Offices used to be dreary places with soulless cubicles and tacky carpeting. But thanks to new trends in office design and furniture, more and more offices are turning into places where employees can be more productive while keeping their stress levels in check.

You may be apprehensive about employing radical changes in your workplace, such as open-plan areas and indoor water features. But you won’t need such drastic features to make your office more comfortable. You can make your employees more productive and your workplace less intimidating by employing the following strategies.

The Benefits of Sunlight:

Multiple studies have confirmed that exposure to natural light is an excellent factor in setting the mood. In a study referenced by the Harvard Business Review, 47 percent of workers said they feel exhausted or tired when their offices don’t have natural light sources such as skylights and windows.

Sunlight makes people more energetic and thus more productive. With an ample supply of natural light, you may see fewer employees succumbing to exhaustion and doing off on the job. Enjoy this advantage by keeping natural lighting sources during your workplace’s design phase. Include plenty of windows so employees can enjoy the sun. Just make sure to install shades and blinds so that they don’t suffer from glare.

Fully Stocked Pantries:

No one likes working on an empty stomach, and employees can sometimes be too busy to go out to eat. Speaking of which, by providing your employees with a range of snack options and food in your workplace pantries, you make it unnecessary for them to leave the premises and buy meals.

Good food options for your pantries include a fresh fruit bowl that’s restocked every day or satisfying carbohydrates like muffins and bread. Aside from the ubiquitous coffee and tea, bring some life to your refreshments by getting fruit-flavored water delivered to your office.

Soothing Greenery:

Work can get stressful, whether you’re a new hire or an employee who’s had years to master the job. But few things can be as calming as the sight of natural greenery like plants and shrubs. According to an intensive study, plants’ presence in the office can decrease employee fatigue by as much as 30 percent. Other signs of exhaustion, such as headaches and problems concentrating, could be reduced by approximately 23 percent.

Don’t stop at piddly desk plants. Try getting a row of plants in your public areas like reception or conference rooms. You should also consider green walls, which are installations that cover entire surfaces with moss or similar soothingly verdant plant life.

Create Communal Areas:

Socialization is an integral part of a comfortable workplace. Isolating cubicles are no longer the norm because people realized that they weren’t beneficial to a healthy mentality. Instead, you should provide employees with multiple open areas where they can converse, relax, and enjoy each other’s company. Put comfortable couches, beanbags, or plush rugs to enhance the coziness of these communal spaces.

Workplace comfort is an excellent investment. Not only does making your workplace more welcoming put your employees in a relaxed state, but it also improves their productivity. Keeping employees comfy will help build a better and stronger business.