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Four Key Design Elements Your Employees are Looking For

“I truly believe that if you take care of your employees, they will take care of your business.”  - Richard Branson

We often hear people talking about the 'satisfied customer'. And while it's obviously important that we focus on and value our customer's happiness, we also believe in the importance of focusing on what our employees want, as well. After all, without satisfied employees, chances are, there'll be fewer satisfied customers.

With that in mind, let's talk about four key factors your employees (or potential employees) want in terms of office design:

1. Functionality

It goes without saying that you hired your employees to do a specific job. So, it should come as no surprise then, that that you need to provide those employees with the tools required to effectively complete that job. For starters, quality office furniture, appropriate storage, and a logical layout will go a long way toward helping your team operate at the best of their abilities.

If a workspace isn't functional, people won't be able to focus on their tasks and responsibilities. Meaning that not only will productivity drop, but employees will end up frustrated, unhappy, and headed for the door. On the other hand, when the workplace is well designed, it almost slips into the background, allowing workers to concentrate on what's really important.

2. Desirability

What separates you from the competition and draws talent to your business? It shouldn't simply be about keeping up with the latest office design trends, but rather staying true to your corporate culture and the expectations of those who work for you.

Consider the type of people you want working for you and then create a space that attracts them. And of course, ask your team what they want. You may be surprised with their response. From an in-office yoga studio to a high-end espresso maker, there are a number of tangible ways to set your business apart, thereby making it more desirable to existing and prospective employees. 

3. Comfort

Homey office environments have been gaining in popularity recently, and for good reason. There are obvious benefits to working from home (no commute, getting dressed is optional, and so on.), but these don't always override the pros of working alongside coworkers in an office setting.

Offices with a homier atmosphere offer employees the best of both worlds in many ways (although you’ll still have to commute, and yes, pants are probably mandatory). Employees benefit from the productivity and collaboration that comes with working at the office, while still enjoying the casual comforts of home.

This means comfortable (yet ergonomic) furniture, proper lighting, casual breakaway areas, appealing artwork, and a space for food prep.

4. Inspiration

From a serene breakout area to a vibrant meeting room and every square foot between, aesthetics matter. Yet creating an inspirational space for employees can often present a challenge for business owners. What one employee considers inspirational (say, ultra-trendy furniture and floor-to-ceiling murals) may prove distracting for another.

However, there are plenty of scientific studies out there to steer you in the right direction. For example, research shows that certain colours create a more stimulating physiological response than others, while other studies demonstrate that plants and natural elements will improve mood and boost performance in the workplace. 

And again, it's important to consult with your staff, especially when the outcome will impact them as much as the design of your office space will. Finding the right mix of design elements will ensure your office is one that people look forward to working in each day.

What now?

Much of this is easier said than done. If you're looking to create a space employees enjoy working in, but aren't exactly sure how to make it a reality, get in touch with us. Our team has been at this a long time (over 30 years), and our expertise, paired with insight from you and your team, we can design an office that helps your business attract retain the best talent.

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