A Welcoming Workspace

Since workers began returning to the office after the pandemic, there’s been a huge shift towards user experience in the workspace.

Just as we expect our favourite clothing, vehicle, or furniture brands to be comfortable and reliable, so we’ve come to expect our office buildings to be pleasant, productivity-boosting, creative spaces.

If your commercial office space still has dark hallways, cubicles, and a 30-year-old ventilation system, the reality is that it simply isn’t going to cut it with today’s tenants.

To boost occupancy rates and remain competitive at a time when Cape Town’s office building environment is being upgraded across the board, every building will need to be welcoming and act as a magnet for talent.

This article will take a deep dive into the various features that make a building welcoming to its occupants and find out how you can transform your office space into an environment that workers will love coming to each day.

Taking a holistic approach to building user experience

Going to work shouldn’t be a chore or something that sparks anxiety in employees – or managers for that matter.

In order to turn the office into a place that people can’t wait to visit, the entire experience of being there – from the moment we get ready to go to work until the moment we leave – needs to be seamless, enjoyable, and inspiring.

Holistic building management sees the workspace as an experience and not simply a physical place. Making your office space approachable means ensuring that these factors that contribute to an enjoyable building, are in place.

Convenience before arrival

With flexible working schedules, today’s office users aren’t necessarily going to clock in at nine and leave at five. The decision to come into the office instead of working remotely needs to be inspired by the benefits of being there and not just orders from upper management.

  • Business owners and managers can soften the psychological shift that comes with returning to the office by implementing systems to let employees know who’s going to be around on a given day, and when exciting events like teambuilding and skills development training will be happening.
  • Systems like remote scheduling, which allows employees to indicate when they will be in the office, and desk reservations for offices that have moved away from assigned seating give staff members a sense of wellbeing – especially when they get to choose what days to work remotely.

Smart parking and building access

Parking has been a major concern in Cape Town for many years and one of the best things a building can have -especially one in the CBD – is ample parking space.

  • Easy access to the office via an elevator that goes directly from the parking lot to reception without having to navigate the building’s front entrance can make the arrival and departure process much easier for building users.
  • Signage in the parking area, and throughout the building should be vivid and visible.
  • Digital sign boards which can also advertise tenant businesses and retail or dining facilities in the building can be doubly effective: acting as navigational tools and advertising and promotional opportunities.

A seamless experience in the office

From the moment a tenant enters reception to the time they leave, the experience of being in the building should be convenient and hassle free.

  • Rather than checking in with uniformed security guards, building users should be greeted by a concierge style reception and guided to the office they are visiting or working in. Security can standby to handle actual threats to safety and maintain a safe environment.
  • Access control can be automated for full-time tenants using biometric devices and chip-enabled identification that makes building access quick and non-invasive.
  • Technology can be harnessed to inform tenants about building related matters like opening hours, security issues, scheduled maintenance, and energy saving initiatives.
  • A building app, which updates users in real time, could be the ultimate solution and is well worth investing in for large buildings.

Automating building functions also allows building managers and owners to collect useful data on tenant numbers, foot traffic, the real cost of maintenance, energy use, and a host of other metrics.

Making a building more welcoming

Building owners can see a raft of benefits from a more approachable and enjoyable building environment- but how can they make it happen? A few small changes can reap large rewards.

  • Staff training. Traditionally trained workers may not have the expertise to deal with building users as guests. Retraining security and reception staff to maximise tenants’ enjoyment is essential.
  • Space redesign. Open plan layouts should take the place of cubicles and small dark offices. This can be achieved through a moderate investment in renovations, knocking out drywall partitions, and refinishing existing office spaces to achieve a modern look.
  • Connectivity. If you plan to integrate smart program technologies and communication systems, your building will need fast internet connectivity that can withstand power cuts.

Our portfolio of modern office space has something for every business

Buildings that you just can’t wait to work in may not be that common – but our portfolio is full of them.

The Commercial Space team is on hand to help desirable offices and dynamic tenants connect. Contact us today to list your building or enquire about office space to let in the Cape peninsula.

Image Credit: Photo by PHC Software on Unsplash