In a recent WorkDesign article, Aimee Collins, Senior Principal of Design, Americas shares four ways companies can create experiential offices with amenities and offerings to meet the needs of their workforce.
Employees are back in the office
In our recent Global Workplace Insights report, Returning for Good we found that while the perception is that Gen Z’ers prefer to work remotely, they actually want to be in the office. 79% of workers between 18-34 years old believe they’ll be the the office four days a week.
So, how can companies cater their office designs to what Gen Z and other generations are looking for?
Build a connection
When a Gen Z comes into the workplace, they expect amenties, experiences, and space where they can work, and socialize. Aimee shares, "For our clients, designing an office to meet these needs means building spaces that enable collaboration and camaraderie, which Gen Z employees value deeply." 31% say they enjoy social interaction with colleagues with 36% said they missed this type of interaction when working from home.
Having flexible, mixed space types can provide workers with comfortable places to work and connect, like a working café or open meeting spaces.
Many Gen Z’ers haven’t worked in louder environment until recently. While social spaces are needed, so are quiet areas for focus work and respite. Quiet areas are especially important for neurodivergent workers and those who find open, highly trafficked areas overstimulating.
It’s important to have a balance of ‘we’, ‘me’, and ‘us’ spaces in your office design.
Technology is king
One of the most important tools needed in the office is a strong internet set up (42%) and good workplace technologies (37%). With many meetings, client facing and internal, still occuring remotely, it’s critical rooms (private and open) are outfitted with virtual capabilities like video, audio, room reservation apps, and digital collaboration tools.
“While outfitting every meeting space with virtual capabilities is becoming a given, some companies are going beyond this, providing easy access to virtual offerings in casual collision areas as well.”– Aimee Collins, Senior Principal, Design, Americas
Beyond technology, workers want the comforts of home in their workplaces. This includes access to natural light and good acoustics so they are distracted during calls. 32% said access to natural light is important to them in their work environment.
Employees want choice of where they work. Offices that provide a “kit of parts” enable workers to choose where and how they work best. While this strategy caters to the young generation, other generations in the workplace will benefit as well.
A workplace design that meets the needs of all your people can help improve satisfaction, productivity, and encourage people to want to come to the office more. Read Aimee’s full WorkDesign article.
Aimee has practiced interior architecture for over 25 years, serving as an interior designer and planner for corporate, hospitality, multi-family, and retail spaces. Her approach of establishing communication and collaboration chains early in the project process, combined with her innovative and enduring design expertise, makes her an invaluable asset. Aimee ensures her client’s vision is effectively implemented while adhering to budget and schedule requirements.