COVID-19 has dramatically changed our working habits, leveraging this change is an opportunity to transform the workspace & repurpose real estate needs that can create a huge benefit to the balance sheet. Rarely has such an opportunity presented itself. Holistica is an industry expert on space management.
As the COVID-19 lockdown started, companies leveraged their continuity plans to ensure that business activities would continue through remote working as their office spaces were shutdown.
In many cases, COVID-19 validated full loads & volumes on the remote working IT structures as staff rapidly took up the use of videoconferencing as well as the normal office & business application with relative success from the homes.
From staff climate surveys recently conducted; after the initial transition to remote working, many staff now enjoy the flexibility that this brings, the lack of morning commute, more free time if managed well, management quickly adapted to their team members available virtually rather than physically.
With the office spaces empty, meetings taking place online, an increase in webinars & marketing events, even doctors are undertaking tele-medics, what exactly is the future for the traditional office location. Then, considering that all premises transactions are long-term commitments, often office leases are for 5, 10, 15, 20 & 25 years in some cases there are costly early exit fee’s, all of these costs start to look liabilities rather than assets on the balance sheet, the obvious question is what does the post-COVID-19 smart office look like?
The pandemic crisis is likely to be followed by an economic crisis which will be likely driven through lower volumes & margins, likely to see credit risk as a threat as a business come under increased liquidity pressure, resulting in downgrades, greater default rates & further pressure on profitability, all this will inevitably lead to more stringent cost management.
Companies will need to carefully assess their effective real estate requirements, much of the desk space can be radically downsized in favour of remote working as can much of the fixed offices for management. Thereafter meeting spaces can be repurposed simply into three categories, informal, semi-formal & formal usage.
Where informal spaces are representative of coffee shops or “Starbucks” model:
Tables & chairs for any ad-hoc collaboration up to groups of 6.
Armchairs for smaller intermit gatherings.
Touch-down tables with stools to progress emails, minutes, etc
Where semi-formal spaces are for internal meetings where remote participants can join through teleconferencing.
Formed for groups of 6, 8 & 10 with large screens for content sharing.
Or collaboration boards are used for efficient stand-up style meetings.
Tapered tables, chairs or stools depending upon space requirements.
And where formal spaces are used for client & supplier type negotiations or as a forum for formal steering committees.
Holistica is an industry expert on space management and has an assessment tool to benchmark remote working progress which can be leveraged through a brief interaction, furthermore with Holistica’s project experiences it is possible to draw-up plans inclusive of IT, change management & HR quickly & deploy the relevant metrics to accelerate your remote working ambitions.