Top companies & governments review remote working policies

September 29, 2021

Jade Tinsley

The global pandemic probably hasn't escaped your attention. What you may not be aware of however, is changes to the way we work as top companies & governments review remote working policies. In this article we take a look at the changes afoot and the rise of coworking.

COVID-19 & remote working

As restrictions were placed on people gathering inside, outside their households, work as we know it shifted. In the UK for example, an estimated 70% of the workforce were office-based prior to the pandemic. Yet, office work was put on hold as companies small and large were forced into what had previously largely been a bragging right of start-ups and millennial-age companies: enabling their troops to work from home.

The sheer effort and logistics for larger corporations especially, and for those industries with many more obstacles to isolated, off-site work had put a blocker on this evolution. Having been pushed over this hurdle however, many are now realising the benefits of remote-working - in both financial and employee welfare terms.

Top companies & governments review remote working policies

In fact, many large-scale businesses have announced their intention to continue with this arrangement, including Twitter and Spotify, who reported that creative thinking was enhanced by the move. You can explore more of the top companies pushing forward with flexible working here.

Spotify Will Let Employees Work From Anywhere They Do Their Best ‘Thinking And Creating’
Starting this summer, Spotify will introduce “My Work Mode,” which offers flexible work options. The podcast and music streaming company said it is reevaluating its office spaces around the world for “increased sustainability, flexibility and well-being.”
30 Companies Switching to Long-Term Remote Work | FlexJobs
The pandemic forced many businesses to go remote, but here are 30 companies that have switched to permanent remote work.

The positive impacts, particularly for staff, have been felt widely enough that governments, including in the UK, have launched commissions to explore work policies to better support employees and companies who wish to pursue this route.

Furthermore, the US government have themselves been awarding contracts to coworking spaces and brokers such as WeWork, EXPANSIVE, The Yard, DeskPass and Liquid Space. This move really helps to cement coworking as a credible workspace solution, and will likely also accelerate its familiarity at a broader level.

WeWork Awarded $10M Federal Government Contract
In a sign that demand for flexible office space is heating up, the coworking firm’s contract with the government is for one year, with an option to renew for another four.

The rise of Coworking Spaces

Of course, as restrictions relax, and fewer employees rush back to their commuter train and coworkers, 2 things are becoming apparent:

  • A void is being left in commercial spaces
  • The demand for on-demand office space is increasing

One of the obvious benefits for companies is the reduced spend on office space. This shrinking of occupancy will undoubtedly result in the repurposing of space. One solution to this problem is flexible workspaces.

Whilst many sectors require or prefer at least some of their personnel being on site (surgeons or indeed those commuter train drivers would be considerably less useful working remotely), many employees are also understanding their own preferences.

Some people thrive in a social environment, and leaving their houses, and so seek the sense of working community that a coworking space can provide. Flexible workspaces will also be key for those without the space to work at home. In addition there are of course meeting spaces; just in case a few of us feel the need for some face to face to break up those zooms. These 'offices' can provide hot desks, fixed personal desks or private offices, often with subscriptions and associated perks to suit.

Indeed, in the turmoil of the last 6 months, there has been an increase in coworking spaces worldwide.

Top companies & governments review remote working policies: coworking supply is growing

Oceania (19% increase) and Europe (16% increase) in particular have seen large escalations, while North America is the only region to see a drop.

As more employers and employees discover the benefits and opportunities that come from remote-working, this sector only look set to grow further.

For landlords, brokers, operators or investors, granular data on coworking performance is just a few clicks away: