Axel Kapinga

21 may 2019

7 things people want in an office space

Choosing the right office is a tedious, daunting task. If you do it thoughtfully at least. As I mentioned in one of our previous blogs, there are a lot of factors to take into consideration. One of them is how your employees will feel and conduct themselves in your office. In this blog, you’ll find out what you need to do satisfy your employees’ needs.

 

Office satisfaction = Employee engagement

Office satisfaction is essential to you and your company. As stated on workplaceinsight.net: “Employee engagement positively correlates with workplace satisfaction.” Professionals who are highly satisfied with their workplace are highly engaged. The correlation is undeniable. Unfortunately, only 13% of global workers are highly satisfied with their workplace. It gets even worse: 11 percent of employees are highly dissatisfied with their offices and thus, highly disengaged.

 

 

 

1. Let there be light

Let there be light. Most of us rush to the window when allowed to pick a desk in our workspace. Soothing sunbeams beat fluorescent lamps every day of the week. But there's more to it than just 'loving' natural light. We actually need it. We sleep more because of it. People with a window view sleep 46 minutes more per night. That's about 11,66 days a year more than people without a window view at their desk.

 

 

Coincidentally 47% of employees admit they feel tired or very tired due to a lack of natural light. Studies also show an 84% drop in symptoms of eyestrain and 56% report an improved short-term memory.

 

But above all, natural light makes us happier.

The Future Workplace Employee Experience Study found that 78% of workers seated at a window feel happier, while 43% of workers who lack natural light report regular bouts of gloominess. Natural light makes us better workers. Our productivity increases by 2%. So, choose your next workspace carefully. Let there be light.

 

2. Privacy: open space vs. private office

Open spaces, like coworking spaces, allow for interaction, knowledge-sharing, and collaboration. It enhances creativity, but they can hamper productivity. But they’re conducive to inhibit privacy. On top of that studies have shown that open office workers are 66 percent less productive.

 

How can you overcome this? By alternating between open space and private office. An open space is an ideal venue if you need to interact with your colleagues or peers. Having people working around you is also stimulating and motivating when performing certain tasks. A private office comes in handy when you really need to buckle down and focus on the task at hand. So, when choosing your next office, pick one that has both.

 

We happen to have 3 business centers that combine coworking space with private office.  Want to find out more about them?

 

 

3. Comfort

Comfort is another factor that’s linked to well-being, engagement, and productivity. According to the wellbeing guide from Steelcase, 85% of professionals experience discomfort at work. 37 percent of workers stated that the discomfort stops them from excelling at work. So, discomfort office doesn’t only affect your employees. It also impacts your bottom-line. A study performed by koguk.com established that discomfort can cost up to 21 million working days every month. This equates to a loss of £3bn every year.

 

4. Amenities

 

Amenities can be a massive motivator, especially during strenuous days at the office. A new gym, a top-notch coffee bar or outdoor seating are areas where professionals can escape work without having to leave it. A change of scenery will get the blood flowing and improve your employees’ productivity.

 

5. Trustworthy Wifi

Imagine not being able to receive or send emails, texts or other types of messages. Scary. We almost can’t afford to not be connected. So, good wifi is instrumental. Isn’t the wifi-password the on the first 3 questions you ask when you go to an office? The wifi has to be steady and fast. There are a few things more annoying than waiting for minutes on and for a page to load.

 

6. Informal Spaces are in Demand

Nathalie Kiekens is our go-to Interior Architect and Co-Founder at Detail Concept. She finds that “employees are increasingly demanding. Including about their workspace. They want their workspace to be something they can be proud of and where they can feel at home.”

 

Why? Studies show that well-being at work is a priority for employers and employees alike. A happy employee is more loyal and productive. “When designing a workspace, this should be your mantra: ‘Everyone should feel at home’

 

The aforementioned Steelcase came to several interesting findings:

 

  • 51% of the respondents stated that they needed a breakout area in their office.

  • 43% of the respondents believe that mingling in informal workspaces establish a deeper sense of trust between colleagues.

  • 53% said that they cannot find the right type of space they need, and 40% felt that they didn’t have enough informal spaces in their offices.
     

7. Location and Perception Matter

78% of professionals under 35 are willing to accept a lesser wage if they get the opportunity to work close to their homes. They want to limit their commute to 30 minutes or less. A longer commute would decrease their satisfaction and happiness at work, and therefore their productivity. Coincidentally, most of those young professionals tend or want to live in the city. If you put 2 and 2 together, opening up an office in the city or allowing your team to work there seems like the obvious thing to do, right?
 

There you have it: 8 things your people look for in an office space. This list is not definitive. Feel free to give us your expectations and stay tuned for an update of this list in the near future. Meanwhile, if you are looking for a workspace that combines all of the above, check out ours.

 

 

 

 

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