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The role of property & construction in the offices of the future

Posted 5 months ago by Steve Smaylen
Opinion

The offices we have all come to know have been designed with a key element in mind. Functionality. Whether open plan or in closed spaces, teams have been gathered around each other in units designed to maximise productivity, until now.

The transition to flexible and home working has turned many business owners ideas about harnessing productivity on their head, leaving some questioning the value of the traditional office set up.

What do employees want from office spaces?

With the majority of employees favouriting a flexible hybrid approach to work, workspaces of the future are likely to be more designed around how they can be of benefit to the way employees approach work.

Our research into candidate perceptions of the future of work, found that 48.89% of employees believe future offices should be used as a space for collaboration and ideas generation. This is especially relevant for those organisations who are based in creative sectors, whose employees may have struggled throughout 2020 with a lack of inspiration.

This research also found that a large percentage of employees also believe offices should become spaces for socialisation and learning/development.

What do employees want from office spaces?

How flexible working impacts the property and construction industry

If employees continue to be a driver for change, then office spaces are likely to follow suit. This means that landlords who fail to adapt working spaces to the needs and requirements of tenants are likely to suffer hardest.

One of the biggest challenges for the property sector is the demand for smaller spaces, with 74% of UK mid-sized businesses looking to reduce their existing footspace by up to a quarter aligned with employees working more flexibly.

This leaves a lot of empty floorspace available on the market, however, aligned with employee desires for spaces which offer areas for collaboration, socialisation and development there is ample opportunity for innovation within the sector.

For this we look towards those who have succeeded in developing co-working spaces and the increasing trend for the “hotelization” of office space, whereby workspaces introduce more home comforts and spaces to unwind as a way to boost collaboration.

This is likely to boost demand in the construction industry, as landlords seek to renovate and redevelop current spaces into ones which meet the needs and demands of office tenants.

A recruitment perspective

We’re expecting property and construction businesses to want to capitalise on demand for renovating and redevelopment.

As such we’re expecting to see a boost in requirements for job seekers who hold the necessary project management and business development skills to identify opportunities and drive business growth. A push towards this may further boost demand for bid managers and marketing professionals, who are able to help elevate brand awareness and contribute towards business success.