While clutter is a natural by-product of a crowded and high-speed office environment, it’s important to try and mitigate this as much as possible. Strategically placed, carefully chosen office furniture can make it easier to keep things clean.

This is more than just an aesthetic concern: Australian news source the Brisbane Times recently featured an article about the way dust and dirt can congregate in certain areas of the workplace. The worst spots for germs are those that are used the most frequently, including bathrooms and much-used workstations.

In fact, this source, drawing from data observed by Initial Hygiene, hired to assess this problem in Australia, shows how the dirt and grime that accumulates can be financially destructive as well.

Natalie Howard, a representative from the company, was quoted discussing the seriousness of cleanliness, especially when it comes to the more than $11 billion companies reportedly lose to this phenomenon every year in that country.

“Initial’s report demonstrates that if employers invest the money in hygienic workplace facilities they will reap the benefit with a reduction in absenteeism and an increase in productivity,” she said.

Yet in contrast, an article that appeared in Forbes recently questioned whether or not messiness should have its place. Citing a study published in Psychological Science last year, the author of the piece, David Burkus, argues that a workplace that is too clean might be “stifling” to employees who want to pursue more creative solutions to problems.

It can be difficult to find a balance, but there’s something to be said for choosing quality office furniture that is easy to move and sanitize while still allowing employees the freedom to be a little messy. A well designed office environment gives your company the best opportunity to achieve this apparent needed balance between hygiene and creativity.