Offices must improve or become redundant

Office buildings that fail to demonstrate how they support the health and well-being of users will swiftly become redundant, according to a group of building services engineers.

A webinar hosted by the Building Engineering Services Association (BESA) heard that the pace of change in workplaces over the next decade would be “astounding”.

Frances Brown, Senior Associate at the engineering practice Hoare Lea, told the webinar that people now had far greater choice over when, where and how they work, which was fundamentally changing the way offices were used.

“Employers now need to treat staff as customers…and health and well-being is a big selling point,” she said. “We are moving towards a service model for workspaces and people will want to get what they are paying for, including the right indoor environment, rather than just a physical space.”

She said future workspaces would have to use digital systems to provide users with up-to-the-minute information about indoor conditions so they could decide “where to work and what is best for the planet” on a day-to-day basis.




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