21 March 2017 | Herpreet Kaur Grewal
FMs should formulate a strategy to regularly monitor and evaluate the 'wellness' of their buildings, says BSRIA.
Dr Michelle Agha-Hossein, sustainable building consultant on BSRIA Sustainable Construction Group, said that from an organisational management point of view, "well-being is a major factor in work quality and productivity and, therefore, business success".
But to manage a building well, Agha-Hossein says, it must be measured.
"This is not an easy task given the intangible nature of well-being. It might be argued that assessing well-being in a workplace can be tricky and misleading as non workplace-related life events can also pose threats on individuals' health," she says.
"As FMs are trying to optimise energy performance of their buildings, in terms of installed services and building fabric, it is essential for them to also consider how they can help the occupants to better control and spend their human energy."
She says indoor environmental is a factor that can affect occupant well-being is space use.
"FMs should try to better understand the occupants' type of work, as well as their company's strategy and direction to create a space to support the needs. FMs should collaborate with their HR and ICT teams to ensure their buildings are efficient in terms of occupant density, functionality (fitness for purpose), layout, furniture, ICT, and indoor facilities (e.g. restaurant, shower rooms, meeting rooms with video conferencing facilities, etc.). In addition to personal workstations, providing designated areas for collaboration, contemplation and formal and informal meetings can significantly contribute towards workplace wellness," said Agha-Hossein.