With temperatures set to reach 30 degrees in the UK next week it’s easy to make the decision to fold down the laptop and take a trip down to the beach or pump up the paddling pool. But with the hot weather set to last for a few weeks the heat is here for the long haul and we’re going to need to look for ways to live with it. Or at least try to make the office seem a bit more bearable.
Drink Lots Of Water
The first tip isn’t specifically for the office but something that will make your days a lot easier. Stay hydrated! The NHS advise that people should be drinking between 6 – 8 glasses of water a day (or even more when the weather is hot). Keep a bottle of water at your desk so that you can take regular sips throughout the day. Why not keep a spare bottle in the office fridge so you can swap them over from time to time and always have easy access to a cold refreshing drink.
Keep it Covered
When the temperature starts to rise it’s easy for people to start reducing layers in order to keep themselves cool. But a great way to help keep rooms cool during the day is by trying to keep windows covered. Ideally keep blinds or curtains drawn all day to limit the amount of sunlight getting through the windows and heating up the room.
Adapt the Work Day
This may not be suitable for all organisations and job roles but where it is possible consider letting your staff work a more flexible schedule. This means they can avoid having to commute into the office in the blistering heat. Especially in locations where a lot of staff are using public transport like City Centres. Did you know the London Central Line regularly reaches average temperatures of over 30 degrees and that’s just an regular July day. Not the heatwave we are currently experiencing.
Ensure Employees are Comfortable
The obvious solution to keeping the office cool during a heatwave would be to have an air conditioning in place. But these systems are costly to install and can’t be put in at a moments notice. So what other things can you do to try and keep employees comfortable when the office is hot, hot, hot? Create an ergonomic working area but using something like a monitor arm or posture focused chair. This will mean less strain and movement while sat at your desk. Fans can be places strategically around rooms and corridors to try and keep cool air flowing. Make sure everyone has access to safe drinking water and minimise the need for any tasks that involve manual labour (like heavy lifting).
Loosen up the Dress Code
The climate in the UK means that in the summer it’s not just hot, it’s humid too. Why not consider loosening the office dress code while the temperatures are reaching record highs to help staff keep cool and comfortable in the office. Everyone is in the same boat and it’s unlikely customers or visitors are going to be put off with some slightly relaxed style choices in the workplace. We’re all human after all.
Hopefully you’ll find a few of these tips useful to help keep yourself and your staff cool in the office this Summer.