Generational Preferences: A Glimpse into the Future Office

Today’s post comes from IREM and Dr. Mike O’Neill of Knoll, Inc.

Recently, Knoll conducted a global research project including over 15,000 workers in 40 countries, to gain insights into how office workspace will need to be designed to best meet the needs of the emerging Generation Y, who will represent over 50 percent of the workforce by the end of this decade.

We found that Generation Y rates the importance of having a secure, engaging workplace highest along with places for informal interaction, and quality of formal meeting rooms lowest. This was the opposite of Baby Boomers who rated privacy and quality of meeting rooms the highest, and having an engaging workplace the lowest.

Thus, the future workspace will need to evolve away from exclusively supporting formal work process and individual privacy. Instead, it will need to provide a secure, appealing, work “experience” that recognizes the social context of work, and is biased towards supporting group work and informal interaction.

Employers will gain specific ideas on how to tailor the design and furnishing of spaces to meet the preferences and work patterns of the emerging workforce.

Property managers can share the insights from this research as a “value add” with owners to help them keep spaces up to date with evolving market demands, and provide useful advice to tenants on TI projects.

Learn more about this intriguing research and meet Dr. Mike O’Neill on Friday, October 14, 10:30 am to 12:00 pm at the IREM Fall Leadership Conference. Check out the entire slate of professional learning experiences at this event.

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