The office is no longer the only place for people to work. People can work from anywhere and still be productive. In fact, a recent survey from Citrix found that 69% of hybrid workers feel productive and engaged.
The data doesn’t lie. Hybrid work is here to stay and it’s time to make changes in line with that. Starting with your office.
We’ve talked a lot about how to create a vibrant workplace in the past, but now let’s look at who should be building it. Enter: Workplace Experience Teams.
Roles for workplace experience are increasingly popping up on hiring sites. And workplace experience managers are becoming a normal part of the office hierarchy, but it may take more than one person to bring your workplace vision to life. Who should be on a Workplace Experience Team, and what should their function be? Let’s dive in.
What is Workplace Experience?
Workplace experience is the way people interact with the office and how they feel when they’re there. A more formal definition is the intersection of design, technology, and culture; an ever-evolving ecosystem made up of everything that impacts employees’ ability to do their best work.
Workplace experience can determine if, when, and how often people go into the office. If they can’t find a desk or don’t have the equipment they need, they might not plan on going back. On the other hand, a seamless experience may convince them to come in more often.
The office should be a destination for connection, but that won’t happen if no one is showing up. Engage your employees and empower them to utilize the office as a resource by thoughtfully creating workplace experiences worth the trip.
Workplace Experience Teams: Roles & Responsibilities
Your workplace experience team is in charge of upkeep, the processes, and projects that keep your workplace not just running, but thriving. Together they build strategies that give the office a purpose and make improvements that empower people to do their best work when they’re there.
Workplace experience affects more than just the vibe of your office, it is a driver of engagement, connection, and culture. That’s why it’s so important not to treat these functions as an after-thought. You need to dedicate time and resources to looking at the entire experience for your employees. If you don’t, your workplace won’t be the resource it should be for your organization.
Here’s a list of departments that should be represented on your workplace experience teams, and the possible roles they could play:
1. IT: Workplace Technology Specialist
Technology enables collaboration, communication, and office management. It’s what makes things happen. According to a survey from Ivanti, 64% of workers believe that interaction with technical tools directly impacts workforce morale and two-thirds said they believe they could be more productive if only they had access to better solutions. Without technology, hybrid work wouldn’t be possible.
A Workplace Technology Manager can build out your workplace tech stack and ensure you have the proper physical and digital tools to support your teams. Think cameras and microphones as well as software like Robin or Slack.
They also play a role in the rollout of new technology. Assisting with training, creating resources, and fielding questions from staff are critical parts of adopting any new solution. Pro-tip: Think of the 3 “i”s: integration, installation, and implementation.
2. People: Employee Experience Leader
An Employee Experience leader is the bridge between your people and your workplace experience team. They’re in charge of communicating with your teams and ensuring they have what they need to do their best work. Ultimately, they find out if your people are happy.
Collecting employee feedback and turning it into actionable steps for improvement is usually the starting point. From hybrid work strategies to company culture to workplace snacks and coffee - Employee Experience Leaders want to know what’s working and what isn’t. Once these leaders identify pain points in the office they can work with people on the team to find a solution.
People are struggling to build workplace relationships? The Employee Experience Leader can facilitate events and activities focused on connecting employees. Workplace perks aren’t relevant to those working from home? The Employee Experience Leader can add new perks, like an at home lunch stipend. No matter the problem, your Employee Experience Leader takes it on and does what they can to keep your teams happy and engaged.
3. Operations: Workplace Operations Manager
The core function of a Workplace Operations Manager is strategy and cohesion. They oversee day-to-day operations including maintenance, vendor relations, and workplace processes. Overall, they make sure things are running smoothly and do what they can to prevent roadblocks from occurring.
Based on team needs, the Workplace Operations Manager streamlines processes and builds systems that enable productivity. When a new process is put in place, they document it and share it with the team ensuring it is useful and accessible.
Your Workplace Operations Manager strives for operational excellence and makes things happen.
4. Facilities: Facilities Manager
Office real estate is one of the top expenses for any company and your Facilities Manager is in charge of making sure your investment is being utilized to its full potential. They analyze office usage and determine if there’s an opportunity to reduce your space and save on real estate costs, or if it’s worth it to expand and invest a little more.
Based on workplace trends and data, the Facilities Manager can assess how your office is being used. Are people coming into the office? Are meeting spaces being used effectively? Do you need more or fewer desks? Is there enough room for collaboration or focus work?
They look at how the office is physically being used and identify where there’s room to grow (or shrink). A Facilities Manager ensures your workplace is working for you.
A Workplace that Works for You
No two hybrid offices are the same. The end goal, however, should remain the same: build a vibrant workplace that works for you and your team. Your Workplace Experience Team can help you identify office needs, implement a new workplace strategy, and continuously improve employee experience based on feedback.
Your people are your greatest asset, and your workplace should reflect that. Need help getting started? We’ve got you covered. Robin works with companies to build hybrid workplaces every day. Check out the free, downloadable planning template below so you can follow along.