and migraines.

Employees with headaches and migraines are, by definition, less happy and productive.

You can use a basic formula for a rough estimate of how much light you need in a given room:

Length of the room x width of the room x 1.5 = total watts needed

Use Layered Workstation Lighting

Layered lighting aims to create light balance in the room. It consists of three layers:

  • ambient
  • decorative
  • task

Think of it like a cake.

The ambient light is the cake itself. It offers foundational lighting for the whole room.

Decorative light is the first layer of frosting. It draws attention to features in a room, like highlighting art on the wall.

Task lighting is the frosting flowers and lettering on a cake. It happens at the workstation itself. It might take the form of a hanging fixture or desk lamp.

The benefit of layered lighting is that helps accommodate all employees. Younger workers who need less light can leave desk lamps off. Older workers who benefit from additional light can turn them on.

Limit Screen Glare

For any employee that must look at a computer screen all day, glare becomes a real issue. It contributes to eye strain and it’s distracting. Yet, desks frequently get positioned so that every screen shows glare.

Whenever possible, position desks to limit screen glare from windows and overhead lights. Provide desk lamps that offer either diffuse light or directional lighting. Both let employees avoid screen glare.

Offer Controllable Lights

It’s a basic truth that no decision makes everyone happy and it applies to lighting. The best that most employers can manage is striving for a middle ground. Smart light bulbs change that.

Smart bulbs are sophisticated LED bulbs and typically controlled via WiFi. Not only do they offer granular control of brightness, but some let you change the color temperature. This lets employees customize their workstation lighting.

Parting Thoughts

Overall lighting and workstation lighting affects your employees.

Get the lighting right and it helps boost productivity. Get it wrong and you may send employees home with migraines.

Start by providing enough light overall using the formula provided above. Layered lighting balances the room light and gives employees some light control at their workstations.

Careful positioning of desks and proper lamp selection reduces screen glare. Smart bulbs let employees develop a custom lighting situation.

CBMC Lighting Solutions offers lighting design, site lighting and interior lighting services to businesses. For more information about our services, contact us today.