Your workforce is made up of diverse range of individuals. While some employees may love being in the midst of all the hustle and bustle, others may prefer somewhere quieter. But does your office design cater to everyone?

New research from Office Genie suggests that many workspaces in the UK are failing to accommodate the needs of their employees, meaning staff are unable to work effectively.

The survey of nearly 1,500 working people revealed that companies are lacking spaces that aid lone working (67%), fail to provide private spaces (54%), and do not have areas solely for quiet work (58%).

Nearly half (45%) also fail to utilise office design to promote collaborative work, while three quarters (74%) lack spaces encouraging staff to relax.

Perhaps more worryingly, a fifth (20%) of respondents said their workplace doesn’t allow them to comfortably carry out their work and, of these, 70% admitted it impacts their desire to actually turn up in the first place!

The research suggests that businesses are failing to listen to their employees, as those surveyed cited chill-out areas, quiet areas, and private spaces as features they’d like to see in their office to boost wellbeing and productivity. This was particularly felt by introverts.

Of those who identify themselves as introverts, 30% believe a quiet area would be beneficial to their wellbeing, compared to nearly a quarter (22%) of extroverts.

Introverts were also more likely to believe that private workstations would enhance productivity, with 24% of introverts agreeing with this, compared to 17% of extroverts.

So, why are so many offices lacking these features? The research suggests that it might, in part, be down to the fact that over two thirds (67%) of workplaces in the UK are open plan.

Discussing the findings, Group HR Director at Reward Gateway, Robert Hicks, explained that engaged employees make better company decisions, and are also more productive and innovative.

He continued: “The workplace can change and impact productivity, happiness and engagement, both positively and negatively. Changes that alter an employee’s existing behaviours and habits can be incredibly disruptive.

“Therefore, you need to cater for a variety of behaviours and habits, from introverts to extroverts, as well as consider how to guide employees through any changes you intend to make.”

It is vital for companies to start catering to their employees’ needs, as JLL’s recent Workplace, Powered by the Human Experience study found that employee engagement, empowerment and fulfillment are more critical than ever before.

Echoing Office Genie’s findings, the JLL study revealed staff want to turn away from the traditional workspace, with 39% expressing a desire to escape their desks, 40% wanting places to recharge, and nearly half (47%) of respondents saying they want spaces that are designed to boost concentration.

Become a leader in employee engagement, productivity and wellbeing by catering for the needs of your staff. Speak to Kerr today to discuss how you can incorporate alternative work spaces into your office design.

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