Dennis Collins, AIA, CRB

Collins joins Ingrained Insights podcast

Feb 3, 2022

Dennis Collins, AIA, Architectural Group Leader and Senior Associate, joins Ingrained Insights, a Snack Food & Wholesale Bakery podcast. Collins shares insights on how food processors are improving employee experience to attract and retain employees amid the current labor shortage.

“When it comes to the work experience, you think about things like the building itself, employee amenities, support spaces, and even the company culture,” explains Collins. “It all comes into play when people are looking. Employers do have to pay attention to that. It’s a critical item.”

Collins recommends manufacturers consider shared spaces like break areas, locker rooms and outdoor spaces as an opportunity to improve the employee experience.

“Once you have the opportunity to build new or remodel, consider the environment in these spaces. Support areas don’t make money for the company, but they do contribute to the employee experience.”

Legacy facilities can present the biggest challenges when trying to create modern, inviting workspaces. Collins offers an example of a bakery that embarked on a project to install a larger, longer oven that was programmed to extend through an existing, interior locker room. With a focus on improving food safety and the employee experience, the architectural design team was able to redesign the building entrance, locker rooms and break area – all while satisfying the programming demands of the new oven.

Collins believes it is the responsibility of the company to create an environment that fosters collaborative, inclusive employee experiences.

“You have to make people feel appreciated,” concludes Collins.

Listen to the full podcast here.