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6 Office Amenities that Make the Difference in a Tight Employment Market

Michael Wilson | Aug 16, 2018

With US unemployment at just 3.8%, companies have their work cut out for them when it comes to attracting (and retaining) the best talent. Office amenities – just as much as ...

With US unemployment at just 3.8%, companies have their work cut out for them when it comes to attracting (and retaining) the best talent. Office amenities – just as much as salaries and benefits packages – can tip the scales when deciding where to work.

Here are a few of the ways that companies are attracting new employees with attractive office perks.

1. Hire a Chief Happiness Officer

Yes, this is one of those tech titles (just like AOL’s infamous “digital prophet”) that just makes people wince. On the other hand, the presence of a CHO may represent a desperately needed boost in productivity. Many workers say that they feel bored or disengaged at work – and according to a study by JLL, 87% of workers wish for a supervisor to monitor and improve their well-being.

2. Ditch the Open-Plan Office

Open-plan offices look sleek, modern, and inviting – but when it comes to working in them, inviting is the last thing they are. Open offices invite distraction. They let in too much conversational noise, and too much visual noise as well. Open offices can even have deleterious health effects. The lack of walls lets germs spread, leading to a 62% increase in sick days. Want to attract happier employees who work harder? Invest in cubicles.

3. Add Comfortable Desks and Chairs

Comfortable employees are happy employees. Purchasing bottom-shelf furniture isn’t likely to impress new hires. In the worst-case scenario, it may lead to long-term postural issues that can have a negative impact on employee happiness and productivity. Meanwhile, adding high-quality adjustable chairs – and telling your employees how to use them – can increase their productivity by over 17%!

4. Plan Out Co-Working Spaces

While cubicles are good for solo productivity, it’s also important to have rooms where small groups of employees can work together in teams. Different from your usual meeting or conference room, these cozy spaces are designed as customizable areas where people can collaborate. This is a great consideration to provide for people who normally work from home but must occasionally come into the others to conduct in-person meetings or tackle large project.

5. Food Options

We all love good food, and the only thing that we love more than good food is good food close by. Even if you don’t have the space or budget to open an office cafeteria, providing free snacks still represents an important benefit. Offices that provide free food to their workforce report job satisfaction rates of 67%, compared to 56% for all other workplaces. What’s more, almost 50% of job seekers report that they’d be more inclined to work for a company that offered free food.

6. Flexible Working Hours

Little by little, most workers are coming around to the idea that it doesn’t matter so much where and when you get you work done – rather, it’s how much work you do. The standard hours of nine to five don’t cut it anymore. Your employees may want to work around their children’s schedules, or they may have to collaborate with colleagues in different time zones. Whatever the reason, you may want to have your office cleaned, stocked with snacks, and well-lit at all hours of the day.

Keeping your office stocked with snacks represents a cost, as does putting up cubicles, outfitting co-working spaces, purchasing ergonomic chairs and more. Eventually, however, you’ll find that these investments pay dividends in terms of happy, motivated, and productive employees.

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