WRITTEN BY KAISA TIKKA-MUSTONEN
Kaisa Tikka-Mustonen is Helvar’s Chief People Officer responsible for Global People practices. Kaisa is a passionate People professional and has over 15 years of experience in building Growth Cultures. She has a versatile Nordic and Global Technology Industry background, building People triggers to support Growth Strategies.
Let’s be frank — work isn’t something you only come to the office for; it’s something you do regardless of the space. But, having said that, the office space is the most important physical platform and therefore we, as a People community, should create office spaces that are as adaptable as possible. Adaptive spaces and lighting conditions have a significant effect on employees’ productivity, wellbeing and satisfaction.
Every disruption brings opportunity. Here at Helvar, the pandemic made us re-think how we work most productively. Our operating markets are slowly re-opening, and we want to ensure that we have a common way forward. The plan for us is to introduce a hybrid way of working, and we therefore need to accommodate the virtual and physical office space while offering the tools to support a hybrid office.
How to attract people back to offices?
We decided to give teams the freedom to choose how they work to boost effectiveness based on three basic workflows: focus, coordinate and collaborate¹.
It is essential to note the word ‘team’ here – we don’t work in isolation, nor do we have roles where excellent outcomes can be delivered without support; therefore, it is important for us to plan based on team-level needs. Giving our people more flexibility will cater for a positive impact in carrying a common responsibility too.
Listen to your employees and learn what they prefer to use the office for
We surveyed our teams’ perspectives during the springtime, and more than 50% said that they’d spend a minimum of half of their time at the office going forward. The majority of our team noted that they are happy to use the offices for collaborative and socialising tasks – and in some cases, for tasks requiring coordination and focus. From our findings, it’s safe to say that at Helvar, we are not yet ready to ditch the office spaces.
Ask your employees to learn what they missed about being together
It’s important to remember that we humans are built for social interaction, and this is one of the main themes that we consider when we are implementing our hybrid ways of working and re-designing our office spaces.
The main reasons mentioned in our survey by Helvarians were the spontaneous discussions and casual catchups with colleagues, moving around at the office, socialising, happy faces at work, and brainstorming. We want to ensure that we have a great working environment and place to socialise again – having fun and getting that family feeling is so important!
How do you know what the future office looks like?
It’s hard to envision and think through all the complex requirements of future offices and employee needs. Having said that, I am personally convinced that wellbeing, safety, productivity, adaptability, and sustainability are at the heart of a future design.
Sustainability in the office space can be supported easily with a modern lighting upgrade. It creates well-lit, adaptable and safe workspaces that support employees’ wellbeing and at the same time brings substantial energy savings from 50% up to even 85%², allowing you to better prepare for carbon neutral transitions.
Increased wellbeing and safety can bring about 64% less sick leave days with subsequent cost and productivity impacts³. Highly adaptable workspaces are easy to re-arrange, allowing you to create optimal conditions in any context for any future needs.
How future-proof is your office design? Read more about:
Lighting control solutions can support wellbeing and create intelligent, adaptive office spaces. Explore the benefits of renovating your office lighting.