It is no longer unusual today to have three different generations working together in the same office. In New Zealand, the employment rate of people aged 20 years old and above is high. The country ranks 7th in the world when it comes to employment-to-population ratio, with a grade of 73.1. This just shows a diverse workplace is no longer a rare sight.
With varying work ethics and mind-sets, Baby Boomers are working side by side with Generation X and today’s Millennials. To overcome any differences, managers are relying on the workplace itself to accommodate the varied needs of employees. More often than not, this comes down to design.
Each generation of the labour force has different needs. As such, you will need to take these needs into consideration when designing and furnishing an office space. The key is collaborative design.
An age-neutral workspace does not require expensive pieces. Christchurch-based furniture manufacturer Bishop Interiors shares that office furniture can be eco-friendly and high-quality without the high price tag. You just have to know which pieces suit the needs of the company and employees.
Furnishing Completes the Design
Start with the workstation. An age-neutral workspace is achievable by providing areas employees can personalise. Be it the desk, chair, or storage units, employees will want to give their station a touch of character.
The younger generations will want to put their mark on the space whereas the older employees will likely put accessories and trinkets that give their desk a more corporate and formal feel.
Changing Workplace Environment
You will also see more open areas with multiple functions. Workplaces will become more mobile and compact, no longer requiring that much floor space. Furniture will be more innovative and ergonomic, minus the bulkiness.
A sense of community will also be a trend in multi-generational offices. Millennials are interested in supporting causes, so spaces where they can post and showcase these are important. Each workstation might be separate, but bringing them closer makes the office more interactive yet with a sense of openness and privacy.
Your employees will likely adapt to whatever kind of workplace you have, but it certainly does not hurt to help them out by giving them a space where they can work more collaboratively and efficiently with everyone in the company.