Commercial Real Estate Conference Takeaways: State of the Workplace

Commercial Real Estate Conference Takeaways: State of the Workplace

I had the amazing opportunity to present on a panel at the Indiana Commercial Real Estate Conference, speaking to over 250 commercial real estate professionals about reimaging workspaces. This conference is one of the largest gatherings of real estate professionals in Indiana each year!

Because we know that so many organizations are navigating workspace changes and employee retention problems, our conversation was focused on the changes happening now and how organizations can respond in order to retain and attract talent. 

Here are some of the biggest takeaways from our presentation regarding the current state of the workplace:

1. 87% of executives state the office is critical

According to a recent Price Waterhouse Cooper survey, 87% of executives state the office is critical to company success. The right space can lead to improved engagement, collaboration, productivity, innovation, project and talent attraction/retention. 

It’s no surprise that the workspace is an important consideration right now, but we’re still finding that so many organizations don’t know how to optimize their space to meet the current needs of the workforce. They also want to save money because not as much square footage is needed. 

The key to identifying the needs is to survey your people and find out what they want! This can be so incredibly helpful in determining what to do next.

2. People value hybrid, privacy and enclosures

What people value in the office now has changed considerably. The trend is now hybrid workspaces that allow for collaboration spaces, workspaces with full or partial enclosures for focused work, and flexible furniture. 

Employees also want more privacy. They have privacy at home and want more of that in the workplace. However, they also want the flexibility to connect with others in the office since we’ve all been apart for so long. Social hubs within the workplace are now all the rave!

Another interesting result of the pandemic is that people at all organizations are losing assigned spaces as businesses downsize their space (10% in all organizations and 15% in large organizations with over 10,000 employees). However, it is important to offer the option to reserve workspaces when employees come in so they know where they can work for the day.  

For some tips on how to meet the needs of the current workplace, check out our hybrid workplace findings and recommendations.

3. Work is now an activity, not a fixed time and place

Employees are no longer thinking of work as a fixed time and place where they clock in, go to an office, then come home. They want their work environment to be flexible so they can live their life while also getting their work done. People are rethinking their careers, work-life balance, long-term goals and more. It’s critical to create a workplace and environment that allows for flexibility. 

How are you allowing for more flexibility while also providing employees with what they need to be successful?

4. Engagement is more important than ever

It’s no secret that employees are leaving their jobs in droves during the “Great Resignation”. If you want to attract and retain talent, it’s important that your employees like their workplace and where they work.

Studies show that people who like working from their workplace are:

  • 33% more engaged
  • 30% more connected to culture
  • 9% more productive
  • 20% less likely to leave

Is your office space optimized for employee engagement and productivity? Does it offer areas where people can focus and where they can collaborate? Have you asked your employees what they need to be successful? If your answer is no to any of these questions, then it’s time to consider reimagining your space.  

Your workplace needs to be reimagined to meet the current needs of the workforce, and we can help. Learn more about our proprietary Workplace Productivity Analysis® and how we’ve helped organizations increase engagement and productivity by 25%.

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