The office has served a distinct function since its inception: to bring together people, promote collaboration, and drive productivity. But as the environment continues to change and the population continues to disperse, we need to figure out the future of employment and, more importantly, the workplace.
In 2020, in the midst of the worst global pandemic in over a century, flexibility has become a required element for many businesses to thrive. Some studies and surveys increasingly indicate that top hires align themselves with flexible workplace trends and relate it to employee engagement and productivity.
For many enterprises, 2020 has really tested the boundaries of versatility. With at-home childcare, workers who are parents had to juggle jobs. Others had to find time to care for family members who were ill. Some have to relocate to a more distant area from an urban center, moving them further away from the workplace or headquarters.
Flexible Workplace Trends
COVID-19 has changed the way we think about workplaces. Workplaces never will be what they used to be. Work from home ( WFH ) has freed individuals from conventional concepts of associating greater productivity with office work, creation of the ideal corporate culture, and the overall growth of any company.
Several corporations, including technology companies Facebook and Twitter, have already given their workers the ability to permanently access work from home.
Although work from home has increased productivity for many, it has also led to a disparity in work-life schedules. In certain cases, workers have reported adverse effects on mental health. This has led businesses to reimagine traditional cultures, while keeping a balance, for seamless transition of work from the workplace to work from home.
2021 will bring with the transformation of workplace needs with impactful growth of flexible work spaces and decentralized offices in terms of co-working spaces.
What Drives The Growth Of Flexible Office Spaces?
As businesses continue to require workers to operate from the workplace while maintaining levels of social distancing, demand in the co-working space sector is likely to increase.
1. Collaborative Environment
The workplace will still be important to our professional pursuits. Collaboration and creativity rely on trust that is primarily driven by in-person experiences. While organizations are currently rethinking the basic “purpose of location,” the bottom line is that the office is not going anywhere soon at any time. Getting together in person to discuss, brainstorm, and problem-solve will remain a strong part of the workplace. The latest flexible workplace trends highlight co-working spaces as the perfect fit to changing demand of workplaces.
2. Line-of-Sight Management
Line-of-sight management (LOS management) is an organizational approach that provides a clear correlation between the high-level objectives of an organization and the day-to-day activities of an employee. And while the office has been a space that favors LOS management for a long time, the pandemic has shown that this style is not always realistic, nor is it necessary for success.
Instead of associating accomplishment with time spent in an office, this suggests a change to outcome-based systems that depend on collaboration and trust. Co-working space is a practice that can and should be repeated by all organizations to concentrate on performance rather than time spent.
3. Growth without Restrictions
There’s been a major step towards remote work since the issue of stay-at-home orders in March. To work from a more accessible places and/or closer to their friends and family, workers take advantage of their newfound versatility. The workforce will begin to disperse in 2021, and this spontaneous side effect is going to become the norm.
From a hiring point of view, this suggests attracting talent without location restrictions. Hiring managers will cast a broader net and draw workers from a wider pool of talent. Companies will also aim to divest their holdings of real estate and rightsize to a footprint that suits dispersed teams better. Progressive businesses can divert these daunting costs and invest in services and experiences for workers. For example, in a variety of markets, one might re appropriate funds for their HQ or satellite offices to provide flexible spaces.
The concentration would then shift to the factors that come with a dispersed workforce. To ensure satisfaction across long-distance teams, continuity in technology and facilities will also be important.
4. Innovation at its best
Those that are willing to commit to creativity, when faced with a challenge, are the ones who will prevail. It has proved no different this year. The businesses that have been able to maintain talent and income are the businesses that have adopted a fast and innovative response to the 2020 fallout.
As we have seen time and time again, however, sluggish action is not sufficient to keep up with today’s society’s rapid pace. For success, companies that can adapt rapidly are best placed. And finally, versatility in terms of office space is a selling point that will win the talent fight.
5. Digital Innovations
Although adopting technology right now seems like the obvious option, each company in its own time will arrive at that juncture. Unfortunately, others are related to current obligations, tied into the next decade by lease and seller contracts. Where this is not the case, however, digital now and physical later should be the priority. The implementation of this directive would allow companies to focus on opportunities for short-term sales and to engage their dispersed workforce. It will also provide a runway for companies to develop long-term partnerships and meaningful goods that meet potential demands.
Benefits of Flexible Workplaces Over Fixed Offices
Check out the various benefits of co-working space as flexible workplace trends:
1. Safer work environments
Safety in the workplace is not just a concern for production and warehouse departments. Employers must have policies and procedures in place to ensure those office workers are still safe. It is all necessary to record and communicate cleaning practices, temperature controls, health surveys, and sick time policies to the individuals in your company.
This can be easily maintained in co-working spaces as they have got centralized maintenance process in place.
2. Schedule flexibility
Co-working spaces helps to maintain and schedule flexibility. In today’s working environment flexibility was perceived as an advantage. It has become a must to attract and retain talent. Offering this versatility can also help businesses. Providing flexible timetables can lead to enhanced morale and efficiency while reducing stress as well.
3. Virtual company culture
Firms need to find a way to maintain their corporate culture in a virtual environment. Make it a priority to devote time to create a strategy that ensures that employee engagement remains high. You can also stick to the standard employee engagement activities in a flexible working place.
4. Mental Health And Wellness Benefits
Post covid-19, there is an additional focus on benefits and well-being initiatives for employees. Employees will continue to specifically compare their current benefits to the benefits offered to prospective employers, especially when it comes to mental health and well-being. Co-working spaces helps you to provide flexible hours resulting in maintenance of mental health and wellness benefits. In maintaining your skilled employees, these may act as significant differentiators.
5. Additional Cybersecurity
An increased need for the mitigation of cyber risk needs to be present in modern working spaces. Cyber thieves and Ransomware attacks on businesses pose a serious threat. Such risks need businesses to devote time and money for cybersecurity. Co-working spaces ensure that people who working away from office have the right tools and IT support.
The Rise Of Co-working As Flexible Workplace Trends
None of this is to suggest that it’ll be easy to have versatility. Policies have to shift, managers need to give up some power, and workers have to learn to work together. The workers also need to be effective through asynchronous schedules and separate physical spaces.
At the same time, co-working spaces will grow, becoming hubs for connection between individuals, and with technology and spaces can accommodate a wide variety of work styles. If we predict future changes in the workplace, then 2021 will require the workplace to adapt and evolve. The value of providing a versatile workspace has been signified by the post-COVID wave.
The dynamism of flexible workplaces trends has been recognized by both start-ups and large companies. Co-working spaces offers extremely flexible working spaces that organizations can easily change or downsize. The plug-and-play feature of co-working spaces enables participants to work at their own speed. Co-working space envision a practical as well as strategic future workplace, exploiting new efficiencies to maximize growth opportunities.
Liked this article? Read more: