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Cushman & Wakefield Research Predicts New Normal for Workplace

Awantika Mohanty • 30/07/2020

Cushman & Wakefield (NYSE: CWK) recently analyzed responses from more than 40,000 individuals globally in the largest known survey conducted on work-from-home experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic, providing insights into how employees are coping and what the new normal will look like as offices reopen. Survey respondents represent approximately 30 companies across nearly 20 industries. 

The survey results demonstrate that, during the pandemic, productivity generally remains strong and team collaboration has reached new heights through better leverage of remote technology. Three quarters of respondents agree or strongly agree that they are collaborating effectively with colleagues in the current environment – up 10% from data gathered during the pre-COVID-19 period – and 73% of respondents would like their companies to embrace long-term or permanent flexible working policies.

Overall, India scored well – with a total experience score that was 4% above the global average.  For the most part, India was above the global average on almost every measure that was surveyed. In particular we saw high scores on many of the questions attached to culture. From the above 68% felt they had maintained connection to company culture – 18 percentage points above the global average. There was also strong work appeal and feeling of fulfilment. An area where India’s score was below global benchmark was in access to outdoor space, likely tied to higher density of the city and probably the extent of lockdowns in India.

Remote working may be here to stay, but survey results also show human connection and social bonding are suffering, thus negatively impacting corporate culture and learning. Only a little more than half of respondents feel personally connected to their colleagues in the work-from-home environment. Which implies that the balance half are feeling disconnected and lost.

The office isn’t going anywhere, but a key role of the office has become clearer – that as a place to establish and maintain those human connections, which flows through to learning opportunities and strengthens attachment to culture.

Anshul Jain, MD – India & SE Asia, added, “As results show India during the lockdown coped very well with the shift in workplace, and has continued to do so with limited re-opening. We do believe that going forward workplace will no longer be a single location, but an ecosystem driven by locations and experiences to support convenience, functionality and wellbeing. In India we had seen a steady densification of offices over the last few years. Hence, we expect the current footprint sizes to remain steady, balancing the social distancing requirement leading to dedensification and off setting the requirement for less office space on account of an increase in work-place related flexibility.”

Cushman & Wakefield has adopted a data-driven, evidenced-based approach to understanding key drivers of workplace experience through its Experience per Square Foot™ (XSF) database, a proprietary tool that tracks real estate and workplace metrics. The firm has analyzed over 2.5 million data points related to workplace experience pre-COVID-19, and an additional 1.7 million data points in the current work-from-home environment.

Visit The Future of Workplace to download the report.  


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