43 percent of Romanian employees want healthy offices and 26 percent also want them to be “green”
The pandemic has changed the Romanians’ perception about their office, with health now at the forefront. Thus, 43 percent of Romanian employees believe that the main feature of their offices should be a healthy space, based on technologies and procedures designed to protect people’s health, shows a Genesis Property survey among 1,208 employees across the country.
At the same time, 26 percent believe that their office should also be “green”, giving increased importance to sustainability, both through resource efficiency and the use of renewable energy (23 percent), as well as selective waste collection and recycling.
In recent years the sustainability of office buildings has become an important part of life for more and more Romanian employees, but, in the last year and a half, the health, both personal and of the workspace, has become an essential integral part of sustainability initiatives.
Thus, almost 71 percent consider a building to be sustainable when it is very resource efficient and protects the environment, but 48 percent point out that a sustainable building is especially one that protects the health of its occupants.
“Sustainability is no longer just a concept, but has become a necessity today, and the effects of pandemics and environmental trends have emphasised the importance of healthy and sustainable behaviours, both in business and in everyday life. In addition, sustainability initiatives today aren’t focused only on protecting the environment, but also on people’s health. A building can no longer be considered truly robust and sustainable without ensuring healthy conditions for employees and measures that actually mitigate environmental impact”, says Roxana Albu, general manager of the facility management division at Genesis Property.
Nearly half of employees believe that change must start with people, by taking care of their health and of the environment and adopting sustainable behaviours both in the office and at home. Thus, 86 percent turn off lights if natural lighting is sufficient or when a space is not in use, 65 percent turn off power supply to equipments if they aren’t using them and just as many make sure the windows are closed if the HVAC (air conditioning/cooling/heating) system is running, in order to make resource consumption more efficient. In addition, 57 percent say they would like to take part in environmental volunteering initiatives and almost 48 percent in actions aimed at protecting health.
In terms of increasing the sustainability of the office building where they work, 36 percent of employees believe that automation and control technologies are needed for maximum energy efficiency, 25 percent support the development of the circular economy, which is based on recycling and reuse, and 19 percent want solutions that bring nature indoors, such as green corners and as much natural light as possible. At the same time, more than 55 percent want technologies that allow them to set the temperature and light levels in their own office space, and more than 45 percent think it is important to have permanent access to health protection equipment.