If you are interested or work in the 'workplace sector', you have probably heard of Leesman. If not, Leesman is a global workplace experience survey organisation that provides unrivalled data on how workplaces are changing, what people value and what organisations are doing right now.
At Amicus, we take this data and insights to provoke organisations to think about what is important to their people and workplace strategy when making real estate and office design decisions. Here are 5 key takeaways we have drawn from the latest data (June 2022).
1. It is still a home vs office battle
This key data point tells us that beyond the personal and time-saving benefits of working from home, our home offices and desks are spaces that support productivity better than most office environments. It is an inditement on our offices that can only be rectified through re-imagining our workspaces.
2. Most companies are making changes
Over 90% of organisations have chosen to use a hybrid working model that includes the office, homes and (for some) a third space (eg. co-working space)
93% of organisations are planning for minor or major changes to the workplace post-COVID
Over 60% of organisations will be reducing their real estate footprint over the next 18 months, the majority by less than 25%
Even with the assumption that the organisations engaging in the Leesman Surveys are driven by providing a good employee experience, this is an overwhelming indication that hybrid work has a broad adoption and workplaces are changing (and shrinking) at an unprecedented speed
It is clear that the desk farms, large executive offices and small kitchens are quickly disappearing from our shared places of work. Offices that provide collaborative spaces, exciting areas to socialise with booths and rooms for privacy and focus are what people are now hankering for.
3. There are some early trends to keep an eye on.
There are some minor, yet interesting shifts in what real estate professionals are expecting in 2022 in comparison to 2021:
A slight increase in organisations that will maintain or grow their property footprint compared with last year (from 20 to 26%). This could be a reflection of certain industries but it does suggest a wariness about dramatically reducing office space, particularly when signing up for new leases.
A decreased appetite for hybrid models which includes 'third spaces' such as flex or co-working space (from 28 - 25%). The interpretation here is that these additional local spaces may not deliver the quality of workplace experience that a central branded office can be designed to create.
4. There is a conundrum for Gen Y
The Leesman research reveals that the largest proportion of age groups working solely from home are those under 25 years, accounting for 43% of all employees. This proportion of people working solely from home reduces as people get older and have more time with an organisation.
While this may indicate a mix of seniority and preference, it raises a concern that those employees most in need of development and learning opportunities are potentially the least visible and connected. Whilst this is a yet-to-be-proven problem, it certainly is a cohort that we should remain aware of, and ensure they do not miss out on the upsides of in-person connection.
5. Each organisation has its own story!
One final point that we are all well aware of is that despite the value we gain from learning about current trends, ultimately each organisation is unique and needs to set its own way forward. This graph above demonstrates that on a case-by-case basis organisations significantly vary in the sorts of activities and associated spaces that are important to them. There is no one size fits all model or workspace. We all need to chart our own course.
At Amicus we can get you moving in the right direction. We can take the insights, provoke the right discussions and recommend a path forward that aligns with your organisational strategy, your culture and your future workspace needs.
Interested in learning more about how our Workplace Strategy team can help? Visit our hybrid working dedicated website page or click here to book a chat with one of our experienced strategists. You can also check out Leesman's latest webinar here.