In recent years there has been a growing trend of businesses welcoming pets into the office. From dogs and cats to fish or even hamsters, ‘hiring’ furry co-workers is becoming an increasingly popular business strategy.
Is there more to having office pets than just the novelty factor? Employers are investigating the benefits of office pets, and studies show that having pets in the workplace can have a positive impact on employees, from improving morale and reducing stress to boosting creativity and productivity.
Today let’s explore why your business should consider welcoming some four-legged friends into the workplace.
Benefits of Office Pets
Improved Employee Health and Morale
Animals provide a positive and friendly environment that can make employees happier and more relaxed. Since pets help reduce stress and anxiety, their presence can lead to higher productivity.
Having a pet-friendly office can also reduce absenteeism, as employees who are able to bring their pets to work are less likely to take time off. This can be a particularly important factor for people who bonded with new pets while working from home during lockdowns and now dislike being separated, creating a more enticing workplace.
In addition to boosting morale and reducing stress, having pets in the office provides significant physical health benefits. Dog ownership in particular is associated with a lower risk of heart disease and improved cardiovascular health. Similarly, cat owners tend to have lower blood pressure compared to those without pets. Regular exposure to animals like dogs and cats even strengthens immunity, lowering the risk of allergies and illnesses caught outside the home. This helps employees stay healthy, reducing sick days.
And, of course, having pets in the office can encourage employees to be more active. Taking a break to walk a dog or play with a cat can help employees get up from their desks and move around, which can have significant health benefits.
Increased Employee Engagement
Having pets in the office can do more than just boost employee morale and provide health benefits. They can help increase employee engagement, which leads to stronger relationships and better collaboration. When a pet is present in the office, employees are more likely to interact with each other and with the pet, creating a more positive and social workplace. Engaged employees are known to be more productive, have higher job satisfaction, and are less likely to leave their positions.
Additionally, pets in the office stimulate creativity and innovation. They serve as sources of inspiration, encouraging employees to think outside the box. Employees who have dogs in the workplace report higher job satisfaction, increased teamwork and communication, and enhanced problem-solving abilities.
A pet-friendly office also aids in recruitment and retention efforts. It attracts employees who have a passion for animals and contributes to a positive work culture that employees take pride in. Employees allowed to bring their pets to work express increased loyalty to their company.
Lastly, pets contribute to increased productivity. Happy and engaged employees are more likely to be productive and focused on their work. Employees who are permitted to bring their pets to work experience lower stress levels and higher job satisfaction, resulting in increased productivity.
Positive Brand Image
In addition to the benefits for employees, a pet-friendly office can also help improve a company’s brand image. Being pet-friendly shows that the company cares about the well-being of its employees and values creating a positive and welcoming environment.
It also increases customer satisfaction. Clients visiting an office and being greeted by a friendly and playful pet tend to feel more comfortable and at ease. This leads to an overall positive experience and potentially increased customer loyalty.
It’s an especially great indicator of social responsibility if your office pets are fostered or adopted, helping charities and keeping animals off the streets. Similarly, you could consider sponsoring an animal charity, which we discussed in an earlier blog.
Will you be getting a pet for your office, or bringing yours in for a day?