While the Covid pandemic has accelerated the evolving role of the workplace, the change in how, where and why we work has been in place for many years.
Progressive organisations have increasingly committed to meaningful sustainability, improved employee wellbeing, embraced new technologies and supported greater collaboration, which in turn has significantly influenced the structure and design of modern office buildings and workplaces. This trend continues to build momentum and is increasingly important as every year passes.
Working-from-home was initially a mandated requirement, yet it soon became the preferred flexible choice for many people and businesses, with the perceived benefits of increased productivity from time saved commuting, initially outweighing the impact to organisational culture and serendipitous opportunities for knowledge sharing, relationship building and collaboration. It wasn’t long before this new way of working questioned the role of a commercial workspace.
In response, many progressive organisations are now redefining their workplace design, ways-of-working, and adopting new paradigms of flexibility. This is providing people unprecedented levels of autonomy and opportunities to improve their work-life balance. A key role of the modern workplace is therefore facilitating a company’s purpose, function, and aspiration – which reinforces the critical value workplaces play in creating wholistic enterprise value – from business performance to individual wellbeing. The office remains as important as ever, however as life evolves, the workplace must adapt.
The office is continuing to evolve to accommodate this new shift, with some assets far better structured than others to allow organisations and people to prosper in this new environment. Progressive workplaces are countering the convenience of working from home with benefits that easily justify the city commute; high quality spaces to collaborate, engage and socialise with teams; egalitarian access to facilities; third spaces that enable greater flexibility in where and how various tasks are performed; convenient access to transport and services; and diverse opportunities for career progression, learning and social interaction – essential fundamentals for a prosperous career.
As a result, we’re seeing a flight to quality buildings that support the modern day needs of people and businesses. Quality office buildings that support the highest ESG standards will better sustain the wellness of their workers and broader community, and with the war for talent never being more competitive, high-quality workplaces are a key ingredient for attracting the best of the best.
The role of the office has never been more important – an enriched environment where people can interact and create real value for their organisations, their career, their wellbeing, and the broader community.