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Second Annual Capital One Survey Reveals What Chicago Professionals Want in the Workplace

July 31, 2018 at 9:16 AM EDT
88% of Chicago office professionals feel that a flexible workplace design is important, up three points from a year ago

CHICAGO, July 31, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Now more than ever, workplace design and environment have become a significant part of company culture and a key driver of employee satisfaction. It can help inspire workers, drive productivity and innovation, and retain and attract top talent.

Capital One

Capital One's 2018 Work Environment Survey of 3,500 full-time professionals across the country—including 500 respondents in each of the following markets: Chicago, Dallas, New York City, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C.—found that talent increasingly values flexibility and design, particularly when evaluating whether to stay at their current job or considering a new employment opportunity.

"Professionals today have high expectations for their experience in the workplace and what their employer provides for them," said Stefanie Spurlin, Vice President, Workplace Solutions at Capital One. "The results of the 2018 Work Environment Survey clearly demonstrate the importance of design and flexibility to professionals across the country. By providing dynamic spaces to accommodate all kinds of work styles, companies can help facilitate the kind of collaboration and innovation that empowers employees to create breakthrough products and solutions for their customers."

Key findings for Chicago workers include:

  • Design drives innovation: For the second year in a row, 82% of Chicagoans believe companies can't encourage innovation unless their workplace environment is innovative.
  • Tech innovation: 85% of Chicago office pros believe it's important that their next employer be an early adopter of technology, consistent with the national average.
  • Flexibility is a must: 84% have their best ideas when they're working in flexible space options, up two points from 2017, and 83% say they are more productive when they change physical location while working. Additionally, more than 3 in 4 Chicagoans (79%) rank flexible schedule in their top 2 reasons to stay at a company, and 70% -- up from 65% in 2017 – want flexible hours from their employer.
  • Design elements that matter most: The most desired design elements for Chicago professionals include natural light (63%), easily reconfigurable furniture and spaces (47%, up from 43% in 2017) and artwork and creative imagery (40%).
  • Craving health & wellness: Most Chicagoans said their company doesn't currently offer mother's nursing rooms (75%) and environmentally friendly programs (74%). When asked to prioritize on-site benefits, the top three responses were healthy food and beverage options (43%, up from 40% in 2017), relaxation/social areas (33%) and health/wellness centers and programming (32%).
  • Location, location, location?: When considering a new job, 62% of Chicago office professionals believe that workplace design and environment is equally important or more important than office location.
  • Local culture is missing: 70% believe local culture isn't currently reflected in their company's workplace design, up from 67% in 2017.

Visit the Capital One newsroom for the national results and more Capital One news. To view and download images of Capital One's workspaces, please click here. For infographics of the 2018 Capital One Work Environment Survey results, please click here.

Survey Methodology
The Capital One Work Environment Survey was conducted by Wakefield Research ( among 3,500 adults, 18 and over, in the U.S., including 1,000 office professionals employed full-time in the U.S., and 500 office professionals employed full time in each of the following DMAs: Chicago, Dallas, New York City, San Francisco and Washington, D.C., between April 19 and May 2, 2018 using an email invitation and an online survey. Data from 2018 reflects the full 3,500 sample size, and year-over-year data is limited to the 2,500 respondents (total of the 500 from each market) that was the same sample set for the 2017 survey, for accuracy and data integrity.

Results of any sample are subject to sampling variation. The magnitude of the variation is measurable and is affected by the number of interviews and the level of the percentages expressing the results. For the interviews conducted in this particular study, the chances are 95 in 100 that a survey result does not vary, plus or minus, by more than 3.1 percentage points for the national sample and 4.4 percentage points for each of the DMAs from the result that would be obtained if interviews had been conducted with all persons in the universe represented by the sample. 

About Capital One
Capital One Financial Corporation ( is a financial holding company whose subsidiaries, which include Capital One, N.A., and Capital One Bank (USA), N.A., had $248.2 billion in deposits and $364.0 billion in total assets as of June 30, 2018. Headquartered in McLean, Virginia, Capital One offers a broad spectrum of financial products and services to consumers, small businesses and commercial clients through a variety of channels. Capital One, N.A. has branches located primarily in New York, Louisiana, Texas, Maryland, Virginia, New Jersey and the District of Columbia. A Fortune 500 company, Capital One trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "COF" and is included in the S&P 100 index.

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Emily Rouse, Capital One Corporate Communications, | 571.765.0618