In order to attract and retain talented workers, corporate property managers need to accommodate “flexible working,” according to Regus, a leading provider of small office workspaces with 3,000 locations in 120 countries. More than 50% of workers now work outside the main office two to three days per week or more, according to the Regus Workplace Revolution report.
Compared with previous years, Regus notes that more consultants and freelance workers, as well as older employees working beyond pensionable age, want greater freedom to work flexibly. These workers can be highly skilled and talented, but they require flexibility in terms of work environment, such as accommodating an unwillingness to commute an hour or more to a suburban office location when the work can be completed in a local office environment.
Giving staff the ability to work in flexible or activity-based workspaces, even if it’s just for part of the week, attracts talent and it can save corporations a lot of money in desk space. Although leases have become shorter and more flexible in most cities over the past 30 years, living and working costs are high in the major cities. Annual costs in London are $88,800 per employee, according to the Savills Live/Work index, and $111,900 in New York City.
Yolande Barnes, Savills World Research Director, suggests that property managers need to look at other workspaces too, including shared spaces or studios that are laid out in a way that encourages co-working or co-creation. Such spaces are better suited to new flexible work styles, fit employee lifestyle choices and meet the needs of different generations. They offer places to meet interesting groups and to collaborate more easily.