The open office concept has increased in popularity over the past decade, but is starting to take a dip due to the lack of privacy and distractions that come with it. A study commission by Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC found that three out of four employees are comfortable with an open office concept, so long as they have access to privacy when necessary.
“The open office began as a way to encourage a collaborative atmosphere,” says Charlie Young, president and CEO, Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. “Taking down cubicle barriers and bringing people out of closed-door offices was thought to be a way to encourage more face-to-face communication.”
Instead, workers felt that they had no private rooms or telephone booths for private conversations.
The study also found that employees value quiet, private spaces more than collaborative spaces and 52% are uncomfortable working in an open office with multiple employees
Typically, people want offices that are multi-functional. For example, a mixture of private offices and open spaces for collaborative projects are preferred.
88% of employees also said they would prefer on-site food, parking, and outdoor areas.
The survey saw 34% saying a fitness club would be helpful, and only 31% would be interested in a nap room. These amenities are clearly not type priority for many workers, but may work for larger corporate campuses.
In short, office designs should be multifaceted and accommodate all working styles.