Taking a Holistic Approach to Your Restroom in 2016

    The past several years we have witnessed tremendous evolution in work patterns due to powerful trends that include worker mobility, hoteling, increased emphasis on collaboration and more flexible working hours. For certain, how we think about and engage in our work has definitely changed, and that means workplace environments have had to respond to these changes too.

    One area that continues to receive lot of attention over the past few years is “green” building. You have probably seen or taken part in one of the many efforts to build or retrofit existing office environments to accomplish important environmental objectives, including reducing carbon footprint and energy consumption as well as incorporating sustainable materials in the office space.

    While all of these efforts to improve sustainability are solid, many organizations are now looking at ways to reach the next level—taking their green initiatives beyond simply checking off minimum requirements. They are reaching past the basics to consider things like whether the building design promotes the health and wellbeing of their employees and guests, whether it meets the needs of multi-generational workers and whether it incorporates biophilic elements, such as natural light, plants and fresh air that have been shown to improve morale and productivity in the office.

    With these trends in mind, architects and facility managers shouldn’t forget to take a close look at restroom planning. It is well known that incorporating features such as touch-free soap dispensers, faucets and automatic hand dryers will reduce maintenance efforts and costs as well as promote water and energy conservation. But it is also important to consider how making your restroom a touch-free environment can positively impact occupant and guest health and wellbeing—reducing the potential for the transmission of germs and other harmful organisms and reinforcing their perception that they are in a clean and safe environment. Additional features can enhance the positive health attributes of restrooms even further, such as hand dryer antimicrobial technology and HEPA filtration.

    This year, we expect to see a growing emphasis on this holistic approach to workplace design and management that will not only deliver benefits in terms of reduced environmental impact, but also in employee satisfaction and organizational productivity.

    It is a welcomed trend, and one that World Dryer has been working to address with all the products we design and manufacture. Take a look at the new hand dryers we have introduced over the past several years and I think you will see that catering to the changing needs of users has always been top of mind here. Happy New Year!