The Attractive Workplace : Are the Site Offices Meeting the Employees´Needs?

University essay from KTH/Fastigheter och byggande; KTH/Fastigheter och byggande

Abstract: Previous research have shown a possible relationship between the indoor work environmentand the impact it has on the employees’ performance. Different factors can affect theperformance; physical parameters, such as ventilation and air quality, noise levels, thermalclimate, lighting and access to daylight, as well as the level of flexibility of the work, furnitureetc. Therefore, this study aims to investigate the quality of the indoor work environment at siteoffices within Company AB in Sweden. Further, how the physical and the psychologicalenvironment play an important role regarding the attractiveness of the workspace. The studywill only focus on four physical parameters affecting the physical functionality of an office; airquality, noise, temperature and lighting. The following research questions were asked: 1) Whatdifferent types of site offices can be identified in Sweden and what are the commonly usedoffice layouts? 2) How well does the actual indoor work environment at site offices align withthe restrictions by the Swedish Work Environment Authority? 3) How is the indoorenvironment of the site offices perceived by the people utilizing the workspace? 4) Which arethe most important parts to look at to improve the attractiveness of the site offices at CompanyAB? The study is both qualitative and quantitative including measurements, interviews,meetings, and a questionnaire as the main sources of information used to answer the researchquestions.According to the results, the two most commonly used site offices are construction trailers andrented premises. The visited offices had varied layouts since they are designed to fit the needsof the specific project organizations. Out of the four parameters, noise was the only one thatentirely fulfilled the requirements in the six site offices visited.The employees perceived the physical parameters in the site offices differently. The air qualitywas generally perceived to be sufficient in the office spaces but quite bad in the meeting rooms.Multiple employees thought noise was one of the most problematic parameters and it wasshown to possibly depend on work role or task. Employees expressed the need of a versatileoffice layout, with both open office areas and smaller secluded rooms combined, which couldincrease their concentration level and decrease disturbance. Another problematic parameterwas the temperature and generally, the need was to stabilize it throughout the year. Regardingthe lighting, many expressed the desire to be able to adjust it on their own.People perceive things differently which is why a more varied and flexible office might fulfillmore people’s needs. If these needs are fulfilled, it could improve not only the physical workenvironment but also the psychological work environment and therefore increase theattractiveness and job satisfaction of the employees.

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