How will employer/worker “work relationships” change in the post-Covid world of 2023? This question was highlighted by the Gensler Research Institute’s U. S. Workplace Survey 2022. The big takeaway was that employees want a space where they can get work done.
“The data illustrates that employees are looking for offices that are both effective in supporting their ability to focus on their work and offer a more desirable mix of experiences,” said Janet Pogue McLaurin, global director workplace research and principal at Gensler, in a report accompanying the survey.
Those priorities could prove very important in 2023, small and large companies are re-thinking how and where to office. Fueled by uncertain public health concerns and waning consumer confidence, companies are seeking:
- Economies of scale
Many companies and workers are finding a solution in coworking and flex office space.
Coworking Has Evolved
Once a place for young innovators who huddled around long farm tables with a laptop, coworking and flex offices have evolved into a business hub and an important economic infusion for the local business economy.
As a result of COVID-19, businesses large and small were forced to adopt remote working. Then when cities began to open following the stay-at-home stages of the pandemic, workers weren’t so willing to return to the status quo of the traditional office. This compelled many business owners and corporate executives to reimagine their workplaces by balancing the pros and cons options for a decentralized workforce.
Work from Home
- No commute
- Flexible work hours
- Fewer office-based interruptions
- No long-term lease commitment of office space expense
- Virtual, diverse talent pool
- Reduced ability to collaborate
- Potentially unsecured internet connections
- Lack of separation between work and personal time
- Decreased creativity and innovation
- Decentralized sense of team and common vision
Work from Coworking or Flex Space
- Structured, professional work environment
- Amenity-rich environment
- Easy budgeting with all-inclusive lease
- Scale space up or down as needed
- Strong, stable internet connection
- Access to meeting and conference rooms
- Up to 30% capital and/or operational cost savings
- Vendor management and ordering supplies is taken care of
- Some may dislike working among other businesses
- Shared common spaces
- Lack of privacy in open-desk areas
- Limited customization of office design and decor
Should you decide to explore shared office space, use the following checklist to help you decide which space works best for you and your employees:
- Member access: Limited or unlimited
- Security: verified member-only access; secure internet and firewall; security guard; etc.
- Resources for blended (virtual and on-site) meetings
- Conference rooms, member lounges
- Business support programs
- Other amenities
By using this list as a guide, you can compare locations to find the workspace that best meets your needs.
Lastly, and extremely important, does the vibe of the space feel right? Many companies who are trying to attract a young workforce will find that it is easier to fill positions when a space is comfortable, attractive and conducive.
Should you need any guidance in integrating back to an office environment, feel free to contact us.