What workers want from their dream office
Carlsberg don’t make offices, but if they did you’d perhaps expect a rooftop garden football pitch or even a walk-in wardrobe to make getting ready for Friday night drinks easier.
We’ve all got our own idea of a dream office space.
So the results of a new poll of 800 UK white-collar staff by Steelcase office furniture may surprise some people.
Natural lighting, effectual air conditioning and heating, plus improved office space utilisation head the list of dream office “must-haves”.
Here are eight things many of us hanker after for our perfect office:
Let there be light
There’s nothing worse than coming in on a Monday morning to a dark, gloomy workspace. Google showed its customary foresight, recognising the importance of a light, airy environment on office morale and efficiency. Its “Boomerang” headquarters in California promise solar panels and huge use of glass when it opens next year. It will also be positioned in such a way that utilises most of the daylight.
The temperature setting at home is a constant source of arguments between warring couples. So it’s little wonder that this niggle extends to the office too. Some employees become agitated and find it impossible to work when the office mercury rises above 25C. Conversely, anything under 25C and some workers start dressing for a big freeze. The Steelcase survey found that employees want more say over heating controls to make them feel more comfortable during work in a relaxing environment that enables them to perform better.
Better use of space
Free movement as well as posture choice are key to many workers. It also means allowing staff to personalise their own section of office space by bringing in plants or family photos. This all helps to give employees a feeling of being part of the company. It also accommodates the creative process and a degree of feel-good factor.
It’s ironic that a company called Sweaty Betty is among the UK companies leading the way when it comes to making being hot and sticky in the office a thing of the past. The sports retailer provides showers and even a blow-dry bar to help workers freshen up – especially if they’ve cycled to work.
Why waste time rushing to the gym at lunch when you can have one in-house? Nomura bank, Adidas, MBDA missile systems and Business Environment are among the firms who provide workers a place to workout.
Many employees dream of a rooftop garden to chill-out in over lunch. This also takes rushing to get back to work out of the equation. Google and Facebook are forerunners in this area – with rooftop parks planned for their new offices.
This is on many people’s wishlists, especially those in need of de-stressing. Quintiles clinical trials firm is among the companies who make this wish come true for its staff.
Over a third of Singaporeans want a peaceful place to doze above all else, according to a survey by LinkedIn professional networking website. This beat competition from other “must-haves”, such as a clone to assist through the working day, a sunlit space plus mute buttons for colleagues.