The workplace is changing. Most of these changes are aimed at improving employee life and, in turn, their productivity. Here’s a look at the changes taking shape and how they are sure to affect more and more workers as more companies take note.
Balance of Private and Public Working Spaces
After a huge migration towards open plan spaces in order to ditch the cubicle, many companies are finding that this set up isn’t as desirable as they were once led to believe. While open plan designs do allow for more collaboration, there are other downfalls, including lack of privacy and more distractions. Today, many workplaces are now aiming to find more of a balance in their working environments. Most of the research, including that of Steelcase, supports that most employees, especially those of a more introverted nature, prefer to have a balance and, more importantly, a choice where they perform certain work tasks. While it may be better to complete some work tasks in a large, open collaborative space, other more independent tasks often require more privacy and more quiet to allow for full concentration. Having the autonomy to choose has been shown to increase workers’ productivity. Turns out, employees might just know best when it comes to where they work best. More companies are entrusting them to make that decision.
More Flexibility & Better Work-Life Balance
As more millenials flood the workforce, companies are recognizing a shift in workers’ priorities. An example of this shift is the larger emphasis millenials place on flexibility when compared to other generations. In fact, many millenials say that they would sacrifice salary if it meant having a more flexible work schedule. With more of the workforce looking for flexible positions with the promise of better work-life balance, more employers are likely to respond to the demand for worry of missing out on top talent. Technology, too, allows for more flexible working schedules, as it grows better and more reliable. Many companies are offering the option to occasionally work from home.
Greater Concern about Health and Wellness
It is probably now pretty safe to say that most companies understand the importance of keeping employees healthy and happy. Not only will happy employees be more productive and more loyal, they are also sure to impact the bottom line in a beneficial, positive way. It’s simply good business to keep employees happy and healthy. In effort to do just that, more and more companies are offering wellness programs or benefits to encourage employees to stay active. Other employers consider their own environment and how it supports workers’ health and makes the changes necessary, whether it’s incorporating standing desks into the workplace set up or holding the occasional standing meeting.