The focus of progressive businesses used to be how to foster work-life balance for their workforce. But the idea of balance implies two things at odds with each other battling for equal attention. In order to acknowledge the equally fulfilling roles that work and home both occupy in our lives, businesses are shifting their focus to a new idea—work-life integration. What’s the difference? Work-life integration lets us coordinate, blend, and holistically combine the different elements of our personal and professional lives. The result? A more engaged, healthier, and happier workforce.
The next question is how you can build an environment where this is possible. The answer is to think how your space can be both flexible and amenity-rich. But not amenities like foosball tables, nap pods, and basketball hoops in the lobby. We’re talking about amenities that make life easier for your staff, like a technology-enabled workspace that supports flexibility, onsite gyms and wellness programs that encourage healthy living, and curated events that bring space to life.
Freedom to Flex
Workday hour trends have been all over the map in recent years. Some companies still utilize a traditional onsite workday. At other companies, every employee works remotely. The reality for most professionals today is some combination of the two. The emerging answer to the need for flexible work hours is a workspace that facilitates seamless transitions between home and office, as well as adapts to the changing rhythm of the work week itself. Connectivity through company VPNs, hot desks, and coworking spaces are all ways that your workspace itself can promote work-life integration. COPT’s CIRQL properties were designed to encourage exactly this kind of flexibility. Shell tenant spaces built around shared amenities like huddle rooms, open kitchens, and focus cubbies enable flexible work and the ability to come, go, and collaborate as needed. You can even bring Fido to the office.
Work, Live, and Play in the Same Place
Optimizing space and partnering with neighbor businesses for shared amenities is another way employers can provide work-life integration to employees. You can see real-life examples of this at COPT’s Columbia Gateway properties, where innovative new buildings and a dedicated community manager offer their tenants’ workforce the benefits of personal life in close proximity to their work setting. From happy hours to yoga sessions to car detailing to integrating adventure-based fitness into new spaces like Frameworks, COPT helps its tenants keep their workforce engaged and satisfied.
So how does having an integrated workforce benefit you? Healthy, happy employees that don’t view their work and home lives as competing against each other are more likely to stick around. And once word gets out about how great it is to work for your company, you’ll attract more and better new hires.