The effects of COVID-19 on the way we work could change the office forever. In June 2020 Brunswick reviewed current thinking and opinions to predict potential alternative futures for the office.
These potential futures vary depending on the rate of post-COVID economic recovery and changing social attitudes to remote and flexible working. But in most cases, they anticipate a ‘new normal’ in which employees expect greater flexibility in their work arrangements.
In some cases, real estate cost savings are offset by increased ICT costs and compensating employees for setting up home offices. In others, increases in efficiency, flexibility and 24-hour working capacity are offset by a dilution of business culture and a more transactional relationship between employer and employee.
And there are other significant implications for efficiency, productivity, cyber security, safety, employee loyalty, engagement and more. We refer to the four potential alternative futures as ‘cost shifting’, ‘knowmads’, ‘office meet up’ and ‘return to normality’ – with the latter being the least likely.
We also set out the workplace tensions that businesses will need to understand as they plan for the future and define the specific likely outcomes for their own organization.
Whichever potential future becomes reality, businesses will need to understand the implications and be ready to adapt. Brunswick is here to help.
Read the full report.