Industry experts JLL have reported a significant increase in office refurbishment requests in the past year.
According to the industry body, landlords are making plans to improve office spaces in order to encourage tenants back to office buildings, after spending much of the past year remotely working from home, as a result of the global COVID-19 pandemic.
The report from JLL said, “everything from traditionally-leased office floors to lobbies and end-of-trip facilities are being looked at, triggered by the shift to a hybrid work model.”
CHANGING OFFICE EXPECTATIONS AS A RESULT OF COVID-19
The study focused on 2,000 office workers across 10 countries. According to those interviewed as part of the study, the majority of workers want to work two days remotely on average. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, this number was just one day per week.
“There is a shopping list of capital expenditure strategies that landlords can and will get underway in their buildings as a proactive defensive strategy in the current climate. Tenants now want fewer people at workstations and would rather prioritize spaces that enhance teamwork, collaboration, and innovation. Employees also expect the experience of the office to be worth commuting for, with food, social spaces, health and wellbeing amenities, smart technology, clean air and the highest hygiene practices,” said James Peterson, head of asset and digital development, Australia for JLL, one of the countries which took part in the survey.
DRIVING VALUE IN A COMPETITIVE FIELD
Australia is not alone in this new development, according to JLL data approximately 40 percent of offices that are currently over 10 years old require some form of enhancement or refurbishment in order to remain competitive in the current market. “There are many buildings that are well located with efficient floor plates and strong structural bones but have mounting stress inside them such as looming lease expires. This can be mitigated with clever strategies,” Peterson added.
The trends from the past 12 months and the experiences learnt from remote working are only likely to increase in terms of their influence on our workspaces, Anthony Couse, Asia Pacific chief executive for JLL added. “The new year may not shake off all the challenges of a pandemic-hit economy, but with recovery in many markets and new dynamics influencing how people work, live, and play, 2021 could establish itself as a year where the Asia Pacific enters a new cycle of real estate growth, innovation and investment,” said Couse.
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