This article was originally published in October 2020.
The sector must adapt if it is to survive, but what kind of changes can we expect?
There has been much speculation that we are facing the end of the office. With remote working now the default across many industries, the future of traditional workplaces is uncertain. It is unlikely that we will see a complete return to our old ways of working in the near future. Indeed, it does not seem to be desired by a large proportion of the workforce. Recent surveys have shown that Brits are more reluctant than our European counterparts to return to the office full-time, having grown accustomed to working remotely. However, we are all human beings and need direct contact – you will not get tht from endless Zoom and Teams calls.
In the short to medium term at least, social distancing measures make it difficult for many employers to bring their whole workforce back at once. Businesses will instead rotate their staff and expect workers to spend two to three days in the office and the rest of the working week at home. How long this model lasts will depend largely on how quickly a vaccine is developed. Nevertheless, office providers have already started adapting their spaces to the requirements of infection control.