Pump Up Tenant Interest with Amenities for Working Mothers

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Companies with lactation support programs achieved an average retention rate of 94.2% versus the national average of 59%. And considering can cost more than $150,000 to replace an experienced employee, the question is, “Why wouldn’t an employee provide a dedicated place for nursing mothers?”

Lionstone Investments recognized the potential to pack big tenant value into a compact space at The Jones on Main. In 2018, the building owner built the first ever dedicated lactation suite with start-up company Work & Mother. AMB Architects worked with property manager Midway to design the 860 s.f. space within the first floor of The Jones on Main, which is shared with 712 Main Street. The lactation suite operates similar to a fitness center; all building tenants have access to the suite, and purchase memberships for their employees currently breastfeeding or pumping.

Since opening at The Jones on Main, Work & Mother now has suites in nine other locations across the country, and four in development. AMB is now updating the original suite with new finishes and Work & Mother corporate branding. The suite occupies a fraction of the first floor and provides substantial benefits for employees, tenants and building owners.

Benefits for working mothers:
  • No more scheduling headaches: A convenient app allows for easy reservation of pumping times.
  • Fully equipped rooms: Hospital-grade pumps and supplies are readily available (mothers bring their own attachment kits).
  • Cleanliness and convenience: Built-in cleaning stations and dedicated refrigeration ensure a sanitary and efficient pumping experience.
  • Storage solutions: Lockers and an accessories kiosk provide options for storing extra supplies.
  • Comfort and privacy: Private rooms feature workstations or loungers, power outlets, and Wi-Fi for a comfortable and productive pumping session.
  • Support network: Access to lactation and health resources, networking opportunities, and educational programs through Work & Mother’s member network.
Tenant benefits of a Work & Mother lactation suite:
  • Fulfill legal obligations: Meet FLSA lactation space requirements without costly renovations.
  • Reduce turnover: Boost employee loyalty and retention by offering a supportive environment for working mothers, leading to cost savings from reduced hiring and training.
  • Attract top talent: Demonstrate a commitment to working mothers as a recruiting advantage. All tenants can leverage the Work & Mother “Mother Friendly Workplace” seal for their marketing efforts.
  • Increase productivity: Minimize stress and distractions for working mothers by providing a dedicated space for pumping, ultimately reducing sick days taken by parents for childcare needs.
  • Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) Program Initiatives: Align with ESG goals that are increasingly important to investors and employees.
  • 3 – 4 WELL Certification Credits and 4.75 Fitwel Certification Credits: Contribute to a healthier and more sustainable work environment, potentially lowering occupancy costs.
  • Save money: Building a lactation room in each tenant office with plumbing, refrigeration, and proper oversight can cost upwards of $50,000. A shared Work & Mother suite offers a cost-effective alternative.

Supporting and investing in employee well-being isn’t just ethical, it is also a good business strategy. When landlords and tenants can share in an amenity like a Work & Mother suite, both get a solid return. The supporting work environment also drastically minimizes the risk of lawsuit. Companies can expect to see their retention rates skyrocket. AMB is proud to have helped Work & Mother launch this concept. The Artemis Fund, Houston’s first female-founded and female-focused venture capital fund, selected Work & Mother to receive one of their first major investments. Women helping women, that’s a win-win.

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