What makes a great place to work, and what can FMs do to help attract and retain top talent?

by Brianna Crandall — October 28, 2019 — Aramark, a global provider of food, facilities management (FM) and uniforms, announced earlier this year the release of the first issue of Work XP, an industry insights report that takes a closer look at the workforce and workplace of today and the future. The report was produced in conjunction with WORKTECH Academy, the global online platform and community for the future of work and workplace.

The Work XP report discusses what makes a great place to work and what organizations are doing to compete for these employees. The report also provides insights about the different types of employee demographics — what is different and similar among the generations in the workforce today, and what they are seeking in jobs and workplace environments.

Quenten Wentworth, president, Business Dining and Healthcare, Aramark, noted:

As the dining services provider for leading corporations and businesses in the US and around the world, we are acutely aware of the ever-changing landscape of the workplace and workforce. Work XP is a beneficial resource for listening, learning and understanding the world of work and what tomorrow may hold. Through these insights, we can begin to form the basis of our future offerings.

As the report points out, with today’s record low unemployment rates, employers are trying to find new ways to hire and retain the best talent. Attracting and retaining the best and brightest is now recognized by most Fortune 500 companies as being a top three strategic imperative for organizations to continue to innovate more effectively than their competitors.

The report cites the Aramark Business Study Trends 2018, a survey that included 40 companies and over 200 participants, which found that people want to belong to an organization that values their uniqueness and connects them to a larger mission and purpose.

The study concluded that:

  1. Small comforts dissipate stress.
  2. Health is a barometer of progressive evolution.
  3. Social experiences at work increase happiness.
  4. People are creating new ways to define the way in which they sustain themselves.
  5. Employees want to feel their company is a part of something meaningful.
  6. Nature inspires productivity.
  7. Diversity sparks pride.

FM-related suggestions in the report to make workplaces more attractive to top talent include:

  • Avoid making the workplace feel too corporate. Add plants, natural light, artwork, comfortable chairs, snacks, coffee, tea, and personal touches for a more home-like atmosphere.
  • Create sanctuary, space, or room where employees can take a break and unwind.
  • Support wellness and healthy lifestyles with on-site gyms and bike rooms; offer healthy and interesting food and drink experiences.
  • Provide spaces where coworkers can gather together for coffee, meals and meetings.
  • Harness employee desire to positively impact the world; pursue sustainable practices such as recycling and provide a compost area.
  • Bring “biophilia” (love of nature) principles and benefits into the workplace — from more plants and hydroponic vegetables growing in workspaces, to the use of more natural materials like wood and stone, to making the most of natural light.
  • Provide outdoor seating where possible, as well as walking paths and bike paths, to enable employees to eat lunch outside and enjoy fitness opportunities.

The Work XP report is available for download upon brief registration on the Aramark website. Aramark is in the customer service business across food, facilities and uniforms, wherever people work, learn, recover, and play. The company’s approximately 270,000 employees deliver services to millions of people in 22 countries around the world.