Global Location Strategy Lead, JLL
Director, Tenant Representation London, JLL
Guzman de Yarza Blache
Global Head of Workplace Strategy, JLL
The world of work is changing, with employees demanding more flexibility and better office amenities.
Three specialists from real estate firm JLL reveal how the world of work is changing post-pandemic — and how companies can adapt.
Post-Covid-19, what does the working landscape look like?
Guzman de Yarza Blache: Increasingly hybrid but with different patterns globally. In Asia-Pacific, workers go to the office more frequently, but less so in Europe and particularly the US. In the UK, it differs depending on the region and company type. It’s a complex picture — but, generally, people are going to the office less than what was originally expected when companies were planning their hybrid policies.
How does an occupier decide what the ‘best’ office is?
GYB: They should adopt a people-centric approach to real estate. We always tell our customers to listen to what their people say about their office needs and wants. There’s no other way to get it right.
Dan Bayley: The ‘best office’ has been defined by collaboration within the organisation — then designed, delivered and operated properly. Critically, business management must commit to the use of that office.
Workplaces are becoming more complexGuzman de Yarza Blache
since they must compete with other
places where people can work.
What types of offices are most resilient?
DB: Service operators offering a flexible lease are attracting companies that don’t want a long-term commitment to real estate. Office location-wise, the City and West End are doing well in central London. East London, despite improved connectivity, hasn’t recovered so well — although I think it will, in time. Suburban markets and out-of-town business parks are finding the environment tougher.
How are companies adapting to hybrid working?
GYB: Corporates are demanding less — but better — space. They want a smaller footprint but are willing to pay more for a renovated building close to good public transport and with ESG and sustainability credentials. There’s been a shift in office design from the ‘me’ space to the social ‘we’ space. It must be an attractive destination with good amenities, programmes and technology. Workplaces are becoming more complex since they must compete with other places where people can work. It used to be workstations and meeting rooms. Now, it’s a whole ecosystem of environments enabled by technology.
How can companies find the right talent?
Kelly Hamer: The dynamic is changing. Companies should focus on building relationships with educational institutions (universities, schools and colleges) to continually attract the best and most diverse talent pool. They must offer flexibility. A UK&I project we carried out found that around 75% of applicants didn’t initially ask about salaries; they asked about flexibility. That’s a new reality — especially with the cost of living.