Trends in the workplace will be dominated by productivity, technology, and sustainability in 2023

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According to the global workspace firm IWG IWG, the world of business is close to a significant at which over half of the professionals in the world adopt a hybrid work model.

In its most recent report 2023 Trends Forecast of the future of Work, IWG says that the shift in workplace culture could occur in over the course of five years. If it happens it will mean that the percentage of professionals who work out of the same place will fall into the minority for the first time in history.

“Hybrid working is the most popular option for millions of people in which they split their working time between their company’s headquarters, local flexible workspace, and their homes,” says Mark Dixon IWG’s CEO Mark Dixon. IWG.

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This way of balancing multiple workplaces boosts productivity of companies and provides a sustainable method of working, according to Dixon. “It is apparent that more changes are on their road, as our daily lives are affected by technological advances and fresh concepts in areas like sustainability technology, recruitment, and efficiency.”

Future trends
One of the trends forecast according to IWG is a major change in mental shift in corporate thinking as businesses are more focused on the outcomes rather than counting the amount of hours that employees are working in the week. “Productivity is increasingly a key concern for businesses, especially during turbulent economy,” states IWG.

A growing trend is the work week that is four days long of which is often discussed but not always applied corporate rule.

According to IWG the coming year will see more businesses adopt the four-day-week model but with the condition that they’re confident it won’t cause an overall decrease in productivity. The surveys conducted of IWG also suggest that employees who are seeking improved flexibility in their work and a better life balance are more likely to adopt the model too.

Generation Z’s presence Gen Z workers will help to speed up this trend since they comprise 55% of Gen Z workers surveyed by IWG claim that they are expecting the work schedule of four days to become the norm over the coming years, according to the report. Gen Z refers to the generation born between the end of the 1990s and the early 2010s.

But companies shouldn’t think of this as a method to cut wages by five percent according to IWG. The workplace trials that are conducted for the four-day work week typically use a 100:80/100 ratiowhich means that you will receive 100% of the salary for the first 80% percent of time with a promise to keep 100% productivity.

Virtual workspaces
Technology will continue to influence the future of workplace trends thanks to advances with the field of virtual reality (VR) as well as the use in artificial intelligence (AI) according to IWG. The potential of virtual workspaces has led companies like Meta as well as Microsoft to introduce various work tools that can be used in VR as well as some businesses are investing in the creation of their own virtual workspaces and real properties.

This means that the notion to work anywhere in the globe is becoming an option for more and more workers.

One of the biggest companies that offer flexible workspaces across worldwide, IWG points to its 3500 locations spread across 120 countries as a way for workers on the move to join in and get work done.

“It is a good idea for people who would like to explore all over the globe, while working in the same way and with as much ease as they previously worked at home, in an office near home or in a central headquarters,” says Dixon.

The city of Singapore, IWG has 22 sites. It has put up the four flexible brands of IWG’s workspace in Singapore: Regus, Spaces, Signature by Regus and the luxurious No18. Its latest location is a 10,328 square feet Regus center in the Hiap Hoe Building in Balestier’s Zhongshan Park.

The technology is being utilized to assist employers and landlords better comprehend how spaces are used. “Companies are collecting data from multiple sources, including the productivity of employees and environmental data, such as the levels of humidity, heat, noise and power usage , to help shape the workplace of the future and minimizing the environmental impact” Dixon adds. Dixon.

‘Green leases’
The increased awareness of their impact on the environment is due to the fact that companies are putting sustainability at the forefront of their corporate strategy According to IWG. It claims there is a growing trend that property owners are investing in upgrading their buildings and facilities to include the most sustainable features. Additionally increasing numbers of corporate tenants are looking to sign “green leases” which permit both the occupier and the owner to cooperate to create buildings that are more green and less polluting to the environment.

The typical provisions of the “green lease” include issues like carbon emissions and conformity with local regulations for energy efficiency and waste reduction strategies, as well as green transport strategies.

The focus on sustainability fits to the emergence in hybrid working. On one hand businesses are reducing their real estate portfolios for corporate use and concentrate on top-quality green workspaces and buildings. However the reduction in the amount of employees who commute daily helps to create an environment that is cleaner and more sustainable.

In its report IWG draws on research from Deepki, an property ESG data intelligence company, which concluded that the most green properties within Europe benefit from increased asset value for real estate agents in commercial properties. This benefit generally is an increase of 16% or 28% rise in property value. The reason for this is the increased will of tenants to pay higher rent for an energy efficient building.

Additionally, research conducted by the global real estate consulting firm Cushman & Wakefield indicates that Leed-certified Class-A office spaces generate an increase in psf that is 25.3% compared to non-certified buildings. Leed (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is the most popular eco-friendly building certification system throughout the world. In Singapore it is it is the Green Mark certification is a similar green building system designed for buildings with the tropical climate.

Great Lease Resignation
All of these contribute to a phenomenon known as “Great Lease Resignation” A term that was coined by Dixon. It is a reference to corporate tenants refusing traditional leases for office space to go with more flexible leases.

The trend is likely to increase as leases are due to expire and businesses seek to profit from the savings that come with hybrid work. The shift to hybrid work can help in boosting retention of talent and attract more employees particularly for the emerging generation that is Gen Z workers.

However this also means that time spent at the office is more valuable according to IWG. The report states that “connecting and working together in person is an important component of the equation that is hybrid. However, it should be done in a planned manner. Simply announcing anchor days won’t make sense. Team days have to be planned and serve clearly defined goals. This is also true regarding meetings”.

Dixon states: “The most successful companies are now focusing on how meetings function. It’s no longer sufficient to set up a meeting then attempt to do it on the fly. If you want people to put in the effort to meet at the office it’s crucial that the time they spend there is productively.”

Future of Work will continue to be guided by a desire to improve the experience of employees at work by utilizing new technologies to improve efficiency and increase productivity, according to IWG. An increased awareness of well-being and sustainability is also a major factor in discussions about what the workplace of the future will look like.

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