Cynthia Cowen, leasing manager at HALL Group and industry veteran, discusses how she has witnessed the evolution of amenities over time, and how they are now considered critical to retaining and attracting top talent in the workplace.
The Amenity-Driven Race to Recruit and Retain
Cynthia Cowen, Leasing Manager at HALL Group
Cynthia Cowen, Leasing Manager at HALL Group and industry veteran, discusses how she has witnessed the evolution of amenities over time, and how they are now considered critical to retaining and attracting top talent in the workplace.
Generational shifts are playing a significant role in the development – and redevelopment – of office projects today. Millennials currently make up the largest generational workforce in the United States, and according to research by Gensler, shifts towards urbanization are a direct result of millennial preferences. Gensler’s 2019 U.S. Workplace Survey also states that the most effective office amenities that deliver the highest experiential impact are innovation hubs, wellness/relaxation offerings, focus rooms and green space. To accommodate these generational changes, many office developers are converting single-use office developments into mixed-use developments and are offering unique and desired amenities.
Several leading technology companies have developed their office spaces to incorporate these coveted amenities. For example, Facebook recently expanded their headquarters campus in Menlo Park, California to provide amenities including Wi-Fi equipped bus services, loaner bicycles, chef-prepared meals, a hair salon, fitness classes, dry cleaning and high-tech vending machines. Overall, office amenities have become more hospitality driven, providing every day conveniences on-site as the 9-to-5 workday has become a thing of the past.
Dallas has always been a trendsetter in terms of real estate. Just look at the developers that were founded here – Trammell Crow Company, Lincoln Property Company and several others. Our ability to lead on the global real estate stage also extends to our office developments. As new generations are dictating office space decisions, real estate developers and owners are charged with keeping up and anticipating what amenities will be able to attract and retain the best talent.
At HALL Park, we continuously look for ways to add value for our current and prospective tenants. As Commercial Property Executive shows, millennials desire hotel-like amenities that balance out work and life. We have a Director of Park Experience at HALL Park who cultivates this desired culture for our customers. We have retained one-third of the park’s 162 acres for green space and water features, incorporating jogging trails, a bike-share program, fitness center, Wi-Fi-enabled outdoor meeting spaces and a vast art collection. We have six food offerings on-site and our location next to The Star and nearby retail provides countless other dining options to the employees at HALL Park. In several years, HALL Park will also include a new five-acre programmed park, full-service hotel, high-rise multifamily and several new retail concepts as we begin to incorporate new uses into the park to embrace these generational shifts.
As companies are using office space more and more as a recruitment tool, the race is on for office projects to keep up. Amenity-driven, mixed-use developments with a focus on hospitality, are providing the high quality services that workers are looking for today, and as new generations begin entering the workforce, the desired trends in workplace design will continue to keep real estate developers on their toes.