In the business world, customer experience is considered one of the key tools for success. To attract
and retain customers, companies often invest significant resources in providing exceptional consumer
or service experiences.
However, in the workplace, organizations tend to focus more on increasing productivity, achieving
business goals, and generating profits, as well as reducing costs. This might lead to relatively low
attention and insufficient emphasis on the office or employee experience. Some organizations
prioritize work outcomes and performance, viewing the workplace as a means to achieve business
objectives rather than caring for employees' experience and well-being. This mindset also affects
employees' expectations of the workplace.
While short-term economic conditions may lead to a lack of dynamism in businesses, in recent years,
more and more companies have realized the profound impact of the office experience on employee
and organizational success and sustainability. Industry leaders aim to create an experience that can
build culture, create meaning, support productivity, enhance well-being, and attract and retain talent.
Some forward-thinking organizations have already started investing in improving the workplace
experience to increase employee satisfaction, attract top talent, and enhance organizational
performance. As people increasingly prioritize work-life balance, employee happiness, and overall
well-being, the importance of workplace experience may gradually receive more attention and
The workplace experience is not unique; it is built upon the same fundamental attributes that
influence general experiences in people's daily lives, including the frequency and impact of the
experience, novelty, engagement, and the cost versus the outcome. So, what are the key elements
of the workplace experience? How can unforgettable experiences be created? What measures can
business leaders take to ensure the value of the office space is realized? In the process of
considering the future of work, you can start with these six key elements:
1、A Sense of ldentity
Identity is the individual's recognition and sense of belonging to a specific group or organization. It
involves a person's awareness and emotional experience of their role, identity, and values within a
particular social and cultural context. The workplace needs to cultivate a distinctive and comprehensive
sense of identity, one that aesthetically creates expectations and anticipations for employees when
they enter the office, weaving all design details into a cohesive concept that makes it stand out. This
sense of identity should convey support and respect for employee well-being while also promoting the
company's mission and objectives.
2、Personalisation & Choice
In a more autonomous and liberated working world, workplaces should naturally offer persona-
lization and choice, allowing individuals to have ownership and control over their environment.
They should be able to customize or adjust the workplace based on their specific needs,
preferences, and characteristics, in order to stand out successfully in competition with other
workspaces like homes or third spaces. Human-centric design is crucial, providing diverse
environmental settings and a broader range of amenities and services for each individual to
achieve a personalized experience, rather than a one-size-fits-all approach.
3、The Right Spaces
Space plays a crucial role in the experience — the right location, appropriate spatial dimensions,
quality design, and authentic details are key to making the workplace vibrant. How people use
space, how they move within it, and the actual needs and behavioral patterns of employees are
vital considerations. Understanding how employees engage with the workspace, their activities,
workflows, and interactions with space becomes paramount. Therefore, in future workplace
planning, experience maps and storyboards may be just as important as current space planning
4、Functionality & Support
Employers sometimes strive to enhance the workplace experience through bold and creative initiatives
(decorative ones), but they overlook the most fundamental elements. The foundational infrastructure
and essential equipment required in the workplace, including power supply, lighting, HVAC for a
comfortable and safe working environment, as well as stable technical support, network connectivity,
and efficient collaboration technology platforms and devices, are all crucial for smooth and effective
work. When these basic elements are missing, no amount of design and decoration can conceal the
underlying issues. Therefore, prioritizing and meeting the needs of basic systems is essential for
providing a good working experience.
Experience is how people perceive and feel about the workplace, so focusing on the senses is crucial.
Is the workplace too noisy? Can we design spaces with acoustic privacy? Is the lighting too bright or
too dim? Is indoor air quality monitored and maintained? Meeting basic health and safety standards
alone is not enough; sensory well-being requires people to feel psychologically safe in their work
environment. Therefore, when designing and managing workplaces, attention and consideration need
to be given to creating a comfortable, reassuring, and enjoyable environment at the physical, psych-
ological, and cognitive levels. This will help improve employee happiness, job satisfaction, and
productivity, while fostering a work environment that promotes creativity and innovation.
6、Community & Pride
The final building block involves the concept of intrinsic motivation. Today's employees are part of a
collective community. They take pride in their work, feel a sense of achievement, and stay connected
with their colleagues. When individuals have intrinsic motivation, they engage in tasks because of
their interest in the task itself, the challenge it presents, or their pursuit of personal growth. Workplace
design can help them feel that they are part of something larger than themselves. By fostering a
positive team culture, promoting communication and collaboration, workplace design can help them
feel like they belong to a community, achieving better performance and results as a team than as
individuals, thus fostering a sense of pride among employees.