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Japan And Australia Are The Most Expensive Office Fit-out Markets In Asia Pacific

Geraldine Cheong • 30/09/2019
Tokyo takes top spot with an average cost of USD202 per square foot
The evolution of workplace designs gains momentum to cater to growing focus on employee engagement


Cities in Japan and Australia dominate the list of most expensive office fit-out locations in Asia Pacific, according to Cushman & Wakefield’s Asia Pacific Office Fit-out Guide, which provides an indication of the office fit-out construction costs across 28 key gateway cities in the region. The guide, which serves to assist occupiers in defining their capital planning and relocation budgets, includes a comprehensive fit-out cost section covering furniture, mechanical & electrical works, builder works, AV/IT and other miscellaneous costs and takes into consideration the reinstatement cost in Asia Pacific.
The top ten cities in Asia Pacific with the highest office fit-out costs are:

 NO.  CITY  AVERAGE(USD PSF)
   Tokyo 202

 2

 Osaka 194
 3  Nagoya 190
 4  Sydney 154
 5  Auckland 140
 6  Brisbane 134
 7  Hong Kong 130
 8  Perth 123
 9  Melbourne 122 
 10  Beijing 118

Source: Cushman & Wakefield

Tom Gibson, Managing Director, Project & Development Services, Asia Pacific said, “Tokyo’s position as the most expensive office fit-out market in Asia Pacific is a reflection of the unique construction requirement in this market. The practice of working with building-appointed general contractors and the pursuit of high-quality finishes contribute to the high fit-out and reinstatement cost.”

“We anticipate the gap between high and low office fit-out cost cities to narrow in the future as Vietnam and India will be looking to further improve the quality of their office space including having better technology, end-of-trip amenities and higher quality furniture, fixtures and equipment. This will drive up the total office fit out costs in these markets, which are already facing rising labor and material costs.”

Multi-faceted workplace designs to drive better employee experience and engagement

The change in design and layout of work spaces has also become more prevalent today than ever before. In recent years, companies have shifted their focus from just looking at cost reduction and workplace efficiencies to factors that contribute to enhanced employee experience and engagement. They are more willing to offer a range of different facilities in their new offices to create an interactive work environment, which then drive up the fit-out cost, but will help boost productivity and allow them to win the war for talent.

Mr. Gibson said, “The move to greater adoption of co-working, flexible workplaces and provision of a variety of agile workplace solutions has resulted in workplace design becoming more multi-faceted. Today’s workspace needs to support various workstyles from focused work to group collaboration and engagement and this means that companies need to have a deeper understanding and wider exposure to the latest workplace design strategies.”

“The ability to provide a high quality of life at work has also become an important consideration as companies build their competitive edge in today’s war for talent. Comfort, safety, accessibility, tech-enabled surfaces and sustainable materials will be even more pervasive in workplace designs across all markets. Whether you are looking to fit-out in Japan or Vietnam, these considerations are a big influence on capital expenditure decisions,” he added.

A workplace environment that is functional, tech-enabled and flexible with a variety of work settings and amenities are the benchmark considerations today. The tech-savvy generation expects a high level of technology adoption in the workplace, which enables them to access information easily and quickly in a conducive and comfortable environment. According to Cushman & Wakefield’s Asia Pacific Office Fit-out Cost Guide for 2019/2020, the AV/IT and furniture component is currently about 30% of the total fit-out costs.

“The integration of technology with furniture has a significant impact on total office fit-out costs. Large AV set-ups, real time data on display with the latest tech amenities at fast speeds mean higher costs related to high performance and cooling facilities to maintain comfort levels. Sustainability factors such as the type of materials used in the fit-out will also have a direct impact on costs,” noted Mr. Gibson.

The report is available to download.

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