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Developing the return on workplace investment (ROWI) tool

Oesland, N, Tucker, MP and Wilson, HK (2022) Developing the return on workplace investment (ROWI) tool. Corporate Real Estate Journal, 12 (2). pp. 185-197. ISSN 2043-9148

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Facilities managers and the wider corporate real estate (CRE) community have increasingly become focused on cost reduction, with organisations typically viewing property as a cost burden rather than an investment. Consequently, it remains rare for organisations to include performance benefits in financial investment appraisals of workplace projects. A change in narrative is required to one where value can be demonstrated rather than simply costs reduced. Previous attempts have been made to quantify workplace performance, but a tangible tool to assist in recommending major decisions regarding changes to the workplace has eluded discovery. Therefore, the authors joined forces with the Institute of Workplace and Facilities Management (IWFM) to create the Return on Workplace Investment (ROWI) tool. The ROWI tool is a ready reckoner for calculating the impact of workplace projects (including planning, design or operation) on people performance. It can be used as part of a cost-benefit analysis to help professionals build a business case which accounts for positive factors other than cost alone. The initial step to developing the ROWI tool was to conduct an extensive literature review to determine the performance metrics that could be used to calculate a return on workplace investment. Some 105 unique and robust literature sources, with a total of 194 individual assessments of performance, were selected. Five dominant and recurring performance metrics were identified, along with nine recurring broad workplace design elements affecting task performance. Previously, there was little confidence in productivity research due to the range in performance data that various studies produce. A unique aspect of the ROWI tool, however, is that the performance data for each study was weighted to make it more relevant to real office work. The corresponding, more realistic, potential impact of workplace design on each of the performance metrics was calculated using the weighted results from all the research studies.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HF Commerce > HF5001 Business
Divisions: Doctoral Management Studies (from Sep 19)
Publisher: Henry Stewart Publications
SWORD Depositor: A Symplectic
Date Deposited: 27 Mar 2023 11:59
Last Modified: 17 Jan 2024 16:15
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/18944
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