As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to invade our lives, we are all learning first-hand how to adapt to a world dominated by social distancing and quarantines. Our once bustling offices are now vacant shells, reminding us of the strangeness and uncertainty of the moment we’re in.
The impact of transformative events like this is real.
In the aftermath of 9/11, business travel came to a screeching halt. Leading prognosticators proclaimed that the days of face-to-face business meetings were gone forever, yet person-to-person interaction reemerged as indispensable. Offices filled back up and business travel returned and then boomed.
No one knows the future, but you don’t have to be a gambler to bet that a post COVID-19 world will bring with it a new normal.
Preparing for the Return… Whenever It Comes
CRE professionals are likely much better off having a plan (or multiple plans) for the return of the workplace, whenever it may be.
Those whose roles are most critical to the business can be reintroduced in a first wave, followed by healthy or unaffected workers, then those who have children out of school.
Those personally impacted by the virus should be the last to return, once they are definitely recovered.
Building social distancing into your plan:
- Reduce density and empower employees to maintain social distances according to their personal comfort levels.
- Extra effort for health & safety
- Comfortable office temperatures can help reduce the levels of general illness in the office
Agile offices have already been proven to slash wasted space and better conform to how people prefer to work.
According to a report by stateofagile.com, the adoption of this solution provides a number of benefits such as:
Smart offices have proven themselves invaluable for not only aligning offices with how people use them, but also for providing critical data to support response efforts in times of crisis.
Workplace technologies for CRE companies include:
Time to go Agile?
While many organizations will be looking to down-size their real estate costs, other will be looking to upgrade their workplaces to meet the fast evolving landscape. Agile workplaces do both, proven to reduce real estate costs by as much 30%, while providing flexible environments that are better equipped to absorb change and support employees.