The millennial generation comprises up to one-third of the world’s population of employees and is the largest demographic of workers in the U.S. labor market. This new generation of office workers have unique sensibilities and values, and office design is increasing reflecting these values across the globe.
Office Space Layouts are Changing
The dense cubicles typical of corporate office space during the last 50 years are now being replaced with new innovative floor space. The cubicle cells are often associated by the millennials with images of white-collar despair and isolation. Cubicle life may not be depicted exactly the way it is in reality, but the millennials believe this office space design leads to meaningless work, dead-end employment and an unfulfilling life.
Google is known for taking the lead in innovative office design to be inclusive in the workplace. The office facilities are designed to promote the principle of the importance of community. Google’s unique working environments are sought out by the millennial generation, who gravitate to the strong working and social networks between employees, that Google promotes through its office design.
Millennial-Friendly Designs are Promoted by Companies Like Google.
The millennial-friendly designs adopted by Google include spaces that are open, flexible, and include collaborative workspaces. Simple changes like the positioning of desks in a communal space, rather than a cubicle, enable employees to work together directly and indirectly. There are some downsides to the open space and collaborative design adopted by companies like Google. There are issues related to more disruptions during the day by coworkers and a higher level of noise in the workspace. Employees rate private office space as the most desirable working space and prefer home offices, open floor space or collaborative workspaces. The cubicle remains at the bottom of desirable office space as the corner office remains highly sought after by employees for privacy, peace, and quiet.
Millennials Embrace Office Design that Synergizes with Technology.
Integrating technology into the office space and allowing connectivity between digital devices provide unique opportunities to work collaboratively, with greater flexibility and efficiency. Technologies such as interactive whiteboards, smart TVs and cloud computing services and collaborative software applications provide the versatility in many areas of the office valued by the millennial generation. The ability to work unrestrained by physical limitations and to source work anywhere in the world opens up opportunities to work outside the traditional office space and is considered a big perk by millennials who prefer to work remotely from home.
Carolina Services Inc. (CSI) is Charleston’s premier community space planning and improvement company. Contact CSI to see how we can help design, manage and implement innovative and cost-effective solutions to your commercial space.