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#Research

The 3 Things That People Want Most at Their Offices: a Canteen, Free Wi-Fi, and...

Article May 3, 2018  |  Text by Petra Baumruková Text by Petra Baumruková

What services do people expect to have on-site at their workplace? They want a weight room or a good cafe nearby much more than a nursery. This is one of the conclusions from a huge survey of over 2,500 employees across the Czech Republic.

Only 8% of employees are very satisfied with how their work environment currently looks. Nearly twice as many (15%) have the opposite view. The other respondents involved in this survey — organized by JLL in cooperation with Skanska and ABSL — have no strong opinion here.

So, how should offices be improved? The next question, about the ideal supplementary workplace services, brought us a partial answer here. The answers show that you’ll gain people’s hearts (and stomachs) best if you let them use an appetizing canteen, fast Wi-Fi, and a roof terrace.

Your employees will most frequently spend their noon pauses outside the office building. And yet many people also have lunch at the company canteen or even right next to their keyboard on their desk. And according to CBRE consultant Filip Muška, the design of companies’ dining spaces is precisely among the things that need a fundamental change.

Desks Aren’t for Everyone

People spend the vast majority of their working hours at their workplaces. Meanwhile, workplaces are dramatically changing in form. The mover and shaker here is flexibility. The survey showed that only 5% of people work in separate offices today; most modern office spaces have an open-space layout.

82% of the people surveyed have a permanent desk that they can decorate with, say, a photo of their dog. The rest can make use of one of the growing number of alternative workspaces, such as work zones for formal meetings (e.g. a sufficient number of meeting rooms) and informal meetings (creative zones that increase employees’ productivity). Most of the people surveyed would welcome private spaces that would let them escape from noise (86%).

Two important employee needs clash in workplace design. One is the need to focus on work without being disturbed (only 1/3 of the respondents feel that their current workplace lets them focus enough). The other is the need to cooperate with their colleagues (for 32% of respondents, this is the main reason why they head to work at the office). 

via GIPHY

Downtown and Out of Office

One alternative work environment is the home. Currently employees spend only about 5% of their work week working from home, and it’s typically 3-5 days per month at most. Meanwhile a significant percentage of those surveyed (60%) would like to work outside the office for 3-10 days per month. They even consider this to be an attractive advantage that employers can offer.

In what kind of location would you like to work? Naturally the vast majority of respondents answered that they prefer the downtown, or alternatively a place with good transport accessibility. Employees gave 20 – 40 minutes as an acceptable commute time. Nevertheless, 6% of respondents stated that they’d actually like to not work downtown. (Perhaps planting trees deep in the forest?)