According to SanPiN 2.2.2 / 2.4.1340-03, which regulates the hygienic requirements for the work process, the standard area per person in an office must be at least 4.5 m. In practice, most employers do not adhere to this figure - their employees are crowded together in 2-3 sq. m. Where do office standards come from, why non-compliance can harm the company, and how to calculate the office area correctly?
The old USSR standards for living space per person set a conditional minimum of 5 square meters. It was believed that people should not be given more space than the minimum and there was no need to improve their living conditions.
Later, the living space standards per person changed upwards - up to 9, and then up to 12 square meters per person. Nevertheless, not only housing but any space where people spend time must provide normal conditions for life.
Today’s regulatory acts have established several sanitary and epidemiological requirements for office premises that help to prevent the employees’ health and life threats:
the mentioned area standard for 1 person is 4.5 square meters and concerns the workplace where a computer with a flat liquid crystal (LCD) screen is used;
the same area is provided for each employee of the design bureau, regardless of whether he works on a kulman or computer;
SNiP 2.09.04-87 specifies the standard area in the office per person from a mobility-impaired group (disabled) and moving in a wheelchair - 5.65 and 7.65 square meters. m .;
the presence of auxiliary devices for general use - a printer, a large monitor, a scanner, fax, etc. is a reason for increasing the area.
If the duration of a person’s work does not exceed 4 hours, it is allowed to reduce the area to 4.5 square meters or equip the so-called hot desk (a desktop that is not assigned to a specific employee).
Workers dissatisfied with working conditions have the right to initiate an inspection from an independent organization, labour inspectorate or trade union. In the case of confirmation of claims, the perpetrator is obliged to pay compensation and/or to provide an increased period of leave.
The thoughtless desire to save money on renting or buying an office space by cutting the area standard for the employees leads to problems occurrence in business:
growing dissatisfaction inside the team;
gradual motivation and performance decrease;
the imposition of penalties and fines during the inspection.
To prevent this, it is recommended to calculate the office area in advance:
1. Estimate the number of employees and office equipment and calculate the due area according to the regulations.
2. Determine the number of hallways between tables with a width of at least 2 m.
3. Find out the approximate number and dimensions of supporting furniture and equipment.
4. Take into account the square of the dining area, reception, security post, etc.
Taking into account all the data obtained, you can lead to office space standards and thereby avoid law-breaking practises.