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News Release


Practising what we preach: our strategy to create a healthy, happy & sustainable workplace

By Simon Peacock, lead director in Bristol

Today’s financial, social, and environmental challenges demand bolder, more urgent action from business. In 2016, we saw important green economy milestones. For the first time, over half of the UK’s electricity came from low carbon sources. Many of our clients embraced the implications of the Paris climate change agreement with gusto, setting stretching science-based carbon targets and committing to 100% renewables for their businesses. We also saw important political and social trends rise to the fore, the most significant being the UK’s vote to leave the EU. Staff wellbeing, the war for talent and technology transformation preoccupied the minds of UK businesses at large.

Simon PeacockAt JLL, it is important to us to respond to these challenges, and it is great to hear that we have achieved a healthy 78 per cent of our sustainability targets set out across our Building a Better Tomorrow (BaBT) sustainability agenda in 2016. Key successes included a 26% reduction in absolute energy across all corporate offices since 2012 and scooping 35 environmental industry awards. We also achieved a 38% energy reduction per full-time equivalent employee in 2016. We had a long-term target to achieve a 10% reduction between 2012 to 2017, but we’ve reached our target a year early.

Shifting the spotlight a bit closer to home, last year, we transformed the workplace for our Bristol business and achieved RICS Ska Silver, a key environmental assessment tool for sustainable fit-outs. We relocated the business to a new space at 31 Great George Street that has modernised working practices, improved energy efficiency, and created a healthy and collaborative environment. In 2016, our Bristol office set out to achieve 30 percent paper reduction per full-time equivalent employee by the end of this year. We are pleased to have surpassed this by having already achieved a 60% reduction on last year, with our number of paper print-outs going from 45,000 per month last year to 17,000. We also worked with the landlord Hermes to deliver intelligent air conditioning, allowing fan coils to automatically switch off when windows are opened for natural ventilation. 

Sustainable measures in the workplace are undoubtedly important from an environmental and cost-efficiency perspective, but so is a focus on employee well-being. With six different types of working space in Bristol, including a café, staff can choose to work in any of our 160 work spaces, including 90 desks, quiet rooms, open meetings rooms and booths.  We are also really pleased to be offer our clients workplaces in our café with wifi, good coffee and views over the city.  We also have cycle parking, showers and drying room to cater for those who want to walk, run or cycle to work. Access to a large out-door terrace and a central atrium means natural light and fresh air rates are high and you can enjoy a game of outdoor table tennis whilst taking in great views. We’ve also recently set up our own veggie patch with plenty of green-fingered staff involved, whilst there’s the opportunity to get involved in yoga classes on the terrace. 

At JLL, we see first-hand how important it is for workplace design to be fit for purpose in a changing, highly-connected world. This is why we’ve focussed on creating a new environment that transforms the way we work and takes health and wellbeing very seriously.  Of course, we won’t be resting on our laurels! This year, JLL UK has set itself 30 ambitious corporate sustainability targets up until 2020, including achieving 100% renewable electricity across the firm’s corporate estate, and working with clients to deliver five sustainable strategies or projects that will help transform property, infrastructure, and cities.