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Insightful Office Refurbishments

An office refurbishment staff survey is a great starting point for planning an office fit out. Obtaining insight into how people work and how to improve their needs will enhance your office fit out, and ultimately improve productivity and staff retention.

Companies That Use An Office Refurbishment Staff Survey for Office Fit-Outs Could Achieve Better Results

You decide it’s time for a new office interior, so you book a site visit with an office refurbishment company. The trouble is you don’t have much of a plan and you are looking for advice from the fit out contractor on what would suit your business best.

This is all very well, and an office fit out company can certainly provide lots of good advice and suggestions. However, the building is intended for your workforce, so why not ask them first?

Shockingly only 50 % of businesses ask staff for their input when planning an office fit out. Survey results reveal that 31% of people would sacrifice 1% or more of their salary for an office refurbishment and enhanced facilities!

When undertaking an office refurbishment, we always believe it’s important to understand the nature of the business and its staff before undertaking any structural changes and design.

Businesses that ask staff what they want from an office refurbishment have been known to enjoy improved staff satisfaction, retention, productivity and lower absentees.

The Advantages to Involving Staff

Employee surveys can offer insight into different job roles and how different departments interact with one another. This can help you determine the aspects of your office environment that could improve productivity and support future growth.

A sales team, for example, might prefer better communication with the marketing department, therefore an open plan space may be needed to accommodate a larger department.

Staff involvement in an office refurbishment can boost esteem and present a team-building opportunity too. Asking your staff their opinion displays how valuable they are to the company’s growth and the team as a whole.

Ultimately, if staff enjoy their office surroundings and feel it supports their work activities, they are more likely to stay and enjoy work. They will also be a happier, more productive team.

The Disadvantages to Involving Staff

When staff are asked for their input in the office refurbishment, they have been known to roll off an extensive list of costly changes, which are frankly unachievable for the budget. It’s a good idea to be clear from the start about what you are asking for and what your expectations are of the budget. This provides a starting point and helps staff understand the restraints.

What Questions Should You Ask?

Be clear that you want staff feedback on areas that they genuinely feel would improve their working life and the overall office environment.

Here are some useful questions to include in your office refurbishment staff survey:

Likes and dislikes about the current office

  • Noise levels

  • Décor

  • Layout

  • Kitchen

  • Hygiene

  • Comfort (heating and cooling)

  • Furniture

  • Work spaces

  • Technology

  • Lighting

  • Meeting room access

  • Privacy

  • Other…

Offer multiple choice and the opportunity to expand on their answer.

  1. Do you have any ideas to improve the office environment?

  2. Are there any other areas of the building that you believe need improving?

  3. Are there any teams/individuals that you need proximity to? Please provide reasons.

  4. Is there any equipment or facilities that would enhance your job role?

A booth, or break out area, for example, can offer a quiet space for making important phone calls or concentrating on a complex project.

  1. Do you have enough storage space?

  2. How could an office refurbishment improve your job role?

  3. Are there any design features that you think would suit our brand?

Creating An Office Refurbishment Staff Survey?

You could send an email with the questions, which would mean you need to analyze them one by one. Alternatively, you could use a free online survey provider, such as Survey Monkey, Google Forms and Smart Survey.

There are a few great things about using an online staff survey for your office refurbishment and they are:

  1. Most of them offer a basic service for free, or a free trial period

  2. You can review all feedback in one place

  3. They are super easy to create

  4. You can provide multiple choice questions and text boxes for providing more information

  5. You can simply email a link to staff, or send it direct

  6. Staff will find it quicker to answer the questions

  7. It looks more professional and more engaging

  8. You can easily report the findings to the office refurbishment company

  9. You can track who has filled in the questionnaire

What Is Useful Staff Feedback?

Ok, you’ve received all your employee feedback. Now it’s time to look at what suggestions you should take notice of and which you should add to the ‘not now’ and ‘no way’ piles.

It’s not unreasonable for a member of staff to suggest a comfortable space for having informal meetings, or better kitchen/washroom facilities to improve hygiene. What would be unreasonable is the demand of a Google-inspired slide instead of stairs, swings instead of regular chairs, or a fully equipped gym! Of course, some businesses do have budgets for this kind of fit out, but it is not a reasonable suggestion from an employee.

Your survey will no doubt present a proportion of staff that will focus on the look the and feel of the office. These should not be ignored. Look for sensible suggestions on colour usage and design features that could bring an edge to your office décor. It’s important to note that the colour scheme and design should be in-keeping with the brand and your core messages, as well as the environment you want to portray.

You may receive suggestions for breakout zones – such as pool tables, dartboards, bean bags etc. These can be achieved if you have the available space. If a breakout zone is important to your team, then your office refurbishment company will be able to advice on space planning and options for creating a comfort zone.

Storage is an important part of any office refurbishment, so it is good get an understanding of how much storage each staff member needs. This will help determine the requirements for furniture, built in cupboards and storage walls.

Look out for staff that struggle with noise in the office. Many people do find it difficult to concentrate in a busy open plan office that accommodates different of job roles – from sales teams to accounts. During the planning process, those that need more peace can be either be relocated to a quiet end of the office. You could also consider installing sound booths or acoustic panels to reduce reverberations.

Comments on the comfort of the office should also be listened to. Lighting, air conditioning, heating and ventilation play a major role in the productivity of staff and anyone that finds it too cold, hot, light, dark should be located somewhere in the office that suits their needs.

Involving your team in the company’s office refurbishment plans gives employees enormous job satisfaction and the feeling of belonging. A staff survey can highlight areas that should be fundamental to your office refurbishment.

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