Kena David, Sustainability Manager | BCCI Construction
The millennial generation is the first generation to grow up with mobile phones and ready access to the Internet. They’ve had the luxury of answers to virtually any question at their fingertips. Their lives have always been digital and connected.
This generation—now the largest in American history—has proved to be the impetus for many changes in the workplace, including the way buildings and offices are designed, operated, and marketed. The influx of millennials into the workplace and their affinity for technology has also shifted the way in which we think about our work environment. The real estate industry has seen a movement toward open office plans that inspire collaboration and offer flexibility and versatility, as well as work spaces that are in closer proximity to public transportation hubs, and an increase in urban-suburban communities. The classic American suburb with a long commute to the office is less appealing to millennials, and the 9-to-5 workday has shifted, with flexible schedules and remote working options becoming the norm.
The worlds of architecture, construction, and real estate have grown and adapted to meet these challenges put forth by millennials. Known for being civic-minded and environmentally conscious, millennials often make work and lifestyle choices that align with their values. For example, the well-known LEED certification established by the US Green Building Council (USGBC) is increasingly a factor when millennials choose a place to live or work. (LEED certification is an indication that a company or building owner is highly attuned to how its physical operations affect the environment.)
Millennial-inspired attention to matters of health in the workplace is reflected in a new certification program dedicated human health and wellness in buildings. The Delos WELL Building Standard has married best practices in the built environment with medical research around what makes people happy, healthy, and productive while spending time indoors. It is the first certification of its kind to holistically integrate specific conditions into architecture, design, and construction to enhance the health and well-being of building occupants. Delos developed this standard to uphold human sustainability and to transform schools, homes, offices, and other indoor facilities into healthy environments.
This post has been adapted from an article originally published for CREW San Francisco’s The VIEW (4th Quarter 2016). Click here to read the full article.