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Study: Green Buildings Boost Employee Productivity

42.5 percent agree productivity higher in a green office locations

Businesses looking to get the most out of their workforce may want to jump on the green bandwagon. A study released Tuesday by the University of Burnham-Moores Center for Real Estate, San Diego and CB Richard Ellis found evidence that employees who work in LEED-certified or Energy Star-labeled offices are more productive than staffers at non-green locations.

Almost half (45 percent) of employees who moved to a green office location said they took 2.88 sick days less in the new workplace, resulting in an average value add impact of $1,228.54 per employee. Forty-five percent reported they experienced no change in sick days taken. Ten percent said they took more sick days, however all worked in Energy Star-labeled buildings that do not have air quality requirements.

From a tenant mindset, 54.5 percent strongly agreed or agreed that productivity was higher in green buildings. The average value add impact for overall productivity was $5,204 per staffer, per the findings.

"Healthier buildings reduce sick time and increase productivity," said Academic Director at the Burnham-Moores Center Norm Miller, Ph.D. "If you consider the benefits in terms of recruitment, retention of employees, less sick time and greater productivity, tenants should be willing to pay more rent for such space or require steep discounts for less healthy space."