The COVID-19 pandemic has magnified the lens on health, well-being and safety everywhere, including office spaces. With vaccine rollouts increasing, more companies are putting a return to the office on the calendar. To support companies in this endeavor, JLL is launching “Healthy Return,” an offering that cuts through the complexity of health and well-being guidelines and provides organizations with a safer, smarter and faster alternative to return to the office while being supportive of employees’ mental and social well-being.
Organizations have an unprecedented opportunity to redefine how their spaces evolve and promote health and well-being. The offering features a comprehensive assessment to benchmark spaces against leading guidelines to identify clear gaps and provide a concrete program to ensure offices are supporting a healthy post-pandemic workplace.
“A healthy workplace is one that promotes employees’ physical, mental and social well-being,” explained Cynthia Kantor, Chief Product Officer, JLL Corporate Solutions. “Creating that type of environment in the post-pandemic world will require taking a holistic, integrated approach to enhancing workplaces through improvements to the physical environment, enhanced policies and procedures and the creation of continuous programming that bolsters a culture of health and well-being.”
The case for returning
When and how to return to the office is not a one-size fits all decision. But, according to JLL’s recent Human Experience survey of office workers, 74% of people indicated a desire to return to the workplace in some capacity. While that option still seemed a far-off reality as little as three months ago, the latest vaccination numbers are providing the incentive for companies to seriously start planning their returns in greater magnitude. In the U.S. the latest vaccination rate is 2.3 million doses per day on average, and 133 million people have been vaccinated. At this rate we’d reach the 75 percent threshold, that according to Dr. Anthony Fauci would signal a return to normalcy, in around 5 months according to several estimates. JLL is currently forecasting that most offices will reach 80% capacity by the end of the year.
But it’s not back to business as usual
JLL’s phased ecosystem approach to return to the office helps organizations assess conditions both virtually and onsite, identify gaps and provide enhanced and holistic programs to support a post-pandemic workplace. Healthy Return provides a streamlined, high-touch solution for a return to the workplace through:
“As vaccines broadly roll out, it’s critical for organizations to have a structured, detailed plan for welcoming their employees back to their workspaces,” Kantor continued. “There’s also a lot of noise and confusion in the marketplace – about which health and well-being guidelines to follow, about which “healthy” solutions are tried and true, and about how to effectively support employees who may feel stressed or anxious about returning to the office. That’s why we’re committed to strategic solutions like ‘Healthy Return’ that help our clients cut through the noise in order to drive the outcomes that matter most – employee safety, health and well-being.”
While health and wellness in commercial buildings are increasingly important to help employees feel at ease with coming back to the office, they also drive value to the building owners’ bottom lines. New research from MIT shows that effective rents at healthy buildings achieve between 4.4 and 7.7 percent more rent per square foot than their nearby peers that are not certified.
JLL provides many of the services in its “Healthy Return” offering through its internal team of experts, but has also teamed-up with highly respected companies in health and safety to meet the full spectrum of needs, including air filtration, HVAC upgrades and more. Most recently, JLL teamed-up with LabCorp and Premise Health to provide U.S. clients with access to temperature and symptom screenings and Caliburn to provide health services internationally, joined forces with SGS to provide cleaning and inspection verification services and indoor air quality and risk assessments; and GoSpace AI to help occupancy planners safely and effectively coordinate in-office seating through innovative AI technology and data.