A new report published by workplace design consultancy, Peldon Rose, throws a light on the changing needs of office users as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. “The Office of the Future” report, commissioned in conjunction with workplace strategy and employee engagement specialists, WKspace, examines the impact on the pandemic has had on the changing needs of tenants.
52% want a more flexible approach with a mixture of home and office working
Covid-19 has changed the working habits for the majority of people in the UK, with lockdown restrictions forcing office-goers to set up temporary workspaces in their homes, concludes the report. Yet, despite continued declarations of a ‘work from home revolution’, the findings suggest that even with the growing trend towards agile working, and new government guidelines advising people to work from home when possible, the physical office is here to stay in the long-term, which suggests the need for landlord operated spaces isn’t going away.
What we want
What’s clear from the data is that tenants will be expecting certain new measures within a workplace that promote social distancing and ensure employees feel safe and comfortable in the working environment. In fact, our data reveals that only 6% of respondents would choose hotdesking in the workplace, which suggests this once popular collaborative working style is now going out of favour. This move away from close co-working is further supported by almost half (48%) of respondents who stated they now want a private office/co-working space with a quieter section away from noise and distraction.
As well as changes to the physical environment itself, there may also be changes to the way people rent spaces. Peldon Rose’s data revealed that 52% of respondents want a mixture of home and office working, this could mean that long term leases are a thing of the past and we’ll see the growing popularity of shorter-term leases.
From a productivity perspective, the data revealed that 48% of business leaders admitted that employee motivation has proved to be the greatest challenge, while 33% have said that productivity has been adversely impacted within their workforce. Interestingly, 89% of respondents reported that it is important to learn from colleagues they work alongside for their own job satisfaction as well as for overall business productivity.
The statistics show that 94% no longer want to hotdesk in the workplace
Jitesh Patel, CEO, Peldon Rose, said: “We’ve always understood the importance of creating agile working environments for clients and we understand the office is so much more than just providing people with a computer and a desk. In many ways, the pandemic is accelerating the process of making businesses think more creatively about the spaces they work from, and that’s the future.”
It’s also no secret that lockdown has had a huge impact on wellbeing, particularly due to decreased human interaction and for many, working from home has only reduced their human contact further. In fact, a quarter of respondents (25%) said that their wellbeing has been negatively impacted as a result of working from home. The report’s authors conclude that more than ever businesses will want their offices to support the needs of their teams.
Kevin Wither, Head of Landlord, Peldon Rose, said: “With businesses wanting to take more control over the spaces they occupy, in many ways we’re seeing a complete shift from the socially-driven workplaces that were popular just a few months ago. If landlords want to ensure their locations remain occupied and attractive to tenants, it’s important that these new ways of thinking are applied to their buildings, putting the time and effort into the design of a space to meet all of the needs of users will ultimately be recognised by tenants, and help to provide an improved ROI.”
The full report from Peldon Rose and findings can be found here.
The data was collected by independent specialists WKspace, and used a dataset of 500 people based across the UK.
Quick summary of notable findings from the survey
- 84% of business leaders say a physical workplace contributes to instilling vision and purpose to employees
- 66% believe a positive and shared vision, purpose and culture is important when deciding to work for or continuing to work for a company
- 48% of business leaders say that employee motivation has proved the biggest challenge in lockdown
- 65% said productivity between April-June 2020 was lower or the same when compared to April – June 2019
- 62% of respondents reported that business performance in April-June 2020 was lower or the same than the same period in 2019
- Although 47% of people believe their wellbeing has not been impacted in any way, we don’t yet know the long-term mental health implications of lockdown. Furthermore, 25% of respondents believe their wellbeing has been negatively impacted by working from home
For more content on what tenants want from their workspace, click here.
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