After more than 50 years serving businesses in Houston and Austin, Texas, we have seen a lot of changes occur in our markets and in workplace culture. Since 1962, the workplace has changed dramatically, but one thing has stayed the same.
Businesses face a laundry list of challenges.
In Houston right now, many businesses are dealing with the drop in oil prices. The Houston economy is more resilient than it once was. Higher education, medical and technology industries continue to grow, but there is still a ripple effect from the decline in upstream oil and gas. In Austin, our customers are facing an entirely different challenge: the battle for talent and quality office space. While residential and commercial development is still strong in Houston, it is BOOMING in Austin. Companies are vying for talented workers and premium square footage as startups continue to grow and west coast businesses flood into the state's capitol.
Companies and organizations in both Austin and Houston are looking for answers to their differing business dilemmas. If you're one of them, some of these answers can come from looking within the four walls of your office. We have a couple of articles that will show you how.
An informative article from Steelcase entitled Is Your Workplace Ready for the Interconnected World? gives many examples how organizations in declining or expanding markets can succeed.
We have included a few excerpts below, but you can click here or on the image below to download the article.
“There’s no company that isn’t struggling with this new business environment. Everywhere, resources are stretched thin from downsizing and a struggling economy. Business issues are more complex than just a few years ago, more organizations are working on a global platform, and every company needs its employees, along with every other corporate asset, to do more than ever,” says John Hughes, principal of Applied Research & Consulting, the global Steelcase consultancy on work and workplace.
What happens to the real estate carved out of individual workstation footprints? Some is subleased or rented out. Other companies move to a smaller office. What’s important is to understand what the right balance is of individual work spaces and shared spaces. Creating the right spaces is about understanding the range of options that help people work most effectively. Simply shrinking your real estate footprint, like putting yourself on a crash diet, just makes you thinner, not better. “Compression alone has limited benefits. If you treat your real estate like an asset, you don’t just shrink, you rethink the space to help people work in an interconnected world,”
Creating workplaces for an interconnected world allows companies to stop reacting to volatile and uncertain markets and instead focus on the connection, collaboration, and inspiration businesses need to innovate today.
Skype competes for top talent throughout Europe, Asia and North America. The interconnected office article mentions how they attract and keep their workforce.
“We built a place that attracts and nurtures the kind of people we need. That includes a workplace that supports different ways of working, services that help people balance their work and personal lives, like remote work and free lunches, and enough flexibility in the furniture and systems to adapt to changes in business,” says Quinn. “People really like working here, and they can tell what kind of place it is within minutes of walking in. When potential recruits take a tour, they understand that we’re a global company driven by collaboration and innovation. We hear a lot of them say, ’Yup, I could definitely work here.’”
Using research and insight provided by its manufacturers, McCoy-Rockford’s solutions address specific needs a competing business struggles with today. They create workspaces that help attract and retain talent, increase productivity and improve employee engagement. According to Amy Lopez, Executive VP of Sales and Design in Houston, employers in Austin and Houston are doing several different things to bring in the best employees and keep them. “We support them by ensuring they have the most current products with enhancements that meet the needs of their employees. Workplaces need to be flexible enough to provide collaborative space for team interaction as well as private areas for focus and critical thinking.”
Next to human resources, the second biggest cost to a company is their space, whether owned or leased. [CEO Ken Beaver] detailed how businesses have always struggled to decide how much space is needed and how beneficial that space is in supporting the business. “Not only do we believe that space matters, but there is also a significant social aspect to the work environment that really adds to an employee’s engagement, how productive they are and how committed they are to the organization.” McCoy-Rockford’s products and services are designed to maximize the use of available space.
“We certainly are not recession proof, but we’re focused on building our marketing strategies so we are as diversified as possible within the industry we serve.” One way to ward off the effects of a recession is to support clients in maintaining their workplaces. Within the energy market, for example, there is a great deal of re-configuring, downsizing and re-stacking – areas in which McCoy-Rockford can continue to help maintain and maximize the space in which clients have invested.
One of the largest sectors served by McCoy-Rockford is healthcare. They promote wellness and and improve patient outcomes with furniture and products to increase family participation in the care and decision making for their loved ones. The company’s healthcare products are also purposely designed to increase productivity for hospital staff. McCoy-Rockford has worked closely with medical clients and the architectural and design community so Houston can continue to provide high quality healthcare.
To do this, the environment must be supportive, welcoming and engaging. At the same time, the healthcare market is highly competitive. Consumers compare hospitals and doctors, and the quality of the surroundings is one factor that is taken into consideration, even if it is only on a subconscious level. This means McCoy-Rockford’s health care clients are continually investing to support the brand, the customers and to increase revenue and ability to stay relevant in the marketplace.
The Future of Austin and Houston
We're excited about the future of Houston and Austin. We think both are great cities to work in. We're working hard to make our customers truly GREAT places to work. These companies and organizations are doing incredible work, and that work deserves its place. If you want to be a great place to work, contact us today and we will help you:
Optimize Every Square Foot
of real estate
as a natural way of working
Attract, Develop, and Engage
great talent; people really want to work there
Build the Company Brand
a person’s wellbeing