7 Ways Clean Workspace Can Boost Employee Health and Performance

7 min read
Published on 28 June, 2021

In any organisation, an employee's workspace matters a lot. A clean workspace means employees will be motivated to work.
When the desk area is free from cluttered documents , it looks presentable.

What is a clean workspace?

A clean workspace is a tidy area where employees work, leading to productivity and efficiency.

Work environment has two types of desks : one is clean and the other one is untidy. In disorganized desks, there are cluttered documents.

Untidy desks cause uneasiness and anxiety. Especially when employees have to work under tremendous pressure and stress, it can affect their cognitive skills.

Clean Workspace Vs Untidy Workspace

Having a clean workspace creates a positive environment and helps employees increase their focus. In some offices, the most common items that lead to a messy workspace are waste paper, leftover food, used napkins, and cluttered desks.

Cluttered and unorganized workspaces demotivate and distract employees from giving their best.

Thus, the time that could have gone in delving through the junk will be utilized to complete the daily tasks. Employees will improve their concentration and overall performance when they give time to everyday tasks.

The work station
Photo by Gabriel Beaudry / Unsplash

What happens when the workspaces are untidy?

According to a study , it leads to spending a lot of money. Buying cleaning supplies for tidy workspaces can cost a lot. Hence clean and tidy workspaces can cut costs. Approximately 2.5 million dollars are spent because of cluttered workspaces.

When important files and documents are not in place, it negatively impacts employee productivity.

Untidy workspaces create hosts for viruses and germs that can linger on for up to 24 hours. According to researchers, bad hygiene affects employee's health and employees lose almost nine working days per year to sickness.

Untidy workspaces create hosts for viruses and germs that can linger on for up to 24 hours. According to researchers, bad hygiene affects employee's health. Employees lose almost nine working days per year to sickness.


Photo by Robert Bye / Unsplash

Why do employees require a clean workspace?

According to Health studies , the keyboard has 400 times the number of bacteria on a toilet.Germs are spread due to a lack of personal hygiene. Those employees with poor immune systems are likely to fall sick and affect their health.

Poor employee health will also hamper the organization, and the overall profit will suffer. In addition, sick employees will eventually need to stay home and recover.

When workspaces are clean, it brings a sense of professionalism. As a result, more clients will be appealed, and potential business partners are more likely to work with you.

Clean workspaces don't allow viruses and germs to spread over the office desk. Besides,If the employees do not keep their workspaces clean, the environment becomes dirty too.

Organized Blogger Workstation
Photo by Arnel Hasanovic / Unsplash

How to improve the cleanliness of the workspace?

1. Clean office equipment regularly.

Printers and photocopies gather a lot of dust that can affect the productivity of employees. Hence, it is essential to clean them regularly to boost the performance of workers.

2. Encourage employees to clean their desks regularly

When employees have a habit of cleaning their desks, they do not think of making their workspace untidy. Instead of cleaning the desks monthly, employees should clean the desks every alternate day .

As we know, dust accumulates quickly; hence, keeping the desk neat and clean will significantly impact the performance of employees.

3. Create a separate space for personal belongings

Employees should not jumble up their professional work documents with personal belongings. A particular area for personal belongings should be created.

4. Keep a junk tray

Papers and files usually pile up on your desk . It is good to keep a junk tray and place them all at one place.

5. Throw the things that you don’t want

You won’t be needing a project report from 5 years ago? Isn’t it? There will be a lot of unnecessary files similar to these project reports. Recycle what you don’t need.

6. Create a separate space for stationeries

Scissors, pens and staplers , highlighters, pins , paper clips deserve their own spot. Make sure you make space for these items.

7. Put a colour code on your folders

When documents have colour codes it is easier to find them out. For example: You can put red colour code on the important folders, blue colour code on the less important files.

How do clean workspaces benefit employees?

A study was conducted and reported that some students were directed to sit in a clean workspace and a cluttered workspace. They were asked to solve geometry puzzles.

Those students who sat in a clean workspace took less time in solving them than those sitting in a cluttered workspace. Because sitting in a tidy workspace allowed the students to focus more on solving the puzzles and less on the messy surrounding

This entire experiment shows that an untidy workspace distracts the mind, making it difficult to focus on work.

Let us take a look at how clean workspaces boost productivity

1. Increases employee motivation

It is tough to stay motivated all the time. When things are messy in the workspace, the employees do not feel motivated at all.

The disorganization of the workspace creates negativity, which in turn makes the employees lose their motivation.

2. Enhances focus

It is easy to lose focus when you are working. If the workspace is dirty, the employee's attention goes to the disorganized things instead of work.

To keep the employees' focus right on track, ensure that the workspaces prevent them from being distracted by messy things.


Photo by
Mimi Thian / Unsplash

3. Improved happiness

The desk where the employees work matters a lot. When employees have a clean workspace, there are no distractions. Your mind is focused and happy. There is a smooth workflow.

Unsplash Power
Photo by Domenico Loia / Unsplash

Keeping motivational quotes at your desk will help you recharge and feel energetic despite a hectic work schedule.

4. Helps employees to stay active and decrease absenteeism

Unclean workspace affects the health of an employee. Viruses and germs are present everywhere. If not cleaned properly,employee's health will deteriorate and fall sick more often.

To prevent absenteeism, a clean workspace is a must. In addition, keeping a hand sanitizer will prevent the workers from falling sick frequently.


Photo by LinkedIn Sales Solutions / Unsplash

5. Reduces stress and tension

Stress can lead to a lot of things. When things are messy, employees get easily distracted. It eventually leads to a lack of concentration.

Keeping workspaces clean will help the employees get less distracted. As a result, they can avoid facing stress from external factors.

a business woman who is stressed and frustrated
Photo by Elisa Ventur / Unsplash

6. Creates good Impression

They say 'First impression is the last impression". If workspaces are dirty, it leaves a wrong impression about employees. For example, keeping a dustbin near the workspace is a good option. Many times we eat and throw things near the table unconsciously. When there is a dustbin, we don't have to keep it near the table but throw the junk in the dustbin.

7. Enhanced mental stability

Your workspace environment is important. Wherever you are , the environment you are surrounded with will affect you in some mental or physical way.
If you feel that your workspace isn’t beneficial for work, some cleaning will help.

Employees immerse themselves for work when the workspace is clean.
An organized and clean workspace will help you boost mental stability.

Final Thoughts

Every organisation has goals , values and targets that help to contribute to organisational success. They also have their own sense of being healthy and happy.
If there is no room for clean workspaces within the organization, it will affect employee’s work.

Imagine, if you are already surrounded by cluttered files and your boss asks you to find the right file for your work?
Now ,employees will take a lot of time searching those files. If the workspace was organized properly , it wouldn’t have taken much time.

When it comes to clean workspace, the overall performance of employees is appreciable.
They not only meet their targets at the end day, but also have a great impact on employee productivity and engagement.

Ugmonk
Photo by Kari Shea / Unsplash

This article is written by Anangsha Alomyan who is a content marketer at Vantage Circle. Apart from writing, Anangsha plays the piano, acts, raps and does photography. Since childhood, she has been into sports and brought laurels across the country. An adventurer by heart, she loves to explore new routes across the Himalayas. To get in touch, reach out to editor@vantagecircle.com

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