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Survey confirms: DC workers want flexible office space

Capital One released the results of its Work Environment Survey. Here's the D.C- related data you need to know.

Relaxation space at Capital One's office in Clarendon, Virginia, in 2017. (Photo courtesy of Garrett Rowland)

The companies that are opening coworking spaces and startups adding collaboration space across D.C. often talk about fulfilling demand for flexible workspace. A recent study from Capital One confirmed that there is a lot of interest in such options.

The company’s Work Environment Survey measured the preference of full-time office professionals, with a special focus on millennials, from five major cities across the country, including D.C.

According to the survey, 81 percent of D.C. participants surveyed feel that flexible workspaces are important and 76 percent feel that they come up with their best ideas there. Only 41 percent don’t have access to something more than a standard desk and chair.

See the results

Stefanie Spurlin, VP of Capital One’s Workplace Solutions unit, told that the need for opportunity and choice drove these numbers across the board. So what solutions does Capital One have for businesses?

A grid system.

The option may sound traditional, but Spurlin and her team applied the strategy to the company’s newest floors at its building in Clarendon, Va.

The city grid at Capital One's Clarendon office. (Photo courtesy of Garrett Rowland)

The city grid at Capital One’s Clarendon office. Architect Gensler, contracted by HITT (Photo courtesy of Garrett Rowland)

“[The city grid] has configurable project rooms that take shape with a custom-made track system that is intended to be controlled by the user,” Spurlin said. “Complete with whiteboards, acoustic dampening and digital monitors, any team — no matter the size — can create a space that arms them with everything they need get work done, when and where they need it. This is especially helpful for the many teams at Capital One who embrace Agile and incorporate Design Thinking into their work.”

Flexible workspace options also require relaxation spaces for employees. According to the Work Environment Survey, 34 percent of D.C. participants prioritize relaxation and social areas highest among on-site benefits. Additionally, 1 in 2 of the D.C. professionals who responded believe that workplace design is equally as important as location.

Other top District-related findings included the need for healthier food options and on-site health and wellness programs.

Overall, Spurlin and Capital One seem pleased that the survey’s results affirm their design elements and look forward to sharing their evolving strategy with future partners.

“We’ve also made the results public to drive the conversation around workplace experience and design forward because we believe it is an important component of company culture and success,” Spurlin said.


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