What employees want most from their workspaces

We know an office setting must have the right conditions for workers’ health, comfort and productivity.

As a result, leading organisation around the world are constantly lookung for ways to improve work environments, including providing workplace gyms, gar-dens, mothers’ rooms and day-care services.

The Havard Business School conducted a survey on what employees want most from their workspaces. It found they want the basics first; better air quality, access to natural light, and the ability to persionalise their workspace.

Half of the employees surveyed said poor air quality makes them sleepier during the day, and more than a third reported up to an hour in lost productivity as a result.

The study established that air quality and light were the biggest influencers of employee perfo-mance, happiness and well-being, while fitness facilities and tech-nology-based health tools were the most frivial.

“A high-quality workplace – one with natural light, good venti-lation and comfortable temperatures – can reduce abse-nteesim up to four days a year,” the study reported.

It says organisations have the power to make improvements in these areas, and they need to, both for their workers and them-selves. The survey offers three steps for this.

First, organisations need to stop spending money on pointless perks.

“They should focus more on cha-nges in the workplace environ-ment that impact all employees, like air quality and access to light, and less on those that only a minority of employees will take advantage of, like an on-site gym.”

Second, employees should allow their workers to personalise the-ir spaces where possible to suit their different preferences. This includes giving employees more freedom to choose, say room te-mperature, lighting and even the music that theu want to listen to.

Third, businesses need to intro-duce changes that focus not only on the physical health of emplo-yees, but also their emotional and environmental wellness.

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