It is broadly recognized that agile and remote work are going to increase due to the pandemic. Having experienced some of the benefits of working from home (WFH) (for example, reduced commutes, increased ability to balance work and life, preferred space to execute individualized focus work, etc.), more office workers are going to expect flexibility in where they work. Recognizing this coming shift is the easy part. Understanding how portfolio and workplace strategies need to adjust and then executing on those adjustments is where the challenge exists.
In order to explore how organizations are thinking about these changes, Cushman & Wakefield partnered with CoreNet Global to survey its membership. With 339 responses from more than a dozen different countries across all three global regions—Americas, Asia Pacific and Europe—a few key themes from C-suite executives and business leaders* are apparent:
- The Purpose of the Office is Changing: The office provides employees with that which they can’t easily get with WFH. Office layouts focus more on space, technology and amenities that enhance connection, collaboration and creativity.
- Tailored Approaches Required: Different workers and teams have various needs for how they work, when they work and where they work. Space, technology, communication and corporate leadership are thoughtfully customized to seamlessly support different types of employees (i.e., personas) regardless of where they are working.
- Opportunities to Access Different Labor Pools: Increase in remote work does create opportunities for organizations to tap new employee bases. Requires an increased emphasis on connecting both in-office and remote employees to corporate culture and building interpersonal trust and rapport in new ways.
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*A fifth of respondents to the survey are C-Suite executives and 78% are in leadership positions of some type.