The concept of a circular economy has gained significant traction in recent years as a sustainable alternative to the traditional linear model of “take-make-dispose.” The circular economy aims to keep resources in use for as long as possible by designing out waste and pollution, keeping products and materials in use, and regenerating natural systems. This approach has far-reaching implications for businesses and industries, including the role it can play in creating sustainable workplaces.

The traditional linear economy model produces vast amounts of waste and pollution, putting a significant strain on natural resources and ecosystems. In contrast, a circular economy emphasises the importance of sustainable resource management, encouraging businesses to consider the full life cycle of products, including design, production, use, and disposal. By doing so, it can reduce the amount of waste generated, create new value streams, and reduce the environmental impact of production and consumption.

One of the key benefits of adopting circular economy principles in the workplace is the potential to create more sustainable operations. By implementing closed-loop systems that promote the reuse, refurbishment, and recycling of materials, businesses can reduce their reliance on virgin resources and minimise waste. This can have a significant impact on both the environment and the bottom line, as reducing waste can lead to cost savings and improved efficiency.

Additionally, adopting circular practices in the workplace can create new business opportunities and revenue streams. For example, businesses can explore product-as-a-service models, where customers pay for access to products instead of owning them, leading to longer product lifetimes and reduced waste. Another example is exploring remanufacturing and refurbishment services, which can create new jobs and extend the life of products while reducing waste and lowering costs.

The circular economy also offers opportunities for collaboration and partnership, both within and between businesses. Adopting circular practices requires a shift in mindset and a willingness to work together to create closed-loop systems. This can lead to collaborations with suppliers, customers, and other stakeholders to improve the sustainability of supply chains and reduce environmental impact.

Circular economy principles can be applied in various ways in the workplace, from product design to waste management. Here are some of the ways that the circular economy can help create sustainable workplaces:

  • Product Design: The principles of circular economy can be applied to the design of products to make them more sustainable. This can be done by using materials that can be easily reused, recycled, or biodegraded at the end of their life cycle. Designing products for durability, repairability, and upgradability can also extend their lifespan.
  • Material Efficiency: Adopting circular economy principles can also help in reducing the amount of material needed to produce a product. By using materials efficiently, businesses can reduce their input costs while simultaneously reducing their environmental impact. For example, using digital technologies to minimise paper usage, or redesigning product packaging to use less material.
  • Waste Reduction: Reducing the amount of waste generated by businesses can be achieved by implementing waste reduction strategies such as recycling and composting, using closed-loop systems for water and other resources, and implementing sustainable supply chain practices.
  • Energy Efficiency: Improving energy efficiency in the workplace can be done by investing in energy-efficient equipment, implementing energy management systems, and promoting energy-saving behaviors among employees.
  • Resource Recovery: Businesses can adopt strategies such as industrial symbiosis, where waste materials from one company are used as inputs by another company. This can create a closed-loop system where waste is turned into a valuable resource.

The circular economy offers a promising pathway for creating more sustainable workplaces. By adopting circular principles, businesses can reduce waste, conserve resources, and create new revenue streams, while also contributing to a more sustainable and resilient future. As such, it is important for businesses to recognise the potential of the circular economy and to actively explore how it can be integrated into their operations to create more sustainable and resilient workplaces.

Lighting design is crucial to creating a productive and comfortable work environment. The right lighting can reduce eye strain and fatigue, improve mood and productivity, and even increase safety. In this list, we’ve compiled some top tips for workplace lighting design, including considerations for task lighting, natural light, appropriate fixtures, and lighting controls. By following these tips, you can create a lighting design that meets the specific needs of your workspace and helps your employees to work comfortably and efficiently.

Here are some top tips for workplace lighting design:

1. Consider the task: Different tasks require different lighting levels and colour temperatures. For example, reading requires brighter light than general office work. Lighting should be designed around the specific tasks that are performed in the workspace.

2. Use natural light: Whenever possible, incorporate natural light into the workspace. Natural light has been shown to improve mood and productivity. Use windows or skylights to bring in natural light.

3. Use appropriate fixtures: Choose fixtures that provide the appropriate light levels and colour temperatures for the workspace. LED lighting is an energy-efficient and long-lasting option.

4. Use task lighting: Task lighting can help reduce eye strain and fatigue by providing focused light where it is needed. Use adjustable lamps or fixtures that can be directed to the task at hand.

5. Avoid glare: Glare can cause eye strain and discomfort. Use fixtures with glare-free lenses, shades and low glare lighting. Avoid positioning fixtures where they can cause reflections on computer screens.

6. Consider the colour rendering index (CRI): CRI measures how well a light source reveals the true colours of objects. Choose lighting with a high CRI for tasks that require colour accuracy.

7. Use lighting controls: Lighting controls can help reduce energy use and provide flexibility in lighting levels. Use dimmers, timers, or occupancy sensors to control lighting. Smart lighting can be integrated with building management systems for a range of control options and powered over ethernet. Check out our blog on Smart Lighting powered over ethernet.

8. Test the lighting design: Once the lighting design is in place, test it with workers to ensure it meets their needs. Adjust as necessary to optimise the lighting for the specific workspace.

If you need any help and advice with lighting design Contact Us today.

The way we design our workplace has a direct impact on our wellbeing and productivity. In fact, studies have shown that poor workplace design can lead to a whole host of problems, including neck pain, back pain, and eye strain. So, how can we design our workspaces in a way that promotes wellbeing and productivity? Let’s look at a few key factors.

Workplace Lighting

One of the most important factors in workplace design is lighting. Poor lighting can cause a whole host of problems, including eye strain, headaches, and even migraines. When designing your workplace, make sure to take advantage of natural light as much as possible. Natural light is important for your mental and physical health. Try to position desks near to windows to allow plenty of natural light in. However natural light alone is not enough to properly light a workspace, so make sure to invest in high-quality low glare lighting that won’t cause any strain on employees’ eyes.

Studies have shown that exposure to natural light, or light that mimics natural light, can improve mood, alertness, and productivity. By using circadian lighting, workplaces can create a more natural and healthy environment, which can lead to improved employee wellbeing and productivity.

Circadian lighting can also help to mitigate the negative effects of artificial light, which can disrupt the body’s circadian rhythm and lead to problems such as insomnia and fatigue. By using circadian lighting in the workplace, employees may be better able to regulate their sleep and wake cycles, leading to improved sleep quality and overall wellbeing.


Another important factor to consider when designing your workplace is ergonomics. Ergonomic furniture and equipment are designed to minimise strain on your body so that you can work comfortably for long periods of time. When choosing furniture for your workplace, look for pieces that are adjustable so that you can find the perfect fit for your body. And be sure to invest in a good quality office chair that provides support for your back and neck.

Colour Scheme

Believe it or not, the colours in your workspace can also have an impact on your wellbeing and productivity. Certain colours are known to promote relaxation while others can help to increase focus and concentration. When choosing a colour scheme for your workspace, opt for calming colours like blue or green. And if you want to boost productivity, try adding a pop of yellow or orange into the mix.

Avoid Distractions

Acoustic solutions can play a significant role in promoting workplace wellbeing and productivity. Poor acoustics in a workspace can lead to high levels of noise and distractions, which can negatively impact employee health, wellbeing, and productivity. Acoustic solutions such as sound-absorbing materials, wall panels, and ceiling tiles can help to reduce noise levels in the workplace. This can create a more peaceful and less distracting environment, helping employees to concentrate, reduce stress and work more efficiently.

Incorporate Biophilia

Plants have been shown to reduce stress levels in the workplace. Exposure to natural elements, such as plants, has a calming effect on the mind and can help to reduce feelings of stress and anxiety. Studies have shown that plants can increase productivity in the workplace. A study conducted by the University of Exeter found that when plants were introduced into an office environment, employee productivity increased by 15%.

Plants are natural air purifiers and can help to improve the quality of air in the workplace. They absorb pollutants and toxins, helping to create a cleaner and healthier environment for teams. Plants can help to enhance the mood of employees. The presence of greenery can create a more pleasant and uplifting environment, helping to boost morale and mood.

Take Breaks

Taking breaks is essential for maintaining productivity and avoiding burnout. Office workers need to take regular breaks to stretch, move around, and recharge. the workplace should have specific areas for employees to rest and relax. Providing spaces for employees to take a break and recharge can have significant benefits for employee wellbeing and productivity.

Employees need to take breaks throughout the day to help reduce stress levels. Offering dedicated spaces for rest and relaxation, such as break rooms or outdoor seating areas, can provide employees with a quiet and calming environment to decompress and recharge.

Taking breaks throughout the day can increase productivity. Studies have shown that taking short breaks can help employees to refocus and increase their overall productivity levels. Having designated areas for rest and relaxation can help to improve the overall wellbeing of employees. Taking time to rest and recharge can lead to better physical and mental health, which can translate into improved job performance.

The way we design our workspaces has a direct impact on our wellbeing and productivity. By keeping these key factors in mind, you can create a workspace that promotes both wellbeing and productivity.

Light colour temperature is a measure of the hue or “warmth” of a light source. It is measured in units called Kelvin (K) and represents the temperature of an ideal blackbody radiator that emits light of a similar hue to the light source being measured.

Below is an image showing the visible colours in the spectrum, with their wavelengths. Shorter wavelengths are on the left-hand side and start at ultraviolet – very popular in nightclubs back in the 1990s! As the wavelengths increase the colours move through the visible colour range to red and then infrared which we are unable to see.

The image shows the colour at each wavelength and not the result of a mixture of wavelengths, so there are no shades of colours in the chart, and no white either.

Because of this the CIE (International Commission on Illumination, abbreviated from its French title) researched the colour space (shown in the image below), showing all visible colours. The wavelengths are shown around the outside, and the colours merge towards the middle where they are shown as white. It is placed on a grid background so that all colours can be referenced by coordinates if required.

In addition to white, the chart shows the “black body locus” – the black line that you can see curving through the middle of the chart.

The black body locus is a line through the colours that a black body (we can think of it as a lump of metal, for ease of understanding) will go through as it’s heated up.

As it warms up, it will start off a dull red, before moving through to orange, yellow, white and then blue hot. This is what we refer to as colour temperature. It feels slightly contradictory, as the lower the value, the warmer (more orange) the light is. The higher the colour temperature, the cooler (bluer) the light is.

Warmer temperatures are on the left-hand side, with a lower kelvin value, cooler colour temperatures are on the right-hand side, with a higher kelvin value.

Lighting guides specify office lighting to be 4000K in the UK – this is perceived as neither warm nor cool, and because of this it is often referred to as “neutral white”.

Some parts of an office may have warmer lighting – breakout spaces for example, as the warmer colours can make an area feel more relaxed and informal.

The change of colour temperature throughout the day, from the warmth of sunrise, through to the cool of midday, then warming up at sunset will be a topic on its own in a future post dealing with circadian lighting. It will cover how we can, and why we may want to, replicate that changing colour temperature with tuneable white luminaires.

We hope you have found this helpful. For any questions or comments, feel free to Contact Us