Employers who want to attract top talent and retain those who already work for them are constantly trying to come up with ways to make employees happy. Companies such as Google and Facebook have spaces that are designed for leisure. Microsoft, on the other hand, created outdoor working stations for employees who want to rest and work under the sun.
Other companies give out other benefits such as providing in-house fitness centers, free food, and laundry services. These perks can now be found in most companies regardless of their size and industry as employers strive to make employees as comfortable as possible.
But should more companies include communal showers as an office perk?
With the world spending eight hours a day on average inside an office setting, this is where we should focus our efforts by installing showers inside offices to increase comfort levels and make employees happier and more productive.
Many people already shower once they come home from work. This has plenty of benefits.
Those who work manual labor sweat a bit, and showering allows them to refresh before they meet family and friends in the night. Those who are in the office gain from showering after work, too, by removing the sweat, dirt, and germs that may have stuck onto their skin throughout the day. Whether under the sun or in an air-conditioned room, work can make a person sweaty — and that is even before they have a workout during their break.
Moreover, a shower after work is a relaxing activity, especially if there are water heaters being used. The warm water soothes tired muscles and empties the mind of daily stressors. Even just the act of standing under a shower is relaxing, as it lets water run down all parts of one’s body.
Those who commute to work can accumulate sweat and grime on their bodies even before stepping a foot in the office. Having a shower first will prevent further contamination, especially when they are required to wear business casual dress for work.
It may also encourage workers to either walk, jog, or bike to and from the office. Knowing that they will have access to a shower, people will be more willing to try out alternative forms of transport — once that will keep them healthy and fit as well as aid in decongesting the road and fighting climate change.
In addition, people often take long showers in the morning to prepare for their day. Current studies have found that a shower can actually boost mental clarity and productivity, which might be an added reason to push employers into installing office showers.
In Tandem with Office Gyms
Providing in-office shower facilities will encourage employees to join fitness programs. This is crucial because sedentary lifestyles are associated with obesity and various health conditions such as cardiovascular diseases, respiratory problems, type-2 diabetes, and lower back pain.
Not only will this make them healthier; it will also make them happier by allowing them to relieve stress before starting their day at work.
Here, the office showers are particularly helpful as it gives them one less reason to skip their workout before work. Installing an office shower makes most sense if the workplace also has a gym.
How to Design an Office Shower
People have to be comfortable when they are in the workplace, and a shower can contribute to that.
First of all, there should be separate shower stalls with doors that have locks on them. These areas should ideally have hot water systems or heaters. A small bench for people to sit while washing up would also help.
It is also advisable to place some sort of floor mat on the tiled area, as some people are known to cast their clothes onto the coating.
In addition, provide grooming products and separate — most importantly, clean — towels for everyone to use. You wouldn’t want employees to use their dirty shirts or, worse, none at all, to dry off after a bath.
Making these areas attractive is another way of encouraging employees to use them. Installing mirrors inside the shower stalls would allow workers to make sure that they do not miss a spot.
Office showers are not just for the super busy or health-conscious individuals. Their benefits have been proven to be scientific, and they can even have positive impacts on productivity. This makes it important to consider installing them in the office if employers want to make their employees happier while making the most out of their money.