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Art in the Workplace

Marketing research has proven that art in the workplace has a measurable, positive influence on both clients and employees.  This is why the world’s top companies invest in workplace art, they recognize its role as an effective form of internal branding.

 

According to studies conducted by BOSTI Associates, a workplace planning and design consultancy firm in New York, there is a clear correlation between how people experience the offices they work in and their productivity levels on the job including job performance, satisfaction and their ability to communicate with each other.

 

A survey conducted by ICM, a London based research firm, and Art & Business, a non-profit network that builds partnerships between businesses and the arts at the corporate level.  Their findings show that 73% of employees wanted more art in the workplace, stating that it both motivated and inspired them.

 

In yet another study, this one conducted by the Business Committee for the Arts, in collaboration with the International Association for Professional Art Advisers, researchers established a positive relationship between on the job productivity and the presence of art in the workplace.  Along with productivity, the study addressed other human factors such as stress, morale and creativity.  The survey polled employees from a variety of companies across industry lines, and demonstrated that art in the workplace:

 

  1. Helps combat stress
  2. Heightens creativity
  3. Improves productivity
  4. Encourages expression and creativity
  5. Encourages diversity appreciation

 

Including artwork in company offices has a strategic importance in business planning.  By including art in your corporate budget you may also be aiding in managing human resources and marketing.  The inclusion of art in company offices is an excellent marketing strategy if your company is in the service sector where outside customers visit company offices on a daily basis.   As an example, many medical service providers in private practice continuously acquire art to support a sense of calmness and security.  Strategically placing pieces of artwork in company buildings is a strong public relations tool, setting the business apart from competitors.

 

In the long run, the inclusion of art in your strategic plans displays the company’s sense of social responsibility, teaching employees and customers to appreciate the value of art in society.  Art will also enhance your work environment, fostering the acceptance of diversity and boosting creativity among employees.

 

If you think including art in your workplace is a great idea, your next move is to decide how to go about acquiring pieces of artwork and what form of art should you use?  You should begin this process with a step-by-step analysis of your company’s needs.  Buying artwork is an important decision that requires substantial consideration.  Here are some points to think about:

 

  1. What form of art, and in what medium?  Oil paintings on canvas, wooden sculptures, photographs?
  2. Themes and content (Nudes and morbid imagery are a no no.)
  3. Quantity vs. quality.  Few expensive pieces or numerous cheaper ones.
  4. Budget.  Don’t spend what you don’t have.
  5. Design and décor issues.  Sometimes it’s best to leave this to interior design professionals.

 

After making the best decision for your company, designate the responsibility of proposal preparation, procurement and collection management within the company, or contract from outside.