Everything you need to know about Sick Building Syndrome
Installation or alterations of air-conditioning systems is often the single most expensive item in any fit-out project. In addition, customers are often tempted to request value-engineered solutions that fall short of best practice in order to reduce overall spend or to make funds available to areas of the project that are deemed more important.
So how important is a good air-conditioning system?
Good air-conditioning is the most important contributor to your employee’s satisfaction
Over the last 50 years there have been innumerable studies relating environmental conditions in a workplace to productivity. Consider the following:
- In a typical office building the salaries of the staff were found to exceed the cost of building energy, maintenance, annualised construction and rental by a factor of 100
- A study in the US in 1999 indicated that improving indoor climate across the country had the potential to yield up to $200 billion through increased worker productivity. A similar study in Finland suggested the country was losing 2.7 billion euros annually in reduced output due to poor indoor climatic conditions
- A 2004 study by Professor Alan Hedge, PhD, CPE put the cost of poor air-conditioning in a normal office at up to $3 per employee per hour in reduced productivity. Adjusting this figure to current average wages puts the cost in the UK at £2.20/person/hour. This of course, does not take into account losses due to absenteeism which has been identified as significant
Sick building syndrome is a well-known phenomenon that can have a severe impact on productivity. One of the biggest contributors is poor air-conditioning. The HSE have produced a helpful booklet for employers on the subject which can be downloaded here.
The general consensus of all studies is that a well-designed, well maintained, effective air-conditioning system is the single most important contributor towards employee satisfaction and improved performance.
Integra can design and install your air-conditioning system. We’re also experts in all types of mechanical and electrical installation. whatever the nature of your project, contact us to find out how we can help you today.