The benefits of creating environmentally friendly working spaces are worth considering, whether you’re an employer or an employee. Because no matter your perspective, there are a number of reasons why it makes good sense.
1 Save money
In an environmentally friendly office space, you will often find the same thing is reused, or used for a variety of purposes. Hotdesking – using the same desk for different functions – is a great example, which is gaining traction.
2 Save energy
The use of light is a major factor in how much energy an office uses. Making use of as much natural light as possible, using sensors to turn lights on and off in areas that aren’t constantly in use, and shielding workspaces from the sun so that less energy is required to cool them down – these are some of the ways in which environmentally friendly offices use less energy.
3 Save water
Greywater systems are becoming more widely used in offices and shops. Greywater from kitchens and washbasins can be used to flush toilets. Rainwater can be used for irrigation of gardens. You’ll see a great example of this at Melrose Arch in Johannesburg, where rainwater sensors regulate sprinkler systems so that they don’t irrigate after there’s been a downpour.
4 Boost productivity
Psychological studies are finding that workers in environmentally friendly office spaces are consistently more productive than those in comparable environments that aren’t as “green”. It’s thought the positivity that comes from knowing your work doesn’t impact the planet negatively, brings about better work in most people.
5 Attract top talent
Millennials and the generations that follow them care a great deal about the environment. They want to know where the materials for clothes they’re buying were sourced from, how it was made, etc. They also want a clean conscience when it comes to their workplace. So companies wanting to attract top talent in future, have to pay attention to carbon footprint, use of precious resources like water, etc.
6 Positive public image
A lot of positive sentiment can be generated by a workplace that’s kind to the environment. Not only does it boost the value and marketability of a brand or company, but it also makes it more desirable as an employer.
7 Improve quality of life
Environmentally friendly office spaces often incorporate elements like green spaces or outdoor areas where workers can take a break between meetings or pause over lunch, or so-called “chill rooms” where employees can relax. If, for example, you work in an office at Melrose Arch, you can even hold your meetings at any of a number of locations outside the office.
8 Foster a sense of community
Outdoor public areas or open-air spaces within larger office developments draw people outside and make it easier for them to interact with one another