By Mike Morris
Diane works in an office tower in a major metropolitan area. She’s been vice president of human resources (HR) at this company for six months and is still delighted that she chose this job over the other two offers. Though her salary is a little less, she knows a great working environment enhances a “total package.” She had done her research on the building, including reading the local blog, Best Buildings To Work In.
Today and every day, as she turns into the entrance, she smiles at the thriving flowers and plants — such a nice combination each season. Her company doesn’t provide reserved parking spots for execs, but she finds a spot quickly in the well-lit and well-designed deck. Her reasonable monthly fee comes out of her paycheck. She appreciates the free parking and easy access for visitors too, especially when someone is coming in for a job interview.
The walkway is spotless and the revolving doors’ brass and glass are shining. The lobby has a gorgeous marble floor, and the elevators always work!
She appreciates that her office has a consistent, comfortable temperature and is dust-free and fresh smelling. Her allergies haven’t bothered her like they did at her previous job. In the bathroom, the stall door closes and locks easily, there’s plenty of toilet paper as usual, granite countertops are not wet, there’s soap in the touch-free dispenser, no paper towels on the floor… everything is immaculate. She appreciates the “green cleaning” sticker on the mirror. Being in HR, it’s nice that she never gets complaints about the environment. In fact, she often hears compliments. Employees are especially grateful to work in a LEED-certified building.
Sound Too Good To Be True?
It’s not too good to be true… not if you’re a facility management executive with an expert partner working in the background to make your office building look good and operate smoothly. The right provider helps enhance an organization’s brand and create customer and employee loyalty.
6 Ways To Enhance An Office Environment
1. Immaculate common areas, restrooms and office space: Janitorial service is an art and science — so choose a provider with well-trained employees who use the proper processes, tools, and equipment, along with Green Seal or other verified sustainable cleaning products.
2. Comfortable temperature, every season: In winter, employees should not have to wear woolly socks or keep space heaters under their desks. And in summer, the air conditioning should not be freezing or stuffy. Heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems need regular maintenance to keep them at optimal capacity for optimal comfort. A bonus for your business will be better energy efficiency and longer life of the system.
3. Just right lighting: Lighting that is not too glaring, not too shadowy, or not color-distorting is key. Employees need to see their computers, papers, and other items without eyestrain. Lighting should create a mood that enhances productivity. Again, better energy efficiency will be the result of a well-designed and maintained system.
4. Landscaping that welcomes people: Your grounds give employees and customers a visual of your brand as soon as they arrive. Whether you’re going for the “wow” factor or just a clean, fresh look, professional landscaping shows visitors and employees that you pay attention to detail.
5. Valet parking, shuttles, or parking management for safe and convenient parking: There’s nothing worse than circling a parking lot or ending up parking in a dimly lit corner of a deck’s lower level. A parking vendor can help you solve problems and get visitors and employees into the building with smiles on their faces.
6. LEED-certified or other eco-aware surroundings: The value of green buildings should not be underestimated. Employees are healthier, happier, and more productive when the indoor air quality is excellent. Reducing your carbon footprint is simply good business. Businesses that are socially responsible appeal to the most discerning employees and customers, enhancing your marketing and recruiting efforts.
Finding A Trusted Partner
Facility management leaders and anyone who spends time in a building will have a consistent, quality experience if you partner with one provider that can handle janitorial, lighting, valet, engineering, landscaping, and handyman services under one contract with a single point of contact. These types of providers staff facilities with their own expert employees (not subcontractors), which is important in terms of efficiency, cost, reliability, and management control. And in the case of multiple locations, all will be cared for with the same standard of excellence.
A well cared for building attracts and retains the best employees and customers, and helps everyone have a good day, every day.
Morris is senior vice president, Central Region, for ABM Industries. ABM is a a provider of facility solutions that has more than 100,000 employees in 300+ offices throughout the United States and various international locations.