The province of Quebec is giving its offices a makeover to increase productivity and attract more workers.
"If employees are more productive, happier and the workspace is more dynamic, I think it's a good investment," said Quebec Treasury Board President Pierre Arcand.
Open workspaces near windows will replace drab individual cubicles, and traditional conference rooms will be converted to lounges with couches, reported Radio Canada.
While the overhaul will cost the province about $20 million annually until 2028, Arcand said the remodelling will allow up to $40 million annual savings in rent.
The Société québécoise des infrastructures, which manages Quebec’s office space, excluding schools, hospitals and other buildings in the health and education networks, looked at office spaces in the private and public sectors to identify what might work best for the province’s workers.
"We want to favour collaboration, so we will cut back on closed offices to put them more central," said Sylvie Lefebvre, the director of property management at SQI.
But change should not only come in the colour of the walls.
The Quebec government must also modernize in other ways, like providing staff with technological tools to promote productivity, said Stéphane Forget, the president of Fédération des chambres de commerce du Québec.
To curb absenteeism, the province is also working on a policy to allow some civil servants to work from home.
Can your office space make you healthier?
Shared office space a social risk