When you return to the office, you want to be able to make it a smooth transition for the company.
Most companies around the world face a vast number of challenges when it comes to creating/implementing return-to-work strategies. The first and foremost step is to ensure the well-being, health, and safety of employees. It requires a rethinking of the physical workspace, and the development of staggered schedules to ensure social distancing. Most of the companies let their leases expire during the worldwide pandemic. As a result, they were left with the daunting task of beginning from scratch to prepare new offices. It required an investment of time, money, and human resources.
At a similar time, firms that considered hybrid workspaces had to decide what the new mode of working will look like for them. Most such companies had to consider the needs of the business, employees, and teams, alongside the minimum physical space required and the location. A lot of companies are looking to minimize their real estate portfolio while at the same time, others are considering office expansion.
With all these variables and considerations, returning to the office is a troublesome task for even the most experienced real estate buyers. Moreover, the return-to-office strategy looks very different on paper as compared to real life. A lot of the people are cautious of signing up new leases as the place can end up too big or small.
How Different Companies Implemented Their Return-to-Work Strategies?
In this part of the article, we will help demonstrate with an example how different companies tackled returning to the office. These will definitely help you out:
Case 1: Employees of a Large Retailer Can Work Closer to their Homes
Prior to the pandemic hitting us all with full force, a large retailer in Seattle moved out of the suburban headquarters. The company planned its return to office in the spring of 2021. Hence, they were looking for a hybrid solution that enabled their local employees to choose their placement of work.
The company decided on returning to the office in June 2021. They got a location analysis and choose the location that was the most convenient for their employees. They also got All Access passes for the employees which gave them access to the on-demand workspace.
The company created a dedicated space to fit 130 desks that were enough for all of the employees. They helped to de-densify the space by enabling employees to work from a location that was closer to their homes. Moreover, a flexible, one-year lease gave the company a chance to reevaluate its needs as per the usage data collected and offer adjustments as needed.
Case 2: A Logistics Company Required a Newer, Better, and Socially Distanced Workspace
A logistics company was planning to revamp the Miami headquarters before returning to work. They realized that their existing space wasn’t suited to social distancing or growth projects. The company required a new workspace quickly. However, they were worried about potential future headcounts.
Eventually, the company decided on getting a 28,000 square feet large, configurable space in the heart of the financial district, of Miami. The space was suited for over 500 employees with socially distanced desk spaces and ease of transition to the office space. The company distributed around 50 access passes so employees could work remotely as well. In order to cover the expansion, the company anticipated a 36-month lease agreement that involved expansion rights of three additional floors in the same building and ROFO on the close by asset space.
The new offices were designed keeping in mind the health and safety of employees. All the employees were super thrilled to return back to their offices and loved their revamped space in modern towers with upgraded interiors, collaborative spaces, artwork, and super energetic vibes.
Case 3: A Tech Company Sought Flexible Office Solutions
As the pandemic hit in the early 2020s, the global tech firm divested its portfolio. The employees began working from home and the company began to plan for the future workspace. As expected, a flexible workspace was on top of the list of possible solutions. They worked with a real estate partner to get the most suitable space across multiple markets.
The company eventually settled on a hybrid workspace solution that was built on the utilization of data. Around 100 access passes were distributed to employees which gave them the flexibility to work remotely. Moreover, the space was enough to accommodate over 200 desks. Accompanied by short-term leases, the company loved shifting the new space. All in all, their return to the office was super smooth and effective. The decision of working on usage data along with a combo of real estate strategy minimizes the expenditure while saving time. The employees had the flexibility to work from anywhere around the world. Moreover, the space was enough to prioritize the health of the employees as it was made keeping the requirement of social distancing in mind.
Case 4: An Enterprise Needed De-densification of Its Office
An enterprise wished to de-densify the workspace as a part of its return to office strategy. The goal was to promote the health and safety of employees via social distancing. As a solution, the company refigured its existing workspace. They accomplished their goal of de-densification by minimizing the number of desks to almost half, and addition of additional office space to cover the other half. They opted for a highly flexible month-to-month lease that allowed them to reassess their needs at the current time and make adjustments accordingly.
The company returned to the office in spring 2021. With the help of flexible schedules and extra working space, the enterprise was able to achieve a socially distanced workspace without affecting the efficacy of employees and overall work output.
Return to the Office Conclusion
When it comes to returning back to the office, each business has its own set of challenges. Hence, they call for a unique solution that is suited to their specific needs and requirements. With a bit of thinking beforehand, and partnering with the right people, you can make the transition smooth for your employees while increasing your productivity and efficacy as a company.