The influence of lighting temperature and interior color on office space and employees

Within every design project, lighting plays an essential role because its influence can directly affect the psychophysical state of employees. Therefore, we must not neglect this aspect.

Although the overall visual experience does not depend only on ambient lighting, it represents a tool designers use when changing the existing or creating a new office space. Poor quality light can negatively affect vision and cause fatigue, discomfort, migraines, and insomnia in the work team, which successively affects a company's overall productivity.

Good quality light in the office space - ZenQ Designs


Although in most cases, this problem is based on a lack of light, inadequate intense lighting could further aggravate it. When choosing a light for office rooms, the main criterion is that artificial lighting should be the closest to daylight.

LED lamps provide the most significant opportunity to fulfill that goal. The benefits of using this type of lighting are numerous. Among the newest light solutions, there is the ability to manage the spectral composition of the light, which allows the color of the artificial light to be matched with the color changes of the daylight.

Light color temperature and worker productivity

With the advent of LED lighting, the possibility of adjusting the color temperature of the light also appeared. In the absence of daylight in the building, both during the day and at night, the feeling of subjective comfort or discomfort within the work team can largely depend on the quality of the lighting and the color temperature of the light it emits. The color temperature in the office space is determined solely from a functional point of view, not from a design point of view.

The cool temperature of the light in the meeting room - ZenQ Designs


The warm temperature of the light leads the body to relaxation and even sleepiness due to the increased secretion of the hormone melatonin. These lighting shades can be used in waiting rooms, relaxation areas, or kitchenettes.

On the other hand, the cold temperature of the light contributes to better concentration and perception. Still, it will gradually stimulate the tension of the nervous system, so its use is not recommended in offices where workers spend most of the day but in meeting rooms or rooms where specific projects are discussed.

However, when we talk about the workrooms where workers spend most of their day, it is necessary to illuminate them following the light temperature closest to the daytime source so that it does not harm their activity and alertness. As we know, the intensity and temperature of daylight change in different parts of the day; therefore, the most optimal solution would be to equip your office space with the innovative concept of Human Centric Lighting, if there is a possibility for it.

Natural cycle in the business environment

With this lighting concept, you may mimic the natural cycle of daylight and the employee's circadian rhythm by changing the light's intensity and color. Their employees and at the same time about the overall productivity of the work team, modern companies have started equipping their premises with intelligent lighting systems. This tendency is also followed by the innovative lamps of our company, such as the free-standing Post-Modern LED Floor Lamp, where the intensity and color of the light can be regulated and equipped with a multisensor for detecting the presence in the space, which enables energy saving. Natural cycle in the business environment

If there is no possibility of equipping office premises with adjustable lighting, the optimal temperature for lighting these work surfaces is neutral white.

A significant deviation from this lighting temperature can significantly affect the reduction of the working abilities of employees.

A room with the ability to adjust the intensity and color of the light - ZenQ Designs


Shaping the office space with the help of light and colors

Lighting is the most robust tool for creating the desired atmosphere and mood. Combined with carefully designed color solutions, it can have an additional positive effect on the work environment.

When designing lighting, we must also pay attention to how a specific color temperature of the light can affect the change in the color of the interior walls, as well as the overall visual experience within a business unit.

Warm colors in the interior in combination with cold light can never look harmonious, as cold colors in the interior in combination with warm light. On the other hand, the darker the walls of the office space, the smaller the room appears. To visually expand the space, it is necessary to use lighter tones.

White walls and lighting in blue tones can significantly contribute to the visual increase of the space and fill the room with "air."

However, using only white color in the office creates an impression of impersonality and coldness. To design larger work surfaces, we could recommend using two primary colors. Therefore, if we choose white as the primary color in our rooms, it would be advisable to add one or two shades of another color to it, including the colors of the furniture.

The psychological aspect of colors

When designing workplaces, it is essential to look at the impact of particular colors on the psychological aspect of employees, how they can be combined with lighting, in terms of its intensity, as well as the warm and cold spectrum. A whole branch of science called "color psychology" studies precisely the influence of color on the human psyche. We can get a completely wrong effect with the incorrect combination of lighting and colors.

Gray color, although neutral, can encourage a state of boredom and contribute to the loss of motivation and interest. According to psychologists, black, dark blue, and dark purple colors are also not the best choice for furnishing the office because they can cause a state of depression among employees. Also, increasing the intensity of artificial lighting in rooms like these would not be very helpful, while on the other hand, it would cause a lot of energy consumption.

It has been proven that bright colors irritate the nervous system, which makes people tired quickly, and too intense lighting can cause headaches. For this reason, it is necessary to choose halftones, which, on the other hand, influence the increase of motivation and the general efficiency of workers.

Business meeting room with colorful decor furniture - ZenQ Designs


Research by scientific agencies

In research conducted by NASA, and on which further research on the psychological impact of color on people staying indoors, the effect of white, red, and blue-green pastel variants of interior colors were investigated. According to this experiment's results, the lowest labor productivity coefficient was in the office painted exclusively white of the three listed variants.

Another variant, the bright red in the reports, is characterized as a color that creates a visually unpleasant and restricted environment among employees and does not bring high productivity. The third variant confirmed NASA's predictions that in a room painted in a light blue-green shade, workers' productivity would increase and the feeling of ease employees while staying in it.

From space to the office

Relying on this and numerous other studies, many interior designers resort to the last variant when choosing color solutions for office buildings. The light blue shade occupies a leading position in interior design. It is responsible for activating the parts of the brain accountable for assimilating new information and establishing business contacts. On the other hand, the color green, known for its positive effect on the central nervous system and relaxation of the eye muscles, can contribute to the productivity of workers who spend most of the day at their computers. It is also an ideal choice for furnishing restrooms. 

Suppose we deviate from the most optimal neutral white lighting temperature in rooms painted with these shades and move it towards the blue spectrum. It is essential to know that in that case, it will emphasize the intensity and strength of colors such as light blue and dark blue, while the green color will be given this light temperature emerald shade.

In addition to blue and green, yellow and beige colors are suitable for most wall surfaces. Using bright colors for columns or walls of smaller areas will bring a change and break the boredom. However, it is not advisable to use them on walls with windows because of the sharp contrast with natural light, especially if that wall faces directly toward the employees.

When we talk about the color yellow, we can say that it improves creativity, creates an optimistic and bright mood, and stimulates the emergence of new ideas. However, if you still opt for a standard and neutral variant, the beige color is the ideal solution for you.

Working area in modern office with carpet floor and meeting room yellow and gray color - ZenQ Designs


However, when we talk about warm shades of the interior, one should be careful when combining them with the color temperature of the lighting. As we have already mentioned, it is not recommended to combine warm colors with the lighting of cold tones. This combination will mute them by bringing a warm color like orange closer to brown, while the yellow color will take on greenish tones. In this case, the neutral white variant is the safest choice of lighting color.

A carefully created environment where workers feel comfortable is a reasonable basis for spreading a positive atmosphere within the work team and strengthening the desire for progress. It is crucial to choose design solutions that will reduce all risk factors of workers' health problems to a minimum.

When choosing light, temperature, and intensity, we must pay special attention to the room's purpose and the effect we want to achieve with it. By taking care of our employees, we also take care of our company because their gratitude will be measured by the high level of productivity of the entire team.

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