Aug 03, 2015

Six Amenities to Look for in Office Space

By Don Catalano



When it comes to your office space, a well-lit copy room and a water cooler won't cut it anymore. While many of the changes in expected amenity loads are coming from the Millennials, your CFO also plays a role. Many of these amenities make both happy by creating an office space that is more open and collaborative, but also more space and cost efficient.

As you peruse this list, there is a hidden bit of good news. While your workers would love to see all of them, some of them don't have to be in your suite. Simply having them in the building is more than adequate.


Green Spaces

Gen Y grew up green and expects their workplaces to be the same. LEED-certified office space allows your company to meet this desire. You can go even further by looking for LEED buildings that offer an extensive package of green technology -- like motion sensors and automatic multi-zone thermostats -- to both be more environmentally sustainable as well as to promote greater comfort and control for your employees.


Alternative Transportation

While many of your employees will probably continue driving to work, alternatives are becoming even more important. For short commutes, some of your workers will choose to bike, and offering them a secure place to lock up their bicycle is desirable. Others will use public transportation, so a location near a rail, subway or bus stop, will help them to get to work faster and more ready to start producing.


Outdoor Amenity Areas

Laptops, tablets, cell phones and wireless networking doesn't just mean that your employees can work anywhere. It means that they will. To manage this tendency, seek out an office space that offers Wi-Fi equipped outdoor amenities. Areas where your team can get some fresh air and a fresh perspective will increase employee satisfaction, retention and productivity. The gold standard of outdoor amenities is a rooftop deck that offers access to sunshine, views and a place for true "blue sky" thinking.


Fitness Facilities

For many of your team members, taking care of themselves is another job. Offering a first-class fitness facility right at your workplace helps them stay productive and achieve their personal goals. Along the way, you benefit from better employee health, potentially lower insurance premiums and less absenteeism. Unfortunately, the old model of sticking a treadmill, a bike and a weight machine in an unused small conference room isn't adequate anymore. Your workers now expect full featured facilities, including changing facilities with towel service.  As with the rooftop deck, though, this can be a building amenity.


Open Kitchens

Foodie culture has come to work. With employees "brown-bagging" it both to save money and to live healthier, an en suite open kitchen lets your team eat what they want while networking right through their lunch break.


Interior Glass

Having an ample glass line has been a basic part of office space for decades. Now, though, your workforce wants your space to feel as open as possible, and, to do this, you need to share your exterior facing windows while opening up the interior.


Inside your suite, you have two options -- build as few walls as possible or make as many of them out of glass as you can. Glass walls give your office space the best of both worlds -- the wide open views of a wall-less space and the organization and sound insulation of a walled space.


Commercial Office Space articles:

The Future of Office Space

3 Must-Haves for Today's Commercial Office Space

Parking and Your Office Lease


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Don Catalano

Don Catalano