With more people getting used to the idea of flexi/hybrid work, will the ‘office’ of the future be a rotating landscape?

In the evolving work trends amid the global pandemic, workforce culture today is increasingly championing flexible working practices as a permanent fixture, according to a report by The Executive Centre (TEC), a provider of premium flexible workspaces.

The firm’s work with Standard Chartered Bank (HK) has provided some takeaway lessons about the future of work. Organizations may appreciate the value of workplace flexibility but may also find it challenging to create an architecture to empower change towards realizing and optimizing that flexibility.

The report asserts that, for companies to successfully transition towards flexible working practices, they need to understand their business requirements and priorities first, as there is no one-size-fits-all solution. They must also interview and collaborate with their employees extensively, conduct research to make informed decisions, seek external consultations from multiple industry partners, and understand where their operations need to be geographically and how the occupants will use that space.

Physical, digital and social transformation

Accordingly, each organizations’ approach must be tailored, taking into account three transformation factors: Physical, Digital and Social.

  • Physical transformation: As people will be coming into the workplace to perform activities that they cannot do at home, office design will become one that facilitates communication, cooperation and collaboration.
  • Digital transformation: With an increasing demand to work flexibly and remotely, technology and digitalization of workflows will play a pivotal role in enabling day-to-day productivity.
  • Social transformation: As the office will become a place where employees choose to work from, greater incentives will be needed to attract people into the office.

According to Shelley Boland, Head of Property (Asia Pacific), Standard Chartered Bank: “The talent of the future are expecting flex; whether that’s flexible work hours or locations. Successful adopters of flex will be those that have the foresight to model and visualize how workplace changes may affect business outcomes, operations and employees, and be agile enough to constantly evolve their workspace to those needs. We see flexible office spaces playing a greater role in that strategy.”

Commented Paul Salnikow, Founder & CEO, TEC: “Flexible workspaces provide ready-to-use, fully furnished and serviced workspaces for the headcount that’s needed on hand. This ability to scale up or down or move locations at relatively short notice is a highly intelligent way for companies to address their workspace requirements.”