We are experiencing a shift in office leasing. No longer are potential tenants primarily focused on building features, instead, they are changing their focus to the available amenities located in and around the building. Questions as to whether an office has a fitness center, its walkability score, and common areas in which to meet are becoming the norm. Ultimately, a prospective tenant has one focus: Will this building help my employees find work-life balance?
Studies show that the lack of work-life balance is leading to very unhealthy levels of stress. Gallup says stress causes 60 percent of lost workdays, and healthcare expenses are 50 percent higher among stressed workers. Some of the environments and tools that are leading companies to be more efficient and creative are also leading employees to be more stressed. Productivity decreases 66 percent due to constant noise in the office and 51 percent of workers say they have no place to step away and be re-energized. With technology allowing us to connect whenever and wherever, employees are feeling overwhelmed. Work-life balance is becoming a necessity, not just a concept to hope to achieve one day.
At The Campus at Legacy West, one of our leasing assignments, we are branding our work-life balance experience as “Save your Saturday.” As we repurpose the former JCPenney campus, we examine what features and services we can add to alleviate the stress that comes in a workday and provide time on the weekends to relax and unwind.
Little tasks take time away from family and friends on a Saturday. Already on-site at The Campus at Legacy West is a daycare center, a staff of doctors, a pharmacy, and a 24-hour pickup and delivery laundry service. By 2018, we plan to add a pet care facility and kennel, a salon, and additional space at the fitness center for spin, yoga, and Pilates classes. With amenities like these on-site, you can quickly take care of these tasks during the week and save Saturday for what you ultimately want to do.
Incorporating amenities helps alleviate stress and allows employees to flourish throughout the week and not be concerned and preoccupied with what they need to do on the weekend. The creation of work settings that can foster collaboration or provide privacy offer opportunities to balance the rigors of professional demand and productive creativity.
As the workplace shifts, wellness-focused amenities will be imperative to recruit and retain high-caliber talent. Even though 90 percent of office buildings cannot house all of these amenities, any portion of these may be nearby or placed on-site, so prospects and tenants need to know how close these services are to your building. Finding work-life balance is no longer a concept, but it is now becoming a reality.
John Conger is an executive vice president in the Dallas-Fort Worth office of Colliers International.