Limitation of office space? Employers say no

Most employers (56%) plan to maintain the current use of office space, according to a study led by Antal and Corees Polska. It’s due to the fact that employees, despite the expectations of an increased amount of remote work, still expect to have their own desk in an attractive office space (58% of responses). What are employees’ expectations towards office space (versus remote work)? What is the hub & spoke model about? What are the challenges for employers considering constantly changing job models?

Key information:

Offices won’t necessarily downscale

Contrary to popular belief, most companies don’t plan to reduce their office space. 56% of the surveyed employers plan to maintain the current use of the workspace. Some industries even plan to increase them. When analyzing the results of the study, three groups can be distinguished, consisting of various industries. The first group consists of companies planning to maintain or increase the currently occupied office space (67% – 100%), which includes the following sectors – SSC / BPO, energy, FMGC, IT, real estate, industrial production as well as transport, shipping and logistics. The vast majority of these companies focus on hybrid work, but remote work prevails in second place. On the other hand, the energy industry completely excludes remote work (56% opt for a hybrid model, and 44% choose to work from the office). The second group includes companies that plan to reduce the currently occupied office space, or those that have not yet made a long-term decision regarding the use of office space. This group includes industries such as automotive and aviation, healthcare, retail and retail, marketing and others.

These sectors mostly choose to work in a hybrid model, with the exception of the marketing industry, which abandons this model entirely in favor of remote work (67%) and, to a lesser extent, office work (33%). In turn, the automotive industry mostly decides to work from the office (60%). The last group is characterized by the lack of a dominant decision on the use of office space, and the votes regarding the decision to maintain, expand or reduce the work space are evenly divided (50%: 50%). Companies that fit this model are law firms, consulting and banking companies. Industries that are not committed to a specific scenario most often opt for a hybrid model. Remote work takes the second most favored option, and office work is the least favored one. Law firms decide to work in a hybrid model completely – emphasizes Marek Ciunowicz, CEO at Corees Poland.

 

 

 The (r)evolution of offices continues

According to the surveyed employees, the office should play the role of a meeting place (40%), as well as administrative back-up facilities (29%). With regards to the high expectations of employees – on the one hand, having own comfortable desk, on the other hand, facing large opportunities in the field of remote work – conducting internal surveys among employees in order to choose the best office organization from the perspective of a given company is highly recommended. The changing expectations of employees pose new challenges for employers. Professionals and managers declare that in order to work effectively from the office, they expect the following: locating the office in a closer neighborhood (37%), ensuring work safety (35%) or providing more workspace per desk (35%). In the same time, it is not expected that remote work will generate as large savings as assumed by the companies. 69% of the surveyed employees declare that they expect the introduction of additional amenities in such a work model, e.g. the purchase of office equipment (38%) or a permanent salary increase (35%).

Although at the moment only every third employer plans to introduce such benefits sooner or later, in order to acquire attractive talents, companies will have to at least partially meet their expectations in terms of office arrangement or additional forms of support in the field of remote work. And that will generate costs. In view of these requirements, companies should more often consider changing their organization instead of limiting office space – comments Artur Skiba, President of the Antal Management Board.

Do you want to attract employees to your office? Provide them with 30 minutes commute

When analyzing the research results presented in the report, an interesting correlation can be observed in the answers given by the employees. Employees commuting to work in less than half an hour declare a higher willingness to return to the office after the pandemic. The opposite trend is also noticeable – people who spend an hour traveling both ways less often choose to work from the office in the new reality. This situation seems to have a clear potential for improvement, as more than 70% of the respondents commute to work longer than 30 minutes round trip.

In view of the data provided, an interesting solution encouraging employees to return to the office may be organizing work within the hub & spoke model. We usually create a hub in a central, prestigious office location, which is important for the company’s image, cooperation, as well as attracting and retaining talents. On the other hand, the location of satellite offices, e.g. in smaller cities, allows, on the one hand, to save employees’ time for commuting and to attract them to less drained markets. On the other hand – to generate savings related to rental costs – notes Grzegorz Kmieciński, Director, Tenant Representation at Corees Polska – Is hub & spoke a future-oriented concept for companies? Definitely yes, although it should be remembered that it will not work in all conditions, therefore the implementation of such a model should be preceded by an appropriately selected study of the organization – he adds.

 

About the report: The report “Work model versus efficiency and employee satisfaction (MPEZ)” aims to answer these questions by summing up the experiences of several hundred employers and employees. In the report, we show which aspects of work (whether remote or in the office) are assessed as effective, which generate employee satisfaction, and which affect potential threats to the organization, such as increased turnover or inefficient internal communication.

The report can be downloaded here: https://en.antal.pl/insights/report/work-model-employee-performance-and-satisfaction

About the survey: The survey among 315 employers was conducted using the CAWI method in December 2020. The survey among 956 employees (specialists and managers) was conducted using the CAWI method in December 2020.

The report is prepared in cooperation with the commercial real estate agency Corees Polska www.corees.pl