3 proven strategies to boost office occupancy and employee satisfaction

3 proven strategies to boost office occupancy and employee satisfaction
September 15, 2023
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Real Estate ROI

Companies today aim not just to fill their offices but to make them places where employees do their best work. Density helps top-tier companies achieve this goal.

Here are three proven methods to increase occupancy and improve workplace experience.

I. Increase managerial presence in the office

Utilization data from Density and qualitative research among workplace leaders shows that occupancy can increase by a significant percentage when managers are present in the office.

This isn’t merely about compliance. Many employees value a workplace where they can directly interact with leadership. This is particularly true of younger employees who benefit from in-person mentorship and professional development. A survey of 3,000+ job seekers showed that 57% of Gen Z’ers want in-person jobs — compared to 37% for Baby Boomers.

II. Create more space for focus work

Many employees are still finding the balance between in-office and at-home for focus work. The misuse of large meeting rooms by one to two people is a common problem. Our data reveals that even when smaller spaces like phone booths are available, employees still prefer larger rooms.

One Fortune 500 company, for example, is seeing its meeting rooms across two buildings being used by two or fewer people more than 75% of the time.

That might make sense when the office isn’t busy — if no one’s using the space, why not grab it? But our data shows this behavior persists even when more people are in the office, putting an undue burden on meeting rooms.

Meta’s soundproofing cubicle and Ford’s configurable furniture are examples of innovative solutions that give employees the ‘solo’ space they crave, without monopolizing larger rooms.

"The last thing we want is for people to camp in meeting rooms alone," said Gabor Nagy, a global workplace design researcher at Meta. "The Cube is solid for that need to do meaningful, focused work."

III. Energize the workplace

Low occupancy rates can make an office feel empty and demotivating. With office utilization rates hovering around 20-25%, it can be a challenge making the office feel energizing.

One Fortune 500 company used Density’s insights to 'hibernate' two underutilized floors, increasing energy and collaboration on the remaining three floors.

Bonus: our customer is now saving money and carbon previously spent heating, cooling and cleaning floors that weren’t being used.

Beyond the blueprint

Creating a desirable office environment is as much about physical elements like space design as it is about the intangibles: culture, leadership styles and how teams are able to interact.  Workplace leaders must continually keep a finger on the pulse of their workforce to make the office a place that truly matters — to everyone.