Over the past few years, there has been a marked increase in the number of people who work remotely. And this trend doesn’t discriminate, as it can be seen across the board, throughout a number of industries. And, honestly, it comes as no surprise - with the advances in technology, today’s workforce can conduct their business almost entirely online. However, smart employers are doing all they can to continue offering their employees a space in which they enjoy working.
With vacancy rates down, and the annual returns on office space continuing to increase, employers are starting to take their cues from different industries, including retail and hospitality. As a result, more and more offices are utilizing innovative space and the latest technology to lure workers back into the office.
Thanks to all of the “dot com” startups run my Millennial entrepreneurs, you may think that every contemporary office space needs a colorful and funky rec room, complete with sleek, modern furniture and a pool or ping pong table. And truthfully, while these types of offices do exist, they just simply aren’t the norm.
For instance, the Parisian co-working space of Kwerk is a 24,000 square foot, multi level space that was designed as a cross between a theatre set, a boutique hotel, and an art gallery. Co-working spaces and office alike are seeing the value in using elaborate interior design techniques to set themselves apart from the competition. But how are the doing it?
Let’s take a closer look at some of today’s trends in office amenities, and how they are leading the way to modern office space more closely resembling a boutique hotel.
1. On site childcare
While not all businesses have the ability to offer this amenity, due to the high financial costs, on site childcare is one of the most attractive amenities you could possibly offer to a working parent. Flexibility and work life balance are both tremendous factors when people are deciding where to work. Further, employees are far more likely to remain loyal to an employer when they feel their family life is respected and understood. This leads to lower employee turnover - a definite win for employers.
2. Pet friendly environments
More and more offices today are becoming pet friendly, allowing employees to bring their pets to work with them. Having pets in the office offers a variety of benefits, including lower stress and increased relaxation, more positive interactions between colleagues, an improved company image, less employee turnover, and increased employee performance.
3. On site fitness
Another amenity appreciated by today’s health-conscious workforce is an on site fitness center. Today, it’s not uncommon for a large percentage of workers to live a rather sedentary lifestyle, thanks to the large number of hours logged sitting at a desk in front of a computer. Unfortunately, after a long day at the office, many employees are simply too tired to make a long trek to the gym… so why not bring the gym to employees? On site fitness centers encourage employees to be more active, leading to better overall health and fewer sick days - a cost savings to employers.
4. On site restaurants
A large portion of the current workforce is made up of Millennials and Gen Z-ers, who value health and wellness more so than previous generations - and really put their money where their mouths are. More than any other generation, Gen Z is most willing to pay a premium for healthy or natural foods.
Having fresh food easily accessible on site is important to employees, so more and more employers are making the switch from vending machines to on site restaurants and cafes. In addition to having healthier food choices, employees also appreciate the convenience and ease of having options on site.
No matter the industry, it is important to keep a finger on the pulse of what workers are looking for. As these trends continue to emerge and develop, it’s likely the lines will continue to blur between office space and boutique hotels.