Is ‘green office envy’ the way to attract the next generation

Last updated: 10th October 2022

Creating offices that make the younger generation green with envy is key to attracting the highest calibre workers in 2023, according to one of the UK’s leading providers of commercial planting and landscaping services.

phs Greenleaf says there is already a shift in how big brands are designing their workspaces to attract the best employees – and the key is to make it flexible and green.  

Businesses are rethinking how they work. The younger generation in particular want more flexibility about where they work – an inevitable bioproduct of the pandemic. It is all about providing flexible and inviting, less traditional, working spaces that promote well-being, productivity and creativity.

Many businesses are choosing to close smaller offices to concentrate on ‘super hubs’ filled with plants and natural materials, known to improve health and well-being. Here, staff have the freedom to choose their workspace on the day through the concept of ‘non-identity desking’.

“The key to success for non-identity desking is to create beautiful, inspiring spaces to work that take people away from the usual office desk environment,” said Emily Vernon, Managing Director of phs Greenleaf.

“This could be booths surrounded by plants, living walls or moveable cabinet planters and divider planting troughs that create flexible working areas. As well as providing health benefits, plants also absorb noise, so they are ideal for creating peaceful, productive working environments.”

There is science behind having greenery at work. NASA’s famous Clean Air Study showed that plants act as a natural air filter removing air pollutants and carbon dioxide and breathing more oxygen into a building. This improves the physical health of those using the space and tackles ‘sick building syndrome’, where fresh air and natural ventilation is sacrificed in favour of reduced energy costs, causing a rise in airborne illnesses and more sick days.

Plants create a sense of well-being and calmness too. ‘Biophilia’ is our innate connection to nature and the concept centres around how plants, trees and natural materials improve our mood and our mental well-being. Studies have shown that productivity in an office can rise by up to 15% simply by introducing more plants.

“There are lots of ways to incorporate plants and trees into a working environment,” added Emily. “Some big brands have large budgets to create inspiring exterior and interior green landscapes that encourage more creative and fresh-thinking people to join the team and promote a new culture within the business. This is a growing trend and we’ve seen everything from full-size trees installed in canteens to roof gardens and plants being built into the very fabric of a building.  

“However, even small changes can make a big difference. Ensuring there is something green to look at in every corner of your building, from flowers in reception to desktop planting, can have a positive impact. We’ve been providing planting and landscaping services to businesses for over 25 years so talk to us about how we think planting could be introduced in your building.”

phs Greenleaf provides everything from artificial and living planting and indoor and outdoor landscaping to living walls, grounds maintenance and Christmas trees and decorations.

N.B. The information contained in this entry is provided by the above supplier, and does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher

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