The 4-Step Formula to Measure Your Business’s Workplace Productivity

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By Dan Adamski, Managing Director, Jones Lang LaSalle

Today’s leading businesses are rethinking their workplace strategies. Companies are looking to design and occupy spaces that better reflect and serve end goals. This post is the fourth in a series based on research from JLL’s Workplace Strategy team, featuring JLL’s newly released infographic—Measuring Your Workplace Productivity.

According to Jones Lang LaSalle’s Global Corporate Real Estate Trends 2013 report, workplace productivity is top of mind for today’s corporate real estate executive. Why? Well, for starters, high workplace productivity leads to superior business results and improved employee engagement.

JLL also found that among corporate real estate executives, 73% “face high expectations from the C-suite to improve workplace productivity,” and “62% face high expectations for improving people productivity.”

Based on this demand, it’s critical for executives to learn how to optimize workplace strategy to improve productivity—and make a meaningful impact on your bottom line. The challenge, however, is that a standard formula for measuring productivity in the workplace has not been widely established.

Here at JLL, our strategy experts have created a measurement approach based on four potential achievements that offer a solution to measuring workplace productivity. To measure your workplace productivity, we suggest setting goal metrics aligned with internal strategies to meet the following four goals, outlined below.

4 Ways to Gauge Workplace Productivity, Exceed Expectations

1. Ensure the Balance of Supply and Demand 

WorkplaceProductivityInfographic_1SupplyDemandEnsure that your business is able to accurately forecast appropriate supply with consumer demand. The alignment of supply and demand enables a truly productive workplace, and allows for the best use of your space. For example, CRE professionals often predict demand for space (in square footage) based on market data. We can check proper alignment of supply and demand by subtracting actual demand from forecasted demand.

I’d also recommend taking a look at your internal response rate when supply is not calculated properly. How quickly does your company compensate for the missing supply or overages?

Choose the appropriate metrics for your team, and calculate them on a monthly, or quarterly basis. From there, adjust your forecasting methods as needed.

2. Optimize Internal Information Flow

Businesses are looking toward more collaborative space to spark innovation and encourage idea share. To measure the impact of collaboration by channel, take inventory of:

  • WorkplaceProductivityInfographic_2InfoFlowThe number of impactful, informal discussions, as well as the number of discussions that are derailed by unrelated conversations.
  • The number of problems solved through teamwork scenarios.
  • The number of days it takes for a decision to be made.

Meet with your team, and ask them what works and what doesn’t when it comes to internal communication. Or, test your employees in various settings. Observe their performance in group settings versus isolated settings. Then, tailor your workplace strategy to reflect preferred methods of communications. For example, if your team is more decisive or efficient collectively, then build out more shared spaces, like lounge areas.

3. Gauge Employee Success

This measurement metric assesses employees’ perceived productivity compared to their actual productivity. Often, a company may find that an employee’s perceived level of productivity varies based on the structure of the workplace.

WorkplaceProductivityInfographic_3EnableWorkAs described in The Growing Role of Office Space in Business Success, an effective workplace strategy identifies operational changes needed to create an environment that fosters productivity. To improve individual productivity and employee happiness, companies should identify and remove potential distractions, allow for flexible workplace settings, and obtain the appropriate infrastructure for fluctuating technological trends.

To accurately measure whether you are enabling work, measure individual efficiencies, how often speed-to-market goals are met, or increases and/or decreases in overall revenue per employee.

4. Grow and Encourage Relationship Building

Identify how employees’ sense of community impacts overall business performance.

WorkplaceProductivityInfographic_4RelationshipsAs discussed in JLL’s whitepaper, What Makes a Workplace Great?, “Creating a collaborative community of cross-functional workers who want to interact together to solve challenges is a fundamental workplace strategy.” Companies should provide access to collaborative workspaces to foster an internal sense of community.

Stronger internal relationships can elevate employee happiness, and ultimately, productivity. To measure this goal, take a look at employee retention rates, internal satisfaction and your team’s ability to attract additional talent.

Ultimately, business results will be the fundamental indicator of the effectiveness of workplace strategy. Visit JLL’s full Measuring Your Workplace Productivity infographic for more information on how to utilize important facets to improve business results. Visit the full series for more on workplace strategy.

Have questions on how to improve workplace strategy and productivity in your office? Contact me for more information at spaces@am.jll.com.

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About the Author 

Jones Lang LaSalleAs Managing Director in JLL’s Tenant Representation Group,  Dan is responsible for all client requirements in Western Pennsylvania and West Virginia. He specializes in Tenant Representation. View Dan’s full bio to read up on his experience.