Features

Planning Office Lighting and How to Make Yours More Productive

The correct office lighting is a key component to creating bright and efficient workspaces. Get it right and things like work fatigue will be reduced while the performance and well-being of the workers who use the space will in turn, improve.

We are now working longer, more intense hours than ever before, so employers are increasingly being encouraged to create work spaces that positively impact their staff. The right lighting, at the right time, in the right place, can improve motivation, productivity, even support a more positive attitude for employees. It will really pay off to take time to consider and plan lighting carefully. A study by the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering showed that in companies with a higher standard of interior design, productivity can increase up to 36%. Lighting can also play a vital role in a helping company’s reduce their energy and maintenance costs, so it pays to make informed decisions when it comes to lighting in office design.

In this article we are going to explore all aspects of office lighting in depth, covering the following areas:

Colour temperature explained

Lighting Colour Temperature

Rather than colours of the rainbow, colour temperatures simply refers to warm or cold light. Colour temperature is measured in units called kelvins and uses a scale that runs from warm to cold. The warmest temperature range is 2000k-3000k and this is used to create an ambient, welcoming atmosphere. Warm lighting is generally dimmer, and used in spaces intended for relaxation and rest. In an office this might be a break room, cafeteria or a reception area. Cooler lighting ranges from 3100K to 6500K and is much brighter and crisp, at the other end of the scale. Cooler lighting is better suited to areas where task lighting is needed, such as offices, garages or display areas. Often it is needed where focused tasks such as writing, working on a computer or drawing are to take place.

Desk area lighting

Using daylight to increase productivity

Daylight Lighting Colour Temperature

In an ideal world we would spend all our working time in abundant natural light. The perfect offices would have large windows that would allow natural light to flood in all day long. Sounds good doesn’t it, if a little impractical. Studies have shown that sitting close to a window in an office can have positive effects on employee satisfaction, so what is the ideal solution for offices without many windows? Mimicking natural light through artificial light, is the next best option.

Lighting Colour Temperature - Office - Desk Lighting

This can be achieved through the use of daylight coloured bulbs. Cool, daylight bulbs are a fantastic alternative to harsh fluorescent lighting that used to be common place in offices. We would recommend bulbs that are 5000K plus in colour temperature to try to replicate true daylight as closely as possible. Studies have shown that the light produced by daylight bulbs:

  • Helps prevent eyestrain
  • Improves alertness
  • Reduces fatigue
  • Enhances overall well-being and mood.

As well as improving performance during the day whilst at work, exposure to this bright type of light can also help you to sleep better. It stimulates the brain, and can even affect certain processes in your body such as blood pressure and heart rate. A lack of natural light can make us feel depressed, lethargic and lacking in energy, none of which make for a healthy working environment. These symptoms can be a contributing factor to workplace stress and burnout.

Cooler daylight can also be useful in areas where task lighting is needed. In an office this is required when intricate tasks are being done, or for areas where people use screens regularly. An important consideration with task lighting is making it adaptable for the individuals using it, so that it can be tailored to their needs. This could mean a desk lamp that can be angled, a floor lamp in an area of the office or over head lights that are operated by individual switches. It has been found that giving employees the opportunity to personalise and control lighting, can help them feel more satisfied at work and less stressed.

Brainstorming areas

Cool White Lighting Colour Temperature

If your office has a dedicated area or meeting room for brainstorms, pay close attention to the lighting. Choose lights that are too warm and employees might feel too relaxed to generate ideas. According to a study by the University of Greenwich, the use of light bulbs that emit cool light with a blue tinge (‘Blue Enriched’) that are around 3,700K, results in improved productivity and performance. This happens because this cooler light helps promote mental alertness, plus it reduces the production of melatonin, which makes us sleepy. It’s almost like thinking about the physical temperature of a room. It shouldn’t be too warm so people fall asleep but also not so cold that they’re shivering and can’t focus.

So, when considering the lighting in rooms for brainstorming, or where people are likely to sharing ideas, definitely opt for lights that have cooler coloured bulbs or better still, have the option for you to adjust the lighting yourself.

Depending on the type and size of your office or room, you may be looking for a range of different light fittings to plan your office lighting. In our offices here at Lyco we use Cool white LED panels, alongside an Edit Office LED Bar above each pair of desks. They provide cool light which helps office workers see well, especially when working on screens for much of the day. The bright light ensures eyes aren’t strained and their energy level stays high.

We have so many different options of lighting that we think would support your office, no matter its size. For example, why not consider track lights in meetings rooms with adjustable heads for focused lighting. They are easy to install and include energy saving LED bulbs for lower running and maintenance costs.

Finding the right lighting for meeting rooms

Meetings rooms are one of the hardest spaces to plan for in an office environment as they have lots of different uses. On one hand, you want them work as a space that encourages productivity, interaction and engagement during meetings or presentations. However, the space also needs to feel warm and welcoming to external visitors and clients who may also be visiting with you in your offices. They could be used for one-to-one meetings, or conversations of a sensitive nature, so you want lighting that will complement the mood and tone the space is being used for. We would recommend lighting temperatures between 3100K and 4500K which are bright but welcoming. The conference room, for example should have lighting that falls somewhere in the middle of the spectrum. Bright enough to keep people’s attention sparked and the ideas following, but warm enough to create intimacy and comfort at other times. There are various other ways to ensure meeting room lighting is flexible, for example by using dimmers, and adding wall lights which will add subtle background ambience.

Lighting Colour Temperature - Office - Desk Lighting

Smart lighting is becoming increasingly popular in meetings rooms and throughout offices, as it offers the flexibility to alter lighting easily. One minute a board meeting could be happening in there and the next, there could be a confidential conversation. Smart lighting offers the opportunity to adapt the lighting at the flick of a switch. Better still, employees can easily control and match the lighting to their own preferences as well as the tone of the meeting. This type of set up has huge potential to enhance employee satisfaction, as staff feel more empowered and in control of their working environment, which some studies have shown, can help companies retain their staff.

We stock a range of white changing LED bulbs that can be fitted to track light kits, and then controlled via phones or on a centralised dock. Track lighting is a great way to highlight seating areas around a desk, and as the individual heads can be angled, they can provide directional lighting for users.

Warm lighting in break out areas

Warm White Lighting Colour Temperature

We’ve talked lots about productivity so far, which we can all agree is important in an office setting. But what about when staff need to take well-earned breaks throughout the day, in order to have some down-time and unwind? They not only need space to break out but the lighting has to be fit for purpose in these spaces, too. The key to achieving a sense of balance is to separate the lighting in areas designed for people to work and for them to relax. Not only will this create distinct spaces for the two activities but it will amplify the results of bright white light in office areas and brainstorming rooms.

Lighting-colour-temperature-Break-room-lighting

So, what should the lighting be like in a break out area? Using ambient and warm lighting is key to creating spaces where staff can have some quiet time and switch off amongst the chaos of the working day. As well as comfortable furniture and soft furnishings, consider using floor lamps, wall lights and bulbs with colour temperatures between 2000K and 3000K. This will help to create a cosy and inviting atmosphere. We recommend selecting light fittings in neutral colours rather than anything too brightly coloured or eye-catching. This is so that they aren’t too distracting while people are reading, chatting or eating lunch.

The Mathis light by Edit is a great option to achieve this as it will blend into neutral backgrounds well, but can also be painted a specific colour if needed. Wall lights are an ideal way to add warmth as they provide ambient lighting to rooms. They could work just as well in less formal meeting rooms as well as in break and staff rooms or reception areas.

LED Lighting

We are currently experiencing the real effects of climate change. So whatever you decide to do with your lighting, it’s vital now more than ever to invest in LED. Switch to LED and you will be helping to save the planet and making cost savings for your business right away. LED will improve energy efficiency up to 80% over older fluorescent lighting, which is undeniably positive for any business. And because they use a fraction of the energy, over time energy bills will reduce. LED bulbs far outlast fluorescent or halogen bulbs, with many of them having a considerable life span up to 50,000 hours. This means they will need to replaced far less frequently than their older equivalents. Eventually, it will lead to lower maintenance costs, too. These differences alone can repay the investment very quickly.

It is easy to see why converting your office lighting to LED makes business sense. But did you know LEDs can also improve the health and well-being of workers where they are used? They are the perfect option for lighting an office as they provide a brighter, clearer light compared to fluorescent tubes. These have a tendency to be harsh and overly bright. Studies have shown that LED lighting is much better for us in the long term.

  • It can improve our mood
  • Boost our energy levels
  • Help us avoid eye strain
  • Reduce levels of tiredness

An investment in LED lighting is a means to develop a healthy working environment in which people can thrive and succeed.

Searching for advice? Contact us today

At Lyco we stock thousands of LED office lighting options that are suitable for offices of all types and sizes. Whether your offices are modern, purpose-built premises or a converted barn, we have lighting solutions to cover all bases. Our experienced team are on hand to answer any queries or questions you might have about installations, refits, or upgrading lighting systems in offices and new premises. Simply call or email the team for free advice, support and specific recommendations based on your requirements.

Call us: 0345 646 1133
Email us: [email protected]

Alternatively, you can browse our key commercial lighting categories below:

 

 

Reena Reeves

Reena Reeves

Reena Reeves is writer and editor with 15 years’ experiencing working in publishing and digital media. She has a degree in Journalism and has worked for publications such as Smash Hits magazine, OK! Magazine and The Daily Express. Reena has been writing about lighting since early 2017 and has supported us with website copy, product descriptions and articles on lighting trends and commercial lighting solutions.

Features

What To Look For When Selecting And Installing Downlights For Residential And Office Buildings

Downlights are a commonly used method of lighting that sits recessed into ceilings. One of the main benefits of downlights is their flexibility; they can be installed into high or low ceilings, in small or large rooms and many or few can be used at once. Many retail and hospitality venues opt for recessed downlights as they available in a wide range of colour temperatures, so can add warmth or brightness where needed. They can also be used in a range of different spaces ranging from gymnasiums, bathrooms, kitchens to bedrooms and apartments, and offer a variety of decorative finishes. Depending on the environment there are used in, downlights will need to have certain features to ensure safety and optimal performance.

Fire Rated Downlights

Fire rated downlights are typically found in residential buildings and hospitality venues. The fire rating refers to the amount of time a ceiling can hold back flames before they spread to the next floor in the event of a fire. 30, 60, 90 and 120 minutes are the usual fire rating times available to comply with Part B building regulations. In most 2 or 3 storey homes 30 minute fire-rated downlights will suffice whilst in homes or apartment blocks with four floors 60 minute ratings are required. For larger housing developments where the ceiling is between 18 and 30 metres high, 90 minute fire rated lighting is required. Anything above this ceiling height would require 120 minute fire rated downlights.


Unbeatable on price and easy to install, the trimless plaster-in downlight is a great option for a variety of applications and our recommendation for fire rated downlights. It is adjustable for directional lighting, plus 90 minute fire rated, so would be a good option for residential or commercial developments with multiple floors. Available in a great value 10 pack, this versatile downlight is also budget friendly.

Emergency Downlights

Legislation requires all occupied buildings to have adequate escape lighting to allow safe exit in the event of total power failure. Downlights are much more discreet way of adding emergency lighting to your place of work compared with standard bulkier emergency lighting options. They are small, lightweight and can be installed easily in most office ceilings, giving off a bright white light that turns on automatically when used in emergency mode.
Our bestselling emergency downlight is the non-maintained Eterna 1.4W LED Compact Emergency Downlight  which is pre-wired for easy installation and provides a minimum of 3 hours lighting when the power fails.

Quick Connect for Fast Installation

For fast and efficient installation why not opt for downlights that offer easy installation without complicated wiring? The Luceco dimmable warm white downlight features quick connect functionality – an integrated 3P push-in terminal that allows you to simply push the downlight into place without the need for fiddly wiring. It is available in a range of 30 – 90 minute fire rated options and uses an energy saving LED lamp with a 25,000 hour life expectancy.

At Lyco we have downlights for every application whether this be around the home, in the office or in commercial premises. We have highlighted our recommendations for emergency, fire rated and Quick Connect downlights, but we have many more fittings that range from IP Rated, Integrated LED, dimmable, adjustable and even smart. View our full range of downlight options now.

Buying Guides

The Best Track Lights for Domestic, Commercial, Entertainment and Retail Environments.

Track lighting systems are an efficient and cost-effective means of installing multiple spotlights together without the need for individual wiring. Ideal for creating ambient, accent or more functional lighting, track lighting systems comprise a length of track with a number of spotlights mounted to suit the needs of the space. They are available in a wide range of finishes, shapes and designs and offer a contemporary style that is suited to offices, commercial and retail spaces, as well as residential and domestic applications. Many track lighting systems are scalable so can expand to meet the changing requirements of spaces, yet are still adequate for small areas if needed. When used with LED lamps track lighting will offer minimal on-going maintenance costs as well as long-term cost savings via reduced energy bills.

Here is our run-down of some of the best track lighting systems on the market.

1. Robus Acorn Range

The Robus range of track lighting combines practicality, affordability and quality all in one. They are ideal for many applications including showrooms, hotels, pubs, salons and retail displays with ready made solutions for a wide variety of sized spaces. Many of the tracks can be easily extended, and offer fast and simple installation with everything needed included in the kits. Available in a range of attractive finishes including satin chrome and white, this classic style of track lighting will work with the decor in most settings.

 

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2. Selected by Lyco 3 Light Track Kit

This sleek modern track lighting kit is brand-new to the market for 2019 and has been hand-picked by us for use in retail and commercial settings. Made from durable diecast aluminium and available in a range of colours, it features a unique head design that will deliver a distinctive contemporary look. Fully compatible with LED technology, it will offer superb energy efficiency wherever used. Each of the heads can be adjusted to deliver directional lighting, which is ideal for retail or art displays. The kits come ready for installation with everything included (lamps sold separately) whilst individual track items can also be purchased.

 

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3. Edit Store 3 Light Track Kits

Available exclusively through Lyco, the Edit range of track lighting offers fantastic modern design and high quality products at an affordable price. The Store 3 kit is a modern take on the classic track lighting design with an updated head for a sleek, contemporary finish. They are available in different wattages and in a black or white finish to suit different applications. This is another kit that can be easily extended and adapted.

 

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4. Edit Pivot

The Pivot by Edit is another kit available exclusively from Lyco, featuring distinctive longer poles with cylindrical heads. This eye-catching style of lighting is ideal for retail and art displays and installations, delivering precise directional lighting. Available in a choice of finishes and sizes, each of the heads can be independently adjusted.

 

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Wire lighting offers yet another option when selecting track lighting. Whilst this style is more decorative, it also offers more in terms of flexibility and ease of installation. Simpler to fit, wire lights can be attached to beams, walls, uneven surfaces and require much less hard wiring – none at all in some cases. The LED Chain Wire Light Kit is a superb example of wire lighting, ideal for use in galleries or areas visual displays.

This is a small selection of the track lighting available from Lyco, chosen from some of the leading brands, but many more are available to choose from. For expert advice our expert customer care team on 0345 646 1139 are on hand to answer your lighting queries.

Buying Guides

Best Floodlights for Every Budget

Floodlights are an exceptionally versatile form of lighting and can cater for a huge range of settings whether commercial, residential or industrial. Typically, they emit strong beams of bright light so are the obvious choice for security lighting. Many varieties that utilise warmer light temperatures can be used more decoratively, to accent architectural features or landscaping. The advent of smart technology and LED has meant that many floodlights now feature impressive functionality such as remote control (via mobile apps) and HD Wifi-enabled cameras. Solar panels and sensors deliver minimal energy use in LED floodlights, as well extremely long-life expectancies, which can offer cost savings. The sheer range of floodlights available on the market now means there is a floodlight to suit every setting or application, no matter how big or small. Here is a selection of our best floodlights to suit every budget.

The Best Budget Floodlight For Under £20

Lyco 50W Cool White LED Floodlight

£19.99

This budget-friendly option is hard to beat when it comes to price vs performance. An energy-saving 50W cool white LED, which replaces a 300W halogen lamp, is housed in a contemporary compact casing which gives a neat appearance. Ideal for smaller areas such as gardens and outdoor seating areas, the floodlight has a 25,000 hour life expectancy that far exceeds its halogen equivalent.

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Best Value Floodlight For Under £50

Robus Champion 50W Cool White LED Floodlight

£49.99

With a staggering 50,000 hour life expectancy, this powerful yet lightweight floodlight will last a lifetime. With a 4000k cool white light colour, it is ideal for medium sized patios or car parks. It is constructed from die-cast aluminium black casing with tempered glass diffuser and comes with an adjustable mounting bracket to offer directional lighting.

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Best Value Floodlight For Under £100

Lutec Corn 20W Cool White LED Twin Floodlight with PIR Sensor

£99.99

This terrific floodlight doesn’t just look the part, it boasts a wealth of impressive functionality to boot. An in-built PIR sensor with a 12 metre range makes this a great choice for security purposes in and around commercial or residential premises. You can easily control how long the light stays on for and each light can be independently adjusted and angled. The integrated LEDs replace 200W halogen equivalents meaning you can use far less energy but maintain the same performance.

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Floodlight With The Best Features

Lutec Draco 17.5W LED Security Floodlight with PIR sensor and HD Wifi Camera

£115.00

This floodlight is an impressive piece of kit with a 17.5W LED that is the equivalent to a 200W halogen lamp. Featuring a PIR sensor, camera, as well as being Wifi-enabled, it’s the ultimate choice for securing homes and premises. The light’s time on can be adjusted via a mobile app enabling easy control when away from the property.

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Best Value Floodlight With PIR Sensor

Lyco 50W Cool White LED Floodlight with PIR Sensor

£24.99

This is a great value floodlight to select if a quick and easy deterrent is needed to improve security of premises. The PIR has a range of up to 8 metres and the time on, once activated can be set from between 7 seconds to 10 minutes. The 50W cool white LED is the equivalent to a 300W halogen lamp, so this humble unit really packs a punch.

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The Best Value Floodlight With HD Wifi Camera

Lutec Libra 38W LED Twin Floodlight with PIR Sensor and HD Wifi Camera

£99.00

Equipped with a HD Wifi camera that records 1080 x 720 video quality and supplied with a 8GB SD card, all controls for this floodlight are accessed via a mobile app. The PIR sensor has a detection range of up to 19 metres and a number of time-on pre-sets are available. The 38W energy efficient LED replaces a 300W halogen lamp which has a far superior lifespan of up to 50,000 hours.

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The Best Solar Floodlight

Lutec Sunshine LED Solar Floodlight with PIR Sensor

£51.44

Budget and environmentally friendly, this solar-powered floodlight will not cost a penny to run once it has been installed. Simply ensure the solar panel is positioned in full sunlight to charge and the unit will operate between dusk and dawn or can be switched off when not required. The PIR sensor has a range of up to 15 metres and the time-on when activated can be set from 10 to 90 seconds.

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The Best Value Floodlight For Small Areas (Under 150W Equivalent)

Value 10W Daylight LED Floodlight

£7.99

At the price you will be hard pressed to find an energy-efficient floodlight that is better value. Perfect for small gardens and areas in need of contained light beams the 10W LED is as powerful as a 60W halogen lamp. With a life span of 25,000 hours it will be some time before this floodlight will need to be replaced.

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The Best Value Floodlight For Medium Sized Areas (150W > 500W Equivalent)

Value 50W Daylight LED Floodlight

£19.99

This is a great option for illuminating car parks, gardens or other external areas that don’t require an excessively powerful floodlight. The integrated 50W LED has the equivalent output of a 285W halogen lamp with a fraction of the energy use and a much longer life span of 25,000 hours which will help keep costs down.

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The Best Value Floodlight For Large Industrial Areas (1000W+ Equivalent)

Eterna 200W Cool White LED High Power Floodlight

£194.99

Ideal for large car parks, loading bays and sports pitches this powerful floodlight contains four integrated LEDs, each with an output of 200W. The casing is made from tough polycarbonate and will withstand damage and corrosion. It has a 25,000 hour life expectancy and will use a fraction of the energy of a traditional floodlight.

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Features

Designing, planning and installing Restaurants and Bar lighting

Designing, planning and installing the lighting for a new restaurant opening or refit is a vital element to the process. Whether your customers demand a luxurious intimate dining experience, or prefer to grab fast food on the run, lighting will help create precisely the right mood.

Our dedicated projects team has many years of experience working with some of the biggest names in hospitality, creating bespoke lighting that allows our clients to create exceptional experiences for their customers. Striking a balance between the practical and aesthetic needs of a project is our specialty. We’ll go above and beyond to ensure the back of house lighting is safe and powerful enough for a busy kitchen, whilst behind the bar is illuminated with vibrant cabinet lighting or highlighted with spotlights for a unique look. Over table pendants suspended at just the right height, discreet embedded step lights for venues with lots of stairs and wall lights to create an intimate feel, in even the largest of spaces. Let us take the reins and do all the thinking on your behalf.

LED lights will offer savings in energy, running and maintenance costs. The average LED bulb uses around 90% less energy and far outlasts its traditional equivalent, so it’s easy to see why LED is the obvious choice for many hospitality businesses.

We offer a full range of commercial fittings for back of house lighting:

 

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Panels

Emergency Lighting

Spotlights

Floodlights

 

We have a huge range of decorative lights for front of house areas. We stock lines from the biggest names in the world and can design and create bespoke lighting unique to you.

 

Over Table Pendants

Cabinet Lights

Ambient Wall Lights

Sign Lights

 

We excel at supporting well-known brands across multiple global locations such as Five Guys (we provided lighting across 119 outlets) and Franco Manca Pizza, who have 44 locations across the UK and Italy.

Find out more about our projects here
Contact us today to find out how we can help you – 0345 646 1136