Summer is the time of resting. For many businesses July and August mean slowing down, fewer orders, less sales. Most employees choose the time to go on vacation. Still, throughout summer at leas half of the employees stays in offices. There are even those who spend the hottest months of the year at the office and go on vacation in spring or autumn. As people who work in summer have to fulfil not only their own duties but also their colleagues', it is extremely important, from the point of view of the employer, to provide them with conditions allowing them to work productively despite hot weather.
Eyal Litwin, Vice-President at Adgar Investments & Development Ltd., a company investing in office space in Poland, Israel, Canada and Belgium, pays attention to modern office solutions, which are important for the employees' comfort especially in summer.
1. Air conditioning with humidifier
Temperatures in Poland from June to September frequently are higher than 30 Celsius degrees, thus air conditioning becomes indispensable in offices. The most advanced systems not only cool the air but also humidify it (so called HVAC systems) and allow for individual settings in each room.
2. Access to fresh air
Air conditioning in offices has its advocates as well as its adversaries. There are people who despite hot weather want fresh air, thus it is extremely important so that the employees could open or at least leave windows.
3. Panoramic windows with dimming option
From tenants' point of view the more windows there are in an office building the better. Panoramic windows, frequently reaching from floor to ceiling, are very popular, especially especially on southern and western façades. In addition to the aesthetic values, they guarantee maximum exposure to natural light. It is also important to provide blinds or curtains so that they could be used quickly and easily in sunny days.
4. Green area around the office building
From the point of view of the employees working in an office building, the number of windows is just as important as the view. People who spend the summer in the city, those who just returned from vacation and those who are yet to go find green areas soothing and relaxing. Inner courtyard, isolated form the hustle and bustle of the streets, is a strikingly advantageous solution, which provides peace and quiet.
5. Architectural design of the building
Work comfort in an office building largely depends on the architectural design and the highest quality of the materials used. In the case of buildings whose façades are glazed it is very important to use glass with high parameters of thermal insulation, high radiation protection factor and the highest safety standards. Besides, façades covered with elegant pale sandstone, which reflects sunbeams, largely reduces the temperature in the building.
6. Parking lots in an underground garage or in shade
Employees driving to work should be able to leave their cars in a shaded place, an underground garage or an above-ground shaded garage. When a car is parked in an open space in hot weather, after several hours the temperature inside may exceed 50 Celsius degrees. Touching hot steering wheel or gear knob can hinder driving. New comfortable parking access technology based on license plates system is another example of value added. It is useful especially when it is raining or when the weather is hot as it is not necessary to open the window and use a proximity card to enter the parking area.
7. Security measures to prevent power failures
Violent storms are an inherent part of summer and we are used to that. The storms scan cause electricity supply failures. In the modern world, with compete dependency on electrical devices, power supply security and continuity is crucial for office space tenants. That is why modern office buildings have independent power lines, standby generators, and central UPS systems which provide uninterrupted power supply when the main power fails.
8. Sports and recreation centre with a pool
Modern office buildings provide the employees with great work conditions and active rest opportunities with no need of leaving the building. Such additional services can be exemplified by nearby sports and recreation centres with gym, pool, fitness, and squash, and even spa. Swimming is a great way to cool and relax after a busy day at work.
9. Restaurant with refreshing beverages
High-standard office buildings provide many additional facilities such as access to a nearby restaurant, where less formal business meetings can be held and where one can have lunch. Summer menu should include refreshing meals and iced beverages. The restaurant and café should have air conditioning and gardens, additionally they should be linked with the office by an underground passage so that one could access them without getting outside.
10. Services online
Modern technologies create an opportunity to have direct control over work conditions online. Services online include contact with maintenance services, viewing menu, placing orders at a nearby restaurant or café, booking conference rooms and access to live traffic webcam pictures of routes around the office. Such solutions make it easier to do many things with no need of leaving air conditioned space.