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Spring Cleaning at the Office

It’s that time of year when we all suddenly feel a strange urge to clean. Even if cleaning isn’t one of your talents, spring is a great time to put on the rubber gloves and give it a go. You’ll probably clean your home, but what about the office?

Office spaces can become very dirty and disorganized, so it’s necessary to set aside some time to clean your workspace. In this guide, we’ll discuss some office spring cleaning tips to help you get started. Learn how to refresh your office with a new layout, furniture and decor, so your employees can enjoy a productive and attractive environment.

Benefits of Cleaning and Re-Organizing Your Office and Workstations

Let’s face it — most people do not enjoy cleaning. Deep cleaning and organizing take time and resources, so you probably want to understand why you’re investing in a cleaner, better-organized office space. A sparkling environment is essential to improving both your whole office and your employees’ workstations. Consider these five major benefits of a clean office space:

1. Higher Rates of Focus and Productivity

There are definite mental benefits of an organized office space. You’ve probably noticed you can focus and accomplish more tasks when you’re surrounded by cleanliness and order rather than chaos. Multiple scientific studies have confirmed this reality. Being surrounded by disorganization is a distraction that continually eats away at our cognitive resources, hampering our focusing ability. A clean, decluttered environment fosters productivity and concentration, which can also boost employee morale and help your company thrive.

2. Lower Levels of Stress

In addition to causing a distraction, a messy environment can create stress for employees. Workplace stress is an all-too-common problem for workers today, and one source can be the work setting. On top of other possible origins of strain, a chaotic work environment is sure to contribute to the tension.

Alternatively, a clean, well-organized office is far more serene and can improve employees’ moods and calm anxieties. Keeping your office’s layout and decor up-to-date can also create an enjoyable working environment for employees.

3. Safer Environments

A well-organized and clutter-free office is also safer to navigate. Employees shouldn’t feel like they’re moving through an obstacle course while they’re at work. They are less likely to trip over cords, be struck by a falling stack of books or suffer other preventable accidents when they’re in an organized environment. Every employer wants to protect their employees and avoid workers’ compensation claims, so increasing your workplace’s safety should be reason enough to do some spring cleaning and re-organizing.

4. Healthier Environments

A clean environment is also a healthier one. Dust and dirt can accumulate over time and negatively affect indoor air quality, which can contribute to problems like fatigue, headaches, difficulty concentrating and more. Removing dust and dirt will allow your employees to breathe easier, especially those with allergies or asthma.

Furthermore, regularly disinfecting surfaces can prevent the spread of illness via bacteria and viruses. Employers should always want to keep their employees healthy, especially since out-of-commission workers cost companies financially.

5. Stronger First Impressions

You probably clean, organize and decorate your home for yourself, but also to make the right impression with guests. The same should be true for your office. Whether it’s a job candidate coming in for an interview, a business partner attending a meeting, a journalist coming to take a statement or anyone else, you want their first impression of your business to be positive.

Walking through a beautiful, well-organized office space as opposed to a chaotic, messy one will impart a strong first impression of your company.

How to Clean Your Office Space

One of the easiest ways to clean your office is to break it down by its main components. If your employees are working together to clean your space, you can assign teams or individuals to one of these areas:

  • Furniture: Your office furniture likely gets a lot of use and not much cleaning, so spring cleaning is a great time to refresh it. Wipe down hard surfaces like wood and plastic with a disinfecting cleaner. For upholstered furniture, use a vacuum hose to remove debris and grime. Then, use a cleaning foam and brush to scrub the upholstery — or try a steam cleaner.
  • Cubicles: If you have fabric panel cubicles in your office, you may want to add cubicle spring cleaning to your checklist. In some cases, you can use a mild cleaner or a steam cleaner to wipe down panels on your own.
  • Floor: Floors should receive regular cleanings throughout the year. Vacuum the floor, and then use the appropriate cleaning method, depending on the flooring type. Some floors should be waxed once a year, so this is a great time to re-wax them to keep them looking shiny and smooth.
  • Windows: Natural light brightens up any office, but you don’t want that light streaming through a smudgy, dirty window. You can keep the insides clean with a squeegee and a detergent solution, which can work better than glass cleaner and paper towels.
  • Electronics: Every germ or residue on employees’ hands can accumulate on buttons and surfaces — especially shared electronics, like copiers and fax machines. That’s why any spring cleaning checklist should include wiping down electronics with a disinfectant. You may also want to use an air duster on any crevices.
  • Kitchen: If your office includes a kitchen area or a break room with kitchen appliances, you’ll want to give these areas a deep clean periodically. Throw away old food items, wipe down the inside of the refrigerator, clean out the microwave, disinfect countertops and wipe down appliances like coffee pots.

How to Clean Your Office Cubicle

In addition to cleaning the office as a whole, employees should take some time to clean their workstations. A tidy space makes you feel refreshed, and it also helps you maintain respect for your cubicle neighbors who may not be fond of disorganization. Here are some basic tips for cleaning your office cubicles:

  • Declutter: Spring cleaning is the perfect time to throw away or donate items cluttering your desk. These objects can be distracting, which doesn’t help you do your job. The things you toss should include any junk you may be harboring in your drawers and storage cabinets.
  • Rearrange: You may also want to rearrange items in your workstation. A good rule of thumb is to keep essential things you use every day at arm’s length. Store other tools on shelves or in drawers, but be sure to have an organized storage structure. Try re-organizing your files, books or other belongings.
  • Dust: Dust the tops of filing cabinets, picture frames and any other surfaces in your workstation that may be harboring a thick layer of dust. You may also want to clean your electronics with an air duster, especially if you can see particles and grime in crevices, like around your keyboard keys.
  • Disinfect: Did you know the average desk has 400 times more germs than a toilet seat? This statistic alone should be enough to prompt your employees to break out the disinfecting wipes and give their whole desk, including their keyboard, mouse and anything they touch, a good cleaning.

How to Organize Your Office

Re-organizing may seem like a great idea, but how do you organize an office? Rather than trying to rearrange your office as a whole, most of your organization should take place at individual workstations. Doing this will lead to an office that is much better-coordinated overall. Here’s how to organize your workstation and shared spaces:

1. Digital Files

In the past, office organization focused on filing papers, but today, we store more and more of our documents and files on our computers, the cloud and shared servers. If your computer desktop is covered with file icons or you have trouble finding the reports you need, it’s time to do some digital organization.

Create clearly labeled file folders and give documents easy, searchable names. Also, delete outdated versions of records you no longer need, so they don’t cause confusion and clutter your digital storage.

2. Email Inbox

Since so much of workplace communication now occurs through email, inboxes can easily become some of the most disorganized places in your office. By using modern tools, you can create different categories and folders to divide emails by topic, project or purpose. Organizing your inbox makes it easier to find what you’re looking for. You should also take advantage of tools like starring, flagging and archiving.

3. Paper Files

While some businesses are trying to go paperless, paper files are still commonplace in most offices. Memos, meeting notes and more can pile up, often on our desks rather than in neatly organized filing cabinets. If your workspace looks like you’re trying to play Jenga with a stack of papers, go through every single one, tossing whatever you can and carefully filing the ones you need to keep. In some instances, you may want to use binders to keep papers together rather than file folders.

4. Office Supplies

If your business has an office supply cabinet, make sure it’s well-organized so employees can get to what they need. Consider using small plastic bins or drawers to store items like pens, paper clips, staples and the like. In your own desk drawers, use a divider tray to separate different types of supplies. Resist the urge to create a junk drawer where you have to untangle a mess of items just to get to that one thumbtack you need.

Consider a Change of Scenery

Spring cleaning time is also an excellent opportunity to consider changing up your work environment. Why is change important in the workplace? The same reason it’s important in our homes.

Have you ever looked around your living room and felt a sudden urge to switch out those old-fashioned chairs, move your couch to a different wall or try a new paint color? Many of us naturally get bored with the same old surroundings over time and tend to enjoy a refreshing transformation — it can help us feel revitalized. Coming in every day to that same outdated office furniture and decor — along with that all-too-familiar layout — can get old.

A great way to keep your office looking its best is to refresh your workspace. You should critically consider whether your current setup makes the most sense for your team’s workflow. The best office layout should encourage productivity. See if you can reconfigure your design for a change of scenery, which can help employees do their jobs more efficiently.

Maybe you’ve been surrounded by decades-old pieces for so long that you didn’t realize office furniture has come a long way in recent years. Everything from cubicles to desks to chairs is available in innovative new designs. Sure, you’ll still find lackluster furniture from some dealers, but companies like Arnold’s Office Furniture are refusing to settle. We always aim to raise the bar on modern office furnishings.

You can also give your whole office a facelift by updating the decor. Maybe it’s time to replace that stained carpet, put a fresh paint color on the walls and replace tired wall hangings with new ones. Check out our design tips to help you make your office space more inspiring — and remember to choose furniture and decor that’s consistent with your branding. Office organization ideas will come naturally to you once you identify the kind of design you’re going for.

Spring Clean Your Office With New Cubicles From Arnold’s Office Furniture

We hope these office cleaning ideas have inspired you to renew and refresh your office this spring. If you want new cubicles, Arnold’s Office Furniture has great options to choose from, including Sunline sliding cubicles, which are exceptionally easy to put together and reconfigure whenever you need a new look. We can also outfit your office with other types of furniture, such as desks, chairs, workstations and more.

We’ve been at the forefront of the office furniture business for over 90 years, offering modern solutions for the contemporary workplace. When you’re tired of your office’s outdated cubicles and furnishings, Arnold’s can match you with the best options available, so your workspace can become a functional, inviting place your employees enjoy.

We also have design services to help you create an ideal custom cubicle layout for your office. Contact us today to learn more.

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