With the return to the office, health and safety in the workplace has become a priority for companies and employees alike.
Indoor air quality is an issue directly linked to personnel health. Therefore, now more than ever, it is of concern that sufficient measures are taken for the prevention of Covid-19, as well as other diseases related to the concentration of particulate pollutants in indoor environments.
However, improving air quality in workplaces should not be a one-off or exceptional measure; it is a long-term strategy that will continue to bring benefits long after the pandemic is over:
In workplaces such as offices, many people usually live together in small spaces and often without controlled ventilation. This fact causes CO₂ levels to increase, reaching inadequate levels, which can affect the productivity of the workforce.
This has been shown by several studies that link high CO₂ and PM2.5 concentrations, common in indoor environments, to lower cognitive accuracy, such as recent research led by the T.H. Chan School of Public Health at Harvard University.
Continued exposure to these contaminants has a significant impact on the decision-making ability of personnel, including response time and the ability to concentrate and innovate.
Working people spend on average 30% of our time in offices, where sources of indoor air pollution are common, such as emissions from office equipment, new furniture, cleaning products, building materials and, in many cases, poor ventilation.
This long exposure can lead to health problems, as noted by the WHO when referring to Sick Building Syndrome, a set of symptoms such as dryness and irritation of the respiratory tract, eyes and skin, headaches, mental fatigue and persistent colds.
On the other hand, it has been demonstrated direct relationship between poor air quality and the spread of viruses such as Covid-19 and other respiratory diseases, which makes it very important to keep workplaces properly ventilated to ensure the health of the workforce.
Ensuring adequate air quality in offices will help to mitigate the effect of these diseases, reducing absenteeism and promoting the well-being and comfort of personnel.
In a recent survey, 82% of participants reported that they would feel safer in the office if they received timely and transparent air quality data. Taking action and, more importantly, showing the results will help to increase staff confidence and motivation.
Making people feel protected and cared for by your company will make them stay on the job longer, rather than look for other opportunities. Similarly, these policies can also help attract new talent.
The crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic has put the spotlight more than ever on the social and corporate responsibility practices of all types of companies, with occupational health and safety being the issue that generates most public attention. Much of that attention is focused on indoor air quality, as we can see from the study conducted by the DIRSE association on new priorities for CSR.
Thus, ensuring adequate indoor air quality is a distinctive element of institutions that care about the welfare of their clientele. For this reason, many companies are betting on implementing protocols to control and improve air quality in their offices as a strategy of high corporate responsibility.
Sharing the space's air quality data in real time will make customers and employees feel confident, increasing their trust and satisfaction with the company.
inBiot has different solutions to visualize and display air quality, so that companies can publicly show their efforts to ensure a healthy environment.
Indoor air quality monitoring helps to reduce the running costs of a building by optimising ventilation, heating and cooling according to actual needs.
In a previous post we talked about demand-controlled ventilation, and how the integration of air quality monitors makes it possible to regulate ventilation automatically depending on the occupancy or ambient conditions of the space, providing significant energy and cost savings.
In the case of naturally ventilated offices, measuring the air quality will make it possible to know when it is necessary to open windows and when it is not, with the consequent energy savings in air conditioning by avoiding unnecessary temperature changes.
Indoor air quality management starts with monitoring: knowing the state of air quality will enable appropriate measures to be taken to create a healthy office environment for staff.
Our MICA devices continuously and reliably measure the main parameters that condition indoor air quality. From our cloud platform My inBiot you can consult, analyse and share data in real time, in a simple and intuitive way and with recommendations for improvement to promote health and well-being.
If you are interested in managing and improving the air quality in your office, do not hesitate to contact us. Our team will be happy to support you.
Check out our tips and recommendations in our post on how to take care of air quality in offices.