Cushman & Wakefield recently analyzed responses from more than 40,000 individuals globally in the largest known survey conducted on work-from-home experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic, providing insight into how employees are coping and what the new normal will look like as offices reopen. Survey respondents represent approximately 30 companies across nearly 20 industries.
The survey results demonstrate that, during the pandemic, productivity generally remains strong and team collaboration has reached new heights through better leverage of remote technology. Three quarters of respondents agree or strongly agree that they are collaborating effectively with colleagues in the current environment – up 10% from data gathered during the pre-COVID-19 period – and 73% of respondents would like their companies to embrace long-term or permanent flexible working policies.
“It’s imperative to recognize that the workplace will no longer be a single location, but an ecosystem of a variety of locations and experiences to support flexibility, functionality and employee wellbeing,” said Brett White, Executive Chairman & CEO of Cushman & Wakefield. “That said, we expect current real estate footprint sizes to remain steady. Flexible working practices may result in fewer people in the office at any one time, but that space-saving is offset by the need to accommodate social distancing in the office.”
Productivity can occur anywhere, not just at the office:
Pre-COVID-19, remote workers were more engaged and had a better workplace experience than office workers. During the pandemic, effective team collaboration has reached new heights, through better leverage of remote collaborative technology, and the ability to focus was upheld.
Flexibility and choice to work from anywhere is accelerating
73% of the workforce believes companies should embrace some level of working from home. Human connection and social bonding are suffering, impacting connection to corporate culture and learning younger generations are reporting more challenges working from home.
The new normal will be a Total Workplace Ecosystem
The workplace will no longer be a single location but an ecosystem of a variety of locations and experiences to support convenience, functionality and wellbeing
The purpose of the office will be to provide inspiring destinations that strengthens cultural connection, learning, bonding with customers and colleagues, and supports innovation. Current footprint sizes will remain steady, balancing social distancing’s relaxing of space density with less office space headcount demand in the new total workplace strategy.
“As we look to the future, the office will have a new purpose: to provide inspiring destinations that strengthen cultural connection, enhance learning, encourage bonding among colleagues and customers, and foster creativity and innovation,” said Despina Katsikakis, Head of Workplace Business Performance at Cushman & Wakefield.