The importance of a well-designed and properly-equipped office cannot be overlooked; details both small and large can have a substantial impact on the productivity, motivation, health and well-being of your workforce. What you may not have considered however is how the design or your office may attract of deter applicants to your company. For a large proportion of the UK workforce, the working environment is a highly important factor in deciding whether to accept a job offer, or turn down the role and continue searching.

This is according to a recent survey of 1,014 UK workers in full or part-time employment, conducted by retailer Furniture123.co.uk. The survey revealed that 53% of office workers would refuse a job if they didn’t like the office or working environment.

The primary issue appears to be location, with 1 in 2 respondents citing office location as a major factor in their decision. The ideal in this regard will depend more upon the individual employee rather than the workforce as a whole, and picking up and moving your entire office set-up isn’t exactly practical. With that in mind, let’s explore some of the more design-oriented elements to which a simple remedy could provide your company a substantial boost when it comes to hiring.

Aside from location, the most frequently mentioned factor in driving applicants away is outdated décor, with 41% of surveyed workers saying this would put them off a job offer. Coming in at a close second is a lack of natural light, with 38% citing this as a concern.

32% of respondents say that broken or outdated furniture would influence their decision, with an equal number being driven away by a dirty or unhygienic workplace.

Mark Kelly, marketing manager at Furniture123.co.uk, said of the survey’s results, “The data shows that companies need to pay attention to much more than salaries and benefits, when trying to attract top talent.  The average UK worker spends 8,060 hours a year at work, so it’s understandable that the environment can be a deal maker or breaker for many.

“Employers looking to attract the most talented staff in their field should keep this in mind when inviting candidates to interview.

“It’s not so easy to change the location of the office, however they can ensure that there are onsite catering facilities and breakout areas for lunch, and even arrange car pools or an employee bus service that connects to local transport links.

“Also ensuring the space is always kept clean and tidy, furniture is in good condition and the décor feels fresh and modern is a great place to start.”


Sam Bonson

Sam is an aspiring novelist with a passion for fantasy and crime thrillers. He is currently working as a content writer, journalist & editor in an attempt to expand his horizons.
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