After investing in new home office furniture to make remote work life more comfortable, what’s the next thing employees added to their home office?

According to a recent study, 1 in 3 people got a dog during the pandemic. Now, as employers are looking to bring workers back to the office, who watches the pup? The solution could be a dog-friendly workspace.

Even before this flurry of “pandemic puppies,” dog-friendly offices have been growing in popularity.

Furry, wagging tails and happy dog faces can do a lot for office morale, but there are downsides too. Let’s look at the pros and cons of having a dog-friendly office.

 

1. Weighing The Pros & Cons

Beau in the office
Beau in the Office

Depending on whether you’re a “dog person” or not, this can feel like an easy decision. But same as any business decision, there are real pros and cons to weigh before deciding to make your office dog friendly.

Pros
  1. Many employees (especially younger ones) see it as a perk
  2. Avoids longer lunch breaks where employees need to go home to take their dogs out
  3. There are potential mental health benefits of having a pet in the office
  4. Pets boost morale
  5. Encourages exercise and quick walk breaks
  6. Builds a sense of community and increases collaboration every time an employee walks across the office to see the dog
Cons
  1. Some employees could be allergic
  2. Not everyone likes dogs, their needs must be considered too
  3. It can get messy (best to add extra janitorial cleaning supplies if you do go this route)
  4. Dogs can be a distraction or create extra noise
  5. They can make an office feel less professional, especially if you’re dealing with clients or customers from an older generation

How To Implement A Dog-Friendly Office

A dog near their owner's desk in the office

Google is doing a full office reconfiguration to help make it easier for employees to bring their dogs with them when they return to work. This is just one of the ways to prepare your workplace for its new pet workforce.

1. Consider An Office Reconfiguration

Overview of a reconfigured office by Benjamin Office Supply and Andy Stern

Whether it’s to accommodate social distancing or to account for dogs in the office, office reconfigurations can help you to have the best of both worlds (one of the reasons this is a top office trend in 2021). Through office design, you can create a workspace that allows dogs while being considerate of those who might not want to interact with furry office mates.

2. Stock Up On Janitorial Cleaning Supplies

A vacuum cleaning plus miscellaneous cleaning products for the office

Having dogs in the office can get messy. Even well-trained dogs have the occasional accident. This isn’t a problem so long as employees have immediate access to cleaning tools and products. A vacuum cleaner and some lint rollers are also helpful for that furry friend’s hair.

3. Communicate Clearly

Whenever you’re implementing a new office policy that impacts the workplace you should create accompanying guidelines. Allowing dogs in the office is no different. Communicate expectations clearly and leave the conversation open while employees adjust to the new dog-friendly environment.

The workplace is always changing. Whether you decide to make your office dog-friendly, have employees work from home or upgrade your office furniture, Benjamin’s expert team can help you make the transitions you need to stay current in today’s workplace.

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