Camp Riley training facility.

MN Impact: Researchers Develop SPOES to Determine Occupant Satisfaction

October 22, 2019

Objective

Researchers will develop B3 tools and programs that will help test and determine the impact of design in new and renovated publicly funded buildings in Minnesota. (Reported as the number of buildings using the tools).

Issue

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the average American spends 87 percent of their time indoors. How we feel about our built environments can affect overall health, mood, performance and retention.   

What has been done

Abimbola Asojo, Denise Guerin, Carin Martin and their team developed the sustainable post-occupancy evaluation survey (SPOES), a self-administered and internet-based questionnaire that provides a quantitative analysis of occupants' satisfaction. Specifically, they identified 12 indoor environmental quality (IEQ) categories that contribute to overall occupant wellbeing in Minnesota B3 buildings. The IEQ categories include overall lighting conditions, cleaning and maintenance, furnishings, technology, view conditions, privacy, function, appearance, indoor air quality, vibration and movement, acoustic quality and thermal conditions.

Results

Overall, SPOES provides a quantitative analysis of occupants' satisfaction and helps direct attention to both successful areas and areas that need improvement. By prioritizing the problem areas identified by SPOES, business owners and facility managers are empowered to make changes that enhance occupant satisfaction, health and wellbeing and reduce recruiting and training expenses.

To date, 55 SPOES reports exist for 46 buildings in Minnesota (including the new Minnesota Senate Building) and the research team has been approached by architecture firms to conduct pre- and post-occupancy evaluation for their buildings to help them better engage building occupants and bring employee health and wellbeing to the forefront of their practices.