Employees Return to Offices ‘Greener’ than Prior to Pandemic

U.S. employees have high expectations for green office spaces and expect more eco-friendly practices from their employers, according to research recently released by global hygiene and health company, Essity. The company’s survey of employees who have returned to the office at least part-time and found that 75 percent of respondents say they want a more environmentally friendly office. 

The research found those surveyed have become ‘greener’ than before the COVID-19 pandemic began. Fifty-one percent of employees working from an office say they became more eco-conscious while working from home during lockdown periods. Another 46 percent say they feel more aware of how ‘green’ their workplace is than when they worked in the pre-pandemic office. In fact, more than half (58 percent) feel their office is ‘shamefully eco-unfriendly’, with 34 percent believing the introduction of eco-friendly practices within their workplace is an afterthought.

The Essity survey found most employees working in the office (71 percent) feel it is essentially the employees themselves who are leading the charge to make sustainable changes in the workplace rather than management. Fifty-one percent of employers need to better communicate the ways they intend to address sustainability in the workplace. On top of that, 56 percent think their employees could be doing more to turn their office into an ‘eco-friendly’ place.

When asked who should be responsible, reactions were mixed.  Roughly a third of survey respondents pointed to employers, and nearly as many (28 percent) pointed to employees or a 50/50 shared responsibility between employers and employees (27 percent), representing an opportunity for companies to get their employees involved.

For more information, visit torkusa.com/sustainability.