Editor: It is promising to see an accelerating ‘return to the office’ drive increasing confidence in the commercial real estate sector. With economic recovery leading to a surge in job vacancies, there is an air of optimism around the London business ecosystem that has not been felt for some time.
At the heart of this positivity is the conviction that having high-spec office space is the key to unlocking better business performance. It offers a stark contrast to full-time homeworking during lockdown, when businesses and employees struggled with inadequate tech, insufficient space and a sense of isolation.
As businesses lay the foundations for growth and recovery post pandemic, the office has a crucial role to play. High-spec, high-tech space provides a superior alternative to lone laptop-based communication.
Moreover, businesses are being rewarded for responding to their employees’ wishes about the return to the workplace. Many continue to invest in Covid-compliant safety measures that have assuaged workers’ anxieties and augmented confidence in an office return.
In many cases, it is the prospect of human connection that has driven employees back to the office. More than 40% of respondents in Office Space in Town’s latest survey cited difficulty communicating with colleagues as the biggest downside to working from home, ahead of issues such as struggling to switch off from work (39%).
Young workers in particular have been happy to return to the in-person teamwork and mentoring opportunities so crucial for career development. If we can sustain this confidence in our office buildings, we may have even more benefits to look forward to.
Giles Fuchs, chief executive, Office Space in Town
WorkSpace, featuring AV Works, takes place 1 October 2021 in London. Property Week and AV Magazine will once again be partnering to bring you game-changing content that will open your eyes to the shifts happening across workspaces.