In the past, the value competition was always focused on multi-family and single-family homes. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, this has now shifted, and multi-family complexes and offices are now competing for the same dollars. Working from home is something we can expect to see for many years to come, which impacts the amenities and expectations of individuals for both multi-family complexes and offices.
The Focus on Amenities
COVID-19 has shifted everyone’s requirements for amenities. Both in offices and multi-family complexes, the focus is now on trying to create more amenities to attract new tenants. Employees are often given a salary increase or benefits for working from home and spending more time in their apartment complexes. Therefore, they are willing to pay more for amenities to improve their quality of life when working from home. However, for offices that are keen to bring their employees back to their building, you can be sure they are going to need some good incentives to lure them back. While multi-family and office complexes never had to compete against each other in the past, they are now both looking for ways to improve the working and living experience for employees and tenants.
For many employees, they soon found their work-life balance almost disappeared overnight when the pandemic began. Workers found they quickly had to adapt to the changes the pandemic forced upon us, and if you weren’t already equipped with high-speed internet and good technology, these became almost a necessity. After a couple of months of working from their bedroom or home office and starting to feel burnt out, changes needed to be made. While some companies were already equipped for remote workers, the majority were unprepared for their workforce to start working from home. This began to take its toll on employees who found they were working more than they used to in the office, with unrealistic expectations being placed upon them. Maintaining a work-life balance has been key during the past year, but without a separate space to work, this can be incredibly challenging.
The Key Amenities for Employees and Tenants
When it comes to building amenities for offices and multi-family complexes, they are always centered around the same core principles. Firstly, convenience is a key consideration to make working every day hassle-free. Everyone expects an apartment block to be able to offer high-speed internet today, but a business center with printing facilities or private meeting spaces could be an excellent addition. In offices, employees would like to see kitchens and laundry rooms to save time and money while working by doubling up on household duties.
One great way to lure your employees back to the office is with more experiences and events. This can also be true for multi-family complexes, who should acknowledge that anyone working from home is unlikely to be enjoying the same level of social interaction they once had on a daily basis. Fostering a sense of community is essential in these hybrid work-from-home environments, especially for extroverts who need social interaction to thrive.
A big takeaway in the past year for many employees is being able to spend more time in the kitchen when working from home. This culinary experience needs to continue in offices and apartment complexes, with food trucks, special events, free lunch days, and kitchen facilities. Employees expect to be offered food options with high nutritional value instead of the generic cafeteria food they experienced in the past.
Finally, the area which needs the most focus is wellbeing and health. Working from home has taken its toll on many people’s mental and physical health, and this is something that any complex should be looking to remedy. An on-site gym is considered almost an essential facility in buildings today, and employees will appreciate being able to fit in a workout before or after heading to the office in the same building. Putting on special wellbeing and fitness events will be a great attraction for individuals working from home, and multi-family complexes should also be offering these.
As you can see, multi-family complexes and offices have their work cut out to compete with each other. For companies that are encouraging their team to continue working from home, these employees will be looking for amenities that offer them the work-life balance they’ve been missing. When it comes to welcoming employees back to the office, companies realize this will be a tough challenge. By equipping the office with state-of-the-art facilities, this will help to make the return to work a little easier on employees this year.