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The quality of the environment in the workplace has recorded a major shift in recent past. A number of factors have contributed to this trend that has formed an integral part in organizations. The reasons behind this scenario are not hard to point out. First, the need attract, retain, motivate and empower workers that are geared at improving organizational effectiveness form core reasons behind the shift. In the understanding that employees form the most prized assets of any organization, the need to attach their well-being to the success of an organization is necessary.
The changing social and economic trends are affecting the design of office accommodations in the 21st Century in a number of aspects. These include changing demographics, health and safety, flexible working trends, technological advances, sustainability initiatives and employee turnover.
The changing demographic in the work place has impacted on the need to shift organizational design of office accommodations. This is because:
- The number of 18-25 active work forces has recorded a sharp decline in the recent past especially in the United States, Canada and much of Europe.
- There is recorded problem of an aging work force that is not immediately replaced by fresh and energetic group.
- A large number of people are in occupied in the advancement of their career at the expense of taking up job opportunities immediately.
The above factors have led to acute shortage of active work force. This has precipitated the need for a shift in design of office accommodations aimed at attracting, recruiting and retaining the best and talented group in the competitive market. The social aspect on the need to achieve high employee levels of satisfaction has influenced organizations to take a keen cognizance on the importance of health and safety of the employees. The design of office accommodations has therefore shifted in away that attach the greatest importance to employee health and safety for greater productivity.
In addition to the above, the social aspect of flexible working trends has impacted on the design of office accommodations in most organizations. This is because the ability to provide a comfortable and flexible work environment influences the love or hatred of office on an employee. Human beings feel relaxed in a flexible atmosphere devoid of noise and disturbance.
The economic aspect in the advancement of technology has led to paradigm from office designs full of cabinets and files to modern exquisite office designs with latest office technology devices capable of undertaking multiple tasks. These have been made so because of the need to enhance;
- Organizational image
- Greater accountability
- Greater sustainability
- Long term cost reduction
The above economic factors have played critical roles in enhancing the need for a shift in the design of office accommodation.
Furthermore, the need to entrench the culture of sustainability has influenced the design of office accommodation in that there is more attachment in the attachment of sustainable work environment that are environmentally responsible. These have been precipitated by the need to balance the demands of the present without compromising the needs of the future generations. To comfortably generate business and constantly progress in the changing economic environment, there is need to attach the importance of sustainable and responsible manner.
Whereas the above factors have led to overall improvement of employee productivity, it has been demonstrated that employee productivity has been improved by improvement in the design of office accommodation through motivation and organizational effectiveness.